Step by step guide on how to measure your horse for a rug

Posted by Dionne Payne on

A simple and quick guide regarding how to measure your horse:

  1. Use a soft tape measure
  2. Measure from the centre of your horse's chest to the end of their hind quarters
  3. Use the measuring conversion from inches or centimetres into feet by clicking here
  4. Rugs are sized with 3” increments – if you measure for example 6”1 – go to 6”3 rather than 6”0 (for horses between sizes, it is always best to go bigger than smaller)

Image of horse showing how to measure for a rug from the middle of the chest to the hind quarters

Note: For horses that are wider and more solid, you may need to go up a size to accommodate for their width. For finer and/or narrower horses, you may need to go down a size. For horses with large shoulders, consider a gusset in the rug for freedom of movement.

Once you have your rug, it is recommended that you try and keep the rug clean when trying it on in case you need to return or exchange it for a different size. If you can, use a thin clean cotton sheet and try to keep it away from the ground. For heavy rugs, this can be difficult so you may wish to consider trying it on in a clean stable or clean environment.  Also note, do not remove tags until you are completely satisfied with your purchase.  The rug must be in a resalable condition for a retailer to accept a return or exchange.

Things to check when trying their rug on:

  1. Check that the rug sits approximately 2-4 inches in front of the withers to prevent pressure or rubbing. You should also be able to fit your hand down the front of the rug and comfortably around the wither area to ensure it is not too tight.
  2. Check that when your horse is in the grazing position with their head down (Tip: put a treat on the floor) that the rug covers the top of the tail. If it doesn’t, the rug is too small and will not protect them against the elements. On the reverse of that, if the rug hangs beyond the top of the tail, the rug is too big and could result in damage or injury.
  3. Check the surcingles are not to short or too long. You should be able to put a hand's width between your horse’s tummy and the straps. Poor fitting straps could result in damage or injury, especially if they are trying to lie down or roll.
  4. Check the leg straps have a hand's width between the straps and the horse’s thigh. The best way to fasten straps is to cross over the leg straps (see image below) so that they pass through each other creating a figure of eight effect which keeps them out of the way. Ill-fitting straps can result in damage or injury as well as rubbing.
  5. If the rug does not have straps and instead have a fillet string, make sure it is fastened securely to both sides of the rug to prevent the rug from blowing out of control in windy conditions. Ensure the strap is not too loose which may result in the horse catching it on their back legs and causing injury.

Image showing how to correctly cross over leg straps on a horse rug

Lastly, like human clothing, every brand can be different from the other. It is recommended you read all information available before purchasing your rug.

To see our selection of rugs, please click here to visit our site

If you are unable to find what you are looking for, please continue to visit our site as new products are being added daily.


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