Winter is upon us and even down in the south we get some nasty wet and cold weather. Blankets are important to keep our equine friends warm and comfortable in the elements, especially those living outside. My horse lives outside most of the time, only coming inside when the weather is continually bad. So a quality, waterproof blanket was a must for him. I don’t have a stable blanket for him. If it is cold enough inside still, I will double his turnout for a stable blanket. This prevents me from having to buy more than one blanket! I tried a cheaper turnout last year, which I’ll tell you about, that held up OK. This year, however, I was in the market for something a little more hardy. With blankets running around $300 easily, it’s difficult to find something quality without spending a ton of money. I did some searching and found a nice and affordable option.
Last year I purchased a MIO brand medium weight turnout blanket. This is the one that held up OK. It is a great price at only $80. It was great for keeping Z warm and lasted really well last year. However, this year I’ve noticed it is not as waterproof if he has been in the rain for a long period of time. He is also turned out with a larger herd now and quickly got a rip in it. I would recommend this blanket if you are looking for something mainly for warmth or light rain and if your horse is not turned out in large groups. I still use it to layer with because the filling is great quality! They also carry a variety of other blankets and sheets for low prices.
The blanket I got this year, after several recommendations by friends, is the Weatherbeeta Comfitech Combo Turnout (Medium Weight). This brand is built to stand up in the elements. Owners of other horses at my barn were already using this brand and had great success with it keeping their horses dry and not ripping. I picked this particular blanket because it has the neck cover as well. It does not detach, but I like this because it stays put and doesn’t slide around like I have seen the detachable ones do. It was also significantly cheaper to go with the version that the neck piece does not detach. I know it does seem more convenient to go with a detachable piece. However in my opinion, if you are purchasing it with the medium or heavy weight fill, chances are when you use it, it will be cold enough anyways that you would want the neck piece on!
Another tip I have on blanket purchasing is to do your shopping on Amazon. Amazon always has prices lower than the manufacturers and if you are a prime member (which I highly recommend) you get the free two-day shipping. I paid significantly less on Amazon for both blankets than I would have at Dover. In the future, I will be recommending other equine products on Amazon.
-Hannah + Z