When it comes to the milder months, choosing a rug to suit the climate and keep your horse as comfortable as possible is important. With so many options available on the market, deciding on the best lightweight rugs for your situation will depend on various factors. From turnout rugs to fly rugs, there are various benefits to each that are designed for your horses comfort.
Some horse owners believe that going for a rug-free approach during the summer months is preferable so their skin can breathe and they do not need to worry about additional layers. Although this is down to each individual, many lightweight rugs are designed specifically for warmer weather and bring various benefits that make them a suitable choice for the summer months.
A common misconception is that rugs will make a horse feel even warmer than without, but the breathable material used allows the fresh air to flow through the material, keeping their body cool and reflecting the UV rays to prevent the direct sunlight from reaching. Similarly to humans, UV rays can cause a painful and dangerous sunburn for horses and for darker horses especially, their coat can become bleached and cause lasting damage. As well as protecting their skin from sunlight, the addition of a rug can protect their coat from damage that may be caused by rolling in the dirt, insect bites or any debris in the air so you can easily maintain a neat and healthy coat all throughout the year.
Different types of lightweight rug
- Turnout rugs
Ideal for milder weather in spring, summer and autumn months, turnout rugs are a long lasting solution that you can count on during various conditions. Their lightweight characteristics help to keep your horse comfortable in the warmth whilst letting the skin breathe underneath and keeping the direct sunlight off of their body. Turnout rugs are also suitable for the rainy weather, keeping them dry in any unpredicted spells of bad weather so you don’t have to rush outside to change their rug.
- Fly rugs
A fly rug is a welcome addition during the warm months when flies, mosquitos and biting insects become a daily nuisance. As well as being irritating for your horse, biting insects risk harmful diseases being transmitted which can have long term effects. Fly rugs are designed using fabric technologies that deter flies or utilise patterns such as zebra print which discourages insects from landing on them. In addition to keeping away flies, their lightweight properties are still breathable and comfortable for your horse during the warm weather.
- Cooler rugs
As the name suggests, cooler rugs are designed to keep your horse comfortable during warm weather. Their soft lining and wicking properties prevent rubbing and allow the horses skin to breathe, suitable for wear both in the stable and on the go. Many horse owners rely on their cooler rugs following bathing as they help to keep them clean and maintain a tidy coat, keeping dust and dirt at bay.