In winter, once the temperature dips, you would want your horse to have the correct size blanket.
This will protect them in the cold weather. A snug fit and no blanket slippage will help your horse maintain its condition.
Choosing a correctly sized blanket will prevent rubbing. This gives your horse more freedom to move in their paddock or stable. There are many different styles of blankets you can choose from.
In this article, we talk about how to measure a horse blanket and the steps to make sure it fits your horse comfortably.
Choosing the Best Horse Blankets
Before you start shopping, you should correctly measure your horse for a blanket with the help of a second person.
Certain measurements are required to fit your horse for a blanket and you should get these before making a purchase. Other considerations include fittings such as tail straps, surcingle straps, and chest buckles. The denier of the blanket will influence its strength and how warm it is.
While suppliers may offer free shipping on the return of ill-fitting blankets, they won’t do so when your measurements are incorrect. Take two measurements to ensure the right fit before you shop. You should measure from shoulder to tail and from withers to elbow for a perfectly fitted and warm blanket.
Measure Your Horse To Fit A Horse Blanket
To determine your horse’s size, measure using a soft measuring tape from the center point of your horse’s chest, across their shoulder to their hamstring, just below their tail. From this measurement, subtract four inches.
Now you have your final measurement. This most accurately mimics the manner in which the manufacturer measures their blankets.
Steps On How To Measure A Horse Blanket
While these steps may seem excessive, you can measure your horse quickly with a second person helping you. Remember, even horses of the same height won’t necessarily take the same size blanket. It’s about the inches measurement you need to take around the horse’s flank, not their height.
Stand your horse on level ground. You don’t want to measure incorrectly on account of the ground sloping. Level ground is extremely important, and you should be specific, don’t simply round up or down on the numbers.
Have one person hold the one end of a soft measuring tape at the center of the horse’s chest, where their neck meets with the V of the horse’s shoulders.
Stretch the tape measure across the widest point of the horse’s shoulder, alongside their barrel and the length of their body. Stopping at the widest point of the horse’s hindquarter, take a measurement.
Be sure to use a flexible measuring tape as a metal tape measure will not form around the horse that is not flat nor simply round.
To ensure the right fit, repeat this process for the other side of the horse. If you have the same measurement, you are on the right track.
Some horse owners prefer a bigger size blanket, so they may opt for one size bigger than the measurement they have obtained.
This is especially true for chunky ponies. Owners may go one size bigger, or simply add the four inches measurement back to the final blanket size.
Horse Blanket Sizing Chart
Most manufacturers of horse blankets have a sizing chart that acts as a helpful guide to ensure your correctly measured horse results in the right size blanket for your horse. From petite to pony and full-size horses, there are horse blankets for any size horse.
An average size pony might have a measurement of 51 inches, while a small size horse could have a measurement of 63 inches.
The blanket for a full-size horse may be anything from 72-90 inches.
Not all horses are the same width across the barrel though. This is why some manufacturers will offer you free shipping on returned blankets that don’t fit. Despite the blanket measurement being the same as the horse measurement, some blankets won’t fit accurately.
How Manufacturers Measure Horse Blankets
A horse blanket is measured by laying it on a flat surface with all the fastenings undone. Using a soft measuring tape, hold the tape pulled tight across the blanket from the center of the front neck or chest section across the length of the blanket to the tail.
Extremely important, the two measurements taken from the blanket and the horse needs to match.
How the Type of Blanket Influences Your Horse Measurement
Regardless of the many different styles of blankets from stock blankets to a turnout blanket, horse blankets need to be measured correctly. Depending on the temperature scale, your horse will need a blanket that is suitable for the weather and whether your horse has been clipped or not.
Types of Horse Blankets and Fitment
Some blankets come with a waterproof insulator layer, which helps to keep horses dry when they are wearing a turnout blanket. A turnout blanket is an example of a heavier blanket, which will also be thicker than other horse blankets.
A turnout blanket acts to keep a horse warm in inclement weather by keeping the horse dry, helping them manage their energy requirements better.
Such blankets may have an additional tented section that goes over the horse’s tail for added warmth. This additional section can influence the final blanket size, so be sure the style of blanket you have chosen doesn’t include this in the final measurements.
A 3-Point Check on Horse Blanket Fits
To ensure your horse’s blanket fits them correctly once it has arrived, you should do the following 3 point check.
Point One: Shoulders
With your horse wearing the horse blanket, check that the sewn tape of the front buckles starts at the horse’s shoulder tip. This is where the measuring tape crossed. Also check that you can comfortably slide two fingers between your horse’s neck and the blanket edge when they are fully strapped into the blanket.
Point Two: Where the Neck Meets the Blanket
On your horse’s withers, you should be able to insert a full hand. This ensures the blanket fits them correctly without rubbing.
Point Three: Final Length
Horse blankets should end at the elbow, and if the blanket hangs lower than that, you may have to bag it and ship it back to the manufacturer. Some manufacturers also provide a second measured section from the withers to the elbow to check on length. Be sure not to forget to do all measurements.