Washing Horse Blanket
Date: March 2nd, 2010
If you have light-weight blankets that don’t get too dirty, such as coolers and show sheets, you can use your household washing machine to clean off small amounts of hair and dirt. Be sure that the blanket has enough room to agitate in your machine; if you have to pack the blanket into your washer, it is likely too bulky.
When I wash my lighter blankets in my home machine, there are some general guidelines I always follow. Be sure to use cold water, as this will prevent the fabric from breaking down and will reduce shrinkage. Also, find a detergent with minimal chemicals and never use fabric softener. Make sure the blanket is rinsed thoroughly before it dries. To be sure, I sometimes run the blanket through an extra rinse cycle without soap, as even small amounts of soap residue can irritate some horses.
Unlike light-weight blankets, bulky horse blankets will certainly take a toll on your household washing machine over time. Household washers are not meant to handle the large amounts of dirt, hair, and manure that come off a blanket. Additionally, the hair and mud can cause an unwanted back-up in your home drainage system. Instead of using your household washer, you may opt to have the blankets professionally cleaned, or you could use a do-it-yourself approach to horse blanket cleaning. The following guidelines can help you wash bulky horse blankets thoroughly and efficiently without your home washing machine.
Drape bulky blankets over a fence and use a shedding blade to remove as much hair as possible. Then, using a stiff brush, remove any remaining hair and loose dirt from the blanket. Hose the blanket down with clean, cold water and scrub it with a blanket wash, or a detergent for delicates. Rinse the blanket thoroughly with cold water until the water running off the blanket is clean and free of soap suds. Provide ample time for the blanket to dry in the sun before you store it away for the season.
The most difficult part of the washing process is rinsing and drying. Take special care to rinse the blanket thoroughly, and do not fold up or store the blanket before it has completely dried. A blanket that is even slightly damp will rot if it is put away too soon.
If you have any further questions regarding horse blankets, email me at AskMax@CountryMax.com, or visit your local CountryMax store today!
SOURCE: http://www.petplace.com/horses/how-to-clean-horse-blankets/page1.aspx, http://www.ehow.com/how_5089739_clean-horse-blanket.html