Owner: Katie Navarra, Mechanicville, New York.
Blanket needs: Protection from the snow. While Katie lets her horse, Bella, grow a winter coat, she still likes to blanket her horse during the colder months. “Bella has a tendency to be sensitive to damp weather,” Katie explains. “So I need something that’ll keep her dry when she’s outside in the snow, or in her stall.”
Blanket problems: Durability. “Bella is tough on her blankets,” Katie shares. “She’s a Houdini; I’ve had her escape out of multiple blankets, so I need something that’ll stay on her and won’t rip easily.” Katie also notes she’s become specific about the blanket’s hardware. “It gets pretty cold where I live, so I like to have a blanket that has a snap-closure front, so I don’t have to worry about taking my gloves off to throw a blanket on Bella.”
Blanket recommendation: The SmartPak Ultimate Turnout Blanket. This blanket is made from a heavy-duty, 1,000-denier ballistic nylon material that’s designed to resist rubs and tears, making it a great option for horses that are extremely tough on their blankets. The quick-clip front closures are easy to adjust and use, and take away the need to remove gloves to fasten a blanket on your horse. This blanket also has a nylon outer that’s waterproof and breathable, and a tail flap that provides additional protection from cold, damp weather. The nylon and elastic leg straps allow your horse to move freely and keep his blanket from shifting or rubbing. More info: $199.95; smartpakequine.com.
Blanket recommendation: The Weaver Leather Heavyweight Turnout Blanket (#35-1516). It offers ultimate protection for those extra-cold winter days. It’s made from 1,200-denier material and offers 300 grams of polyester fiberfill. This blanket features a full cut, large drop, and tail flap that’s designed to contour to your horse’s body and reduce wind exposure while keeping him warm and dry. Shoulder gussets allow your horse to move comfortably. The snap-front closure is easy to fasten and unfasten, and is safeguarded with a hook-and-loop closure, so it’ll stay fastened and secure while your horse plays in the pasture. More info: $118.19; ridethebrand.com. →