For the Amateur Arabian Horse Exhibitor


If you've ever had a brilliant idea that you have wanted to share with others, this is your forum!  Send us your favorite grooming tips, shortcuts, ideas, or whatever you want.  Remember, at AAOTR.com we're all out to help each other be that much more competitive in the show ring....

E-mail your tips to [email protected]!


BABY WIPES!   My personal favorite are "baby wipes".  Great for cleaning ears, eyes and nose for horses.  Also can be used on leather for last minute clean up, like your reins or even your show boots for a final shine! 

They are also very refreshing for yourself after a class or just to clean your hands off.  I wouldn't leave home without them!


I have used fabric softener sheets for almost 20 years in my grooming kit.  I started using it because it is so dry here in New Mexico most of the year, and the static electricity can be terrible.  During the winter and
spring, when it is too cold to bathe the horses, and they are at their dirtiest, you brush the dirt off, but the static electricity causes it to jump right back on the horse!!  So before brushing, I wrap a sheet around a palm-sized rubber curry, and just scrub the coat in circular motions, moving the sheet around to clean areas, and you can SEE the dirt fall to the ground, rather than zapping back to their body.  Then you can brush successfully.   It's also wonderful when the horse is shedding ... less of the hair winds up on YOU!  


When polishing feet, it is best to stand the horse on wet cement, or a 12' length of artificial-turf type carpet to keep the dust from adhering to the still wet polish, as it dulls the shine.


I washed my black velvet Dressage Pad and tossed it in the dryer...the black dye came off and I had black dye on the inside of my dryer. It wouldn't come off w/ a damp cloth, so I posted a Help Message on the Michigan Horse Board.  Gabz suggested that I put some old towels or rags that had been washed, in the dryer and set the heat to the highest setting. This would warm up the dye and the towels would soak it up.



The Great Crash Diet...

Because show season is looming upon us, most of us have been dieting since January 1...you know, to fit into those dreaded chaps...or even worse, hunt breeches!

Have you noticed (for those of us who are getting "older" that it's not as easy to lose weight anymore?  You eat less, but you can't seem to shed the pounds?  Worst of all, you crave your fav foods...my downfall was Cheetos.

By pure chance I happened upon a book at the grocery store several weeks ago that I have read, understood, taken to heart, and have to share!  It got me started on a weight reduction program that goes two steps even better.  FIRST:  It totally eliminates your cravings for certain foods; SECOND:  You can eat, never feel hungry, and...what a concept...LOSE WEIGHT.

The secret is low carbs.  In a nutshell, (I will write a more lengthy explanation within the next few weeks) high carbohydrate foods turn into sugar in your body, and those sugars are what contribute to your inability to lose weight and your constant hunger.  Even though you eat fruits and veggies as part of your low-cal diet, did you realize that many of the fruits and veggies you are eating are extremely high in carbs?  Carrots, bananas, apples, peas, corn, tomatoes...all the veggies and fruits I like!  Substitute with celery, asparagus, cucumbers, and you might be surprised.

Eat one "full" meal a day...that would include representatives from all of the food groups, and allows you (once a day) to eat the high carbs.  Always preface that meal with a big tossed green salad.  The trick in planning this meal is to balance your portions in equal thirds...1/3 high protein (meat), 1/3 high carb (bread, corn, whatever), and 1/3 veggie (broccoli, ??).  My favorite quick, easy, filling, and totally working dinner is a green salad followed by the Green Giant frozen meal of Chicken Alfredo.  That has pasta, veggies, and everything to balance out that thirds plan.  Then I usually treat myself to a scoop or two of my favorite ice cream...Dreyer's Double Fudge Brownie.

For breakfast I eat a broiled chicken breast topped with grated cheese, and a half a cucumber.  Lunch is usually a few celery sticks and the rest of the cucumber.  I'm never hungry, have not touched (nor have I craved) a single Cheeto since I started...and have lost nearly 10 pounds without even trying!

More to follow.  Let me know if you want the name of the book!  [email protected]


Some of us board our horses far from home, thereby necessitating long drives both to and from the barn.

Hunger plays a major factor in focus.  If you are hungry during your ride, you are less likely to be able to focus on the details of your training.  If you are hungry when you get into the car to drive home, you are likely to develop a bitter attitude towards having to "drag yourself" to the barn each day.

Easy fix:  Non-Perishable Food!*

Stock your glove box with non-perishable foods...cookies, candy, crackers, chips**, or what have you.  While I personally can't drink a glass of water while I'm driving (without stopping every five minutes at a restroom), you might also consider a bottle of water or can of Coca-Cola.  This will satisfy your hunger and make your riding/driving experiences that much more enjoyable!

*Beware, salty chips make you THIRSTY!

** Jeanie's husband reminds everyone not to forget about the food in your glove box, or that could be ugly.


Tricks to avoid that spring body clip:

16 hours of lights!

Blanket, blanket, blanket!  (It is important to never let your horse get chilled if you want this process to work).

Elbow grease!!!!  Rub on your horse DAILY with one of those little hand held curry combs.  This step is so important when the hair really starts to shed.

Diet!  Always fed a well balanced diet for great coats.



If you want to breed your mare early (February) put her under 16 hours of light a day.  This will trick her system into thinking it is summer again.  The light only needs to be bright enough to  be able to read a book in the corner of the stall.  Start lights now (or before Dec. 1st). 16 hours of light also helps with hair coats.

FROM ANONYMOUS (1), 11/08/00:

Part of my ringside grooming kit includes several of those clothlike fabric softener sheets that you put in the dryer.  They are great for wiping down your horse's body and legs, boots, tack, etc., right before you go into the ring.  The sheets leave a shine that doesn't attract dust.  They're cheap (found in the laundry section of the supermarket), easy to use, and disposable.  I've also noticed that flies don't like them which can also save on fly spray.

FROM ANONYMOUS (1), 11/08/00:

Good "shares" in the grooming department:

1.  Face highlighting.   First, show clip and then clean off the face with a wet towel.  After the skin dries, put a light coat of baby oil on the muzzle and around the eyes, let it soak in for about a minute, and then wipe it off.  This "prepares" the skin.  Afterwards, I apply a light, and I emphasize light, coat of one of the common highlighting products, or just use petroleum jelly (Vaseline), to finish the highlighting process. Make sure you don't overdo it as too much goop attracts dust and dirt, and sags and runs in hot weather which detracts from the overall effect.  I usually finish by wiping off any excess and leaving less rather than more.

2.  Ears:  After clipping ears, I wipe them out with rubbing alcohol to get the scurf out of the insides. Once dry, I finish by wiping the insides with a rag sprayed with fly spray.  This prevents bugs and flies from swarming around my horse's ears.

3.  Feet:  For feet, I use a black hand sander that's shaped like a kitchen sponge.  These can be purchased at a Home Depot, or similar hardware store, for about $1.50 each.  The sanders are pliable which makes them easy to form to a hoof, plus they have fine and coarse sandpaper.  I use these sanders to get the initial dry hoof build-up off, farrier's rasp marks, and to prepare the hoof for final preparation.  After this initial step, I use a medium grit sandpaper (by hand) and then finish with a light sandpaper.  Once the sanding process is completed, I clean the hoof surface and let it dry.  Once dry, I apply shoe polish paste (black for a dark hoof, neutral for light or brown hooves - do not use white or brown as it really looks gross) and let this dry.   Afterwards, I buff with a clean cloth and then apply my hoof polish (either black or clear).  Make sure you let the hoof polish dry before riding off into the sunset.  You'll find your horse's feet will shine like the pros do plus your farrier will love you for not using the electric sanders.

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