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Cleaning a Winter Blanket   

  2008 Cherry Hill   Copyright Information

While the blanket is still on the horse, brush the outside of the blanket to remove any mud or other debris.  If the outside of the blanket is fairly clean except for a few manure or grass stains, you can spray the spots with a solution made with your regular blanket wash product.  Let the spray set for 30 seconds and then scrub with a textured sponge.  This is easiest to do on the horse.

    Remove the blanket from the horse and lay it out in a clean area such as on the rubber mats of the grooming area.  Brush the wither fleece to remove any hair or debris and to fluff it so it will wash more thoroughly.

101 Horsekeeping Tips DVDBrush the inside of the blanket with a stiff-bristled brush to loosen patches of hair.  Since hair is one of the most damaging things to your washing machine and since it will just spread in the wash water and distribute itself over the whole blanket, the more hair you can loosen and remove, the better your blanket will look coming out of the washer and the longer your washing machine will last.

    If you have a vacuum, it will make the job of removing the hair from the blanket lining much easier and more thorough.

    Unbuckle all leg straps, chest buckles, and untie tail cords.

    Clean the Velcro if necessary by using a darning needle to lift the hair pads and duct tape to remove stragglers.  Then seal the Velcro with separate pieces of Velcro kept on hand specifically for wash day.  You can buy Velcro by the foot off the roll in varying widths at any large fabric store.

    Cover all buckles with a sock to protect the inside of the washer tub from chipping.  You can tie or rubber band the socks onto the buckles.

Horse Tack Care and Cleaning by Cherry Hill    Always read and follow the blanket manufacturer's washing instructions.  Add the laundry products to the wash water.  Then load the blanket into the machine in a specific fashion.  If the outer shell is water resistant or water proof, it is best to fold the blanket inside out.  Otherwise the waterproof shell would prevent water from flushing through the blanket and there will be an unevenness of washing: dry spots, dirty spots, unrinsed areas and places that are soaking wet at the end of the cycle.  If the outer shell in not waterproof, you should load the blanket with the dirtiest side facing outward.  Use a front load machine without an agitator whenever possible.  If necessary to use a home machine, carefully lay the blanket around the agitator in a circle trying to keep all of the straps inside the blanket.


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