Trivia Challenge:                     Blankety-Blank!

Blankets help keep your horse comfy when temperatures plummet. Try our Trivia Challenge to test your knowledge of your horse’s winter wear.

Illustration by Navah Rae Adams

1. True or false: A turnout is the tricky maneuver your horse performs as he shimmies out of his blanket, turning it inside-out in the process.

T / F

2. Denier is term that describes:

A) a horse owner who denies reality about whether a blanket is needed.

B) a city in in Crawford County, Iowa, where horses always wear blankets.

C) the ‘thread count’ of a horse blanket, indicating its strength/durability.

3. The surcingle strap of a blanket fastens:

A) under your horse’s belly.

B) across your horse’s chest.

C) under your horse’s tail.

4. True or false: Horses have their own preferences regarding wearing blankets.

T / F

5. To find your horse’s blanket size, you must measure him:

A) around his heartgirth, then multiply by 2 and subtract 5.

B) from his poll, down his neck and topline to the end of his dock (tailbone).

C) from the middle of his chest, along his side, and around to the middle of his tail.

6. When putting a blanket on your horse, which strap should your fasten first?

A) the one under his belly

B) the one across his chest

C) it doesn’t really matter

7. True or false: If your horse has adequate protection from winter winds and wetness—even snow–he may not need a blanket.

T / F

8. Which of these four items are NOT optional blanket accessories: hood, shoulder guard, body liner, neck cover?

A) shoulder guard, neck cover

B) hood, body liner

C) they are all real accessories

HOW’D YOU DO? (Answers below.)

1. F is correct. Though horses can be Houdinis in escaping from their blankets, a turnout is actually shorthand for turnout blanket, a sturdy, waterproof cover meant for your horse to wear while turned out in a pen or pasture.

2. C is correct. A blanket’s denier is like a sheet’s thread count—the higher the number, the stronger and more durable the fabric.

3. A is correct. The surcingle strap is a blanket’s belly band and the primary anchor for keeping the blanket in place.

4. T is correct. In a research study, horses indicated by touching markers whether they wanted their blankets on or off depending on the temperature of the day. If you don’t believe us, check here.

5. C is correct. And though it’s a lot simpler than multiplying and subtracting, it helps to have someone assist you in managing the tape measure.

6. B is correct. It’s a safety thing: Once the chest strap is buckled, the blanket can’t slide down and get tangled in your horse’s legs. When taking his blanket off, unbuckle the chest strap last for the same reason.

7. T is correct. Horses generally acclimate well to cold weather by growing a thick, fluffy haircoat. But if your horse is body clipped or older or has health issues, he may need a stable blanket or turnout even if he does have adequate shelter.

8. C is correct. There’s practically no end to the way you can accessorize your horse’s winter-season apparel.

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