Friday, November 19, 2010

Grooming solutions with Molly O'Brien

Well, we can’t deny it any longer. The winter is upon us and the cold weather is already here. Muddy fields, frosty mornings and numb toes are, once again, part of our every day lives. And, as every horse owner knows, mud plus cold, wet, weather equals grooming misery! But, before you panic, read this blog. Absorbine’s very own grooming expert, Molly O’Brien, has some brilliant solutions to keep your winter grooming problems at bay.


Molly says: “I always say ‘prevention is better than cure’, and this is certainly the case when it comes to grooming. Using ShowSheen can actually help to repel dust and dirt, as it contains silicone which can help to prevent the mud from sticking. But, if your horse is caked in the stuff then the first step is to let the mud dry. Unfortunately, short of rinsing your horse off with a hose, or trashing more towels than you can imagine, there’s no good way to remove wet mud. For dry mud, you should start with a good curry comb, using it in the traditional circular patter. Be careful not to use it on the face or below the knees and hocks. For those sensitive areas, use either a specially designed soft curry, or a soft brush. Then, if necessary, use a shedding blade, followed by a stiff body brush. Some sensitive horses hate the curry comb and if this is the case for you then you should invest a couple of pounds in a cactus cloth or grooming mitt. These do a real ‘hands-on’ job and are great for removing the mud – even from the face and legs. A soft body brush comes next, to remove the dust, then wipe over with a cloth and a spray of ShowSheen to add a nice, finished shine.


Molly says: “Your approach depends on the cause of the tangled mess, if it is wet mud, then it’s best to let it dry first, then break out big clumps of the dirt by hand. You don’t want to apply anything liquid until those clumps are gone, lest you bring the mud back to life! Then, apply some ShowSheen Moisturising Detangler liberally through the hair, from top to bottom. Next, take a wide-tooth comb and start from the bottom, gently combing out those tangles. But take your time - don’t tug or pull – as breaking the hair is a cardinal sin!”

Molly says: “To remove stains, your best bet is to use a cleaning product specifically designed for horses. Horse’s skin is very sensitive, especially in terms of PH balance, so using a generic shampoo or bar soap can disrupt it, leaving your horse more prone to skin infections. When it is too cold for a bath, use Miracle Groom (nicknamed the ‘bath in a bottle’!) It has a patented 5-in-1 formula and is designed to remove stains with out the need for any water. It’s even safe for all long and short hair animals!

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