The Various Types of Horse and Blankets and Sheets
If you look in any horse catalog or browse through the blanket section of any tack store you will immediately notice that there is a wide selection of several different types of blankets. To the uninitiated the exact use for each of these blankets can be confusing.
Turn-out rugs are exactly what they sound like. Turn-out rugs are blankets that are sturdy enough to handle the wear and tear of life outside. They are designed to hold up to the roughest of play. They are also designed to rip if the horse gets caught on something in their field.
There are two types of turn-out rugs. The heavy variety are designed to be used during the cold winter months while the lighter blankets (the lighter variety of blankets are typically called sheets while the heavier type are called rugs).
Quarter sheets are strange looking things. Held next to the full size sheets and rugs they look like somebody forgot to attach the from half of the blanket. Blanket designers haven’t forgotten a thing. Quarter sheets are designed to hook to the saddle and cover the horses haunches. These blankets are typically used to keep a horses muscles warm while the rider
waits to go into the show ring after a rider has finished their pre-class schooling session. Some riders decide to save money and instead of purchasing a quarter sheet they simply use their stable sheet folded in half to cover their horse.
Stable sheets are light weight sheets that are too thin to be used outside of the stabling area. They are generally used to cover the horse after its been groomed and bathed. They have the very specific purpose of keeping the horse clean. Some riders use stable sheets to cover a horse while it is being transported. Many large stables have their stable sheets
custom done in their stables colors. Some catalogs and tack shops refer to stable sheets as dress sheets.
Coolers are another type of blanket that are self-explanatory. Coolers are placed on a hot horse to help slow the cooling process. They cover the entire horse, ear to tail. The open design of coolers allows the air to flow through them. Coolers are typically custom designed in a stables colors and can be monogrammed. Several shows give away coolers, instead of trophies and ribbons, as an reward for high point championships.
Fly sheets are blankets that are designed to help keep flies from pestering their horses. Horse owners can choose between a close knit fly sheet or one that has a large weave pattern.
Blanket liners are typically designed from thin smooth material that is designed to slide smoothly across the horses muscles without rubbing off the hair or chaffing the skin. Typically blanket liners cover only the horses chest and shoulders where blankets typically wear at the horses hair.
No matter what type of blanket you decide to use it is important to make sure that the blanket properly fits your horse.