Pictures To chop or not to chop

JJS

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So the last three months have been quite tricky for me horse-wise. After breaking my foot in a riding accident in October, I've been out of action, with only the bare minimum done with my cob girls, who've essentially been turned away. I'm still dealing with the after-effects of that now in the form of nerve and tissue damage (I managed to do quite a number on my foot) and have then had my 28-year-old gelding really rather poorly. Though he's now going the right way, thank goodness, I'm stuck quarantining at home waiting for the results from a covid test, so horsey plans are on hold again 🤦🏻‍♀️

However, while I'm housebound, I'm wanting to plan out what to do next with the horses, and first on the list for Flower is a general tidy-up. Her tail is so long it's trailing on the floor now, and her beard is also due a trim. While I'm at it, I'm wondering whether to chop her mane and feathers too. Part of me feels like snipping so much as an inch off her mane is sacrilege, but it just seems to be constantly filled with wind knots right now. I am (or have been) de-tangling it daily, but it's always the same by the next day.

So, what would you do with this mane? Chop it or leave it? If I do leave it, I'll switch back to doing what I have every other winter and plaiting it up, but even then, she's always been very prone to tangles. If I did trim, I'd be planning on taking it to about 1/2-3/4 of the length it was here, as a yearling.





Whereas now, it's basically down to her elbow.







Looking at all of these summer pictures makes me want to soldier on through and keep it, but detangling it every day with frozen fingers is just no fun at all! 😬 Opinions?
 

mini barnes

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I prefer short manes on most horses....
But not this one!!

I’ve never had a native type, is it ok to leave plaited or does that make it worse?
Surely there must be some sort of detangler you can use?
My lad has a sparse tail so I only really brush when I’ve washed the yak out, so I spray pig oil in it while I’m doing his legs and it’s helped with the knots.
 

Rosietaz

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In usually the first person to get the scissors out and say CHOP! But I think you should leave the mane, maybe neaten it at most. Certainly get a few inches off of the tail!
 

Crazy_cat_lady

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I'm definitely a fan of pulled manes- chop chop chop!!

If you're not sure you could take it to the length in the first photo then decide if you want to go shorter? I think she'd really suit a pulled mane!

I'd also trim her tail so it's not dragging on the floor. I'm usually feathers off but I think she suits hers!
 

cobgoblin

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Either take off her feathers, trim her mane and cut tail to hock length, or, just trim the tail a bit shorter.. I favour the second option.
 

Maryann

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Our retired horses manes and tails got in a bit of a state so I slopped pig oil on the tangles and then worked them out with my fingers. They have stayed fairly respectable for weeks with no further action. I always trim tails in case they stand on them and pull chunks out though.
 

Littlewills

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The feathers would be gone, tail pulled and banged and mane pulled short and neat. But I'd wait till you are riding again and just leave them hary and feral till then.
 

milliepops

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I'm a short mane- long forelock person. Anything that grows one keeps their fringe but I hack manes off to a manageable length. I like a longish tail but they have to be short enough to prevent getting trodden on. I'd leave her legwarmers 😍
 

splashgirl45

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i would trim the tail to between hock and fetlock and use canter spray on both for now. i like her legs but would trim the mane when the better weather arrives. she is still beautiful whatever you do. hope you are soon back to normal
 

JJS

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I’d be chopping and binning the barbed wire... :oops:.
Thanks for the opinions all. Just wanted to quickly address this comment. We’re on a livery yard, so the fencing is out of my hands. We have previously asked if it would be possible to remove the wire, but the answer was a firm ‘no’, as it’s not only to stop the horses destroying the fencing, but the other livestock that graze the land.

That being said, out of 60 plus liveries at the yard and hundreds of cows and sheep, I haven’t heard of a single injury, and mine have never so much as scraped themselves on it. The only casualties have been my rugs 🤷🏻‍♀️
 

Shysmum

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Our retired horses manes and tails got in a bit of a state so I slopped pig oil on the tangles and then worked them out with my fingers. They have stayed fairly respectable for weeks with no further action. I always trim tails in case they stand on them and pull chunks out though.
Just said the same !
 

ownedbyaconnie

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Nooooo don’t touch the mane it’s so pretty. My friend has a similar length mane on her gypsy cob and she does one of those running plaits down her mane just to keep it out of the way.
 

poiuytrewq

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I actually think she would look really nice all trimmed up. She's quite delicate and very pretty. She looks lovely all wild and free too but I think she'd sparkle done up as a little sports horse.
She really would. I’d love an hour on her 😂
I’d just not bother until she was in. The tail would be chopped
 
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