Here’s what I’d call the best horse blankets
As winter approaches, you shoot a worried glance at your beloved horse. Much as we would hate to be left without proper clothes in the cold weather, horses need blankets to keep themselves warm.
But oh my, can picking the right one get confusing!!
The thing is, I could easily tell you that Snuggit Turnout is the best horse blanket. It’s made of 1200-denier polyester and comes with cozy 300g polyfill.
But that would be just parroting some vague numbers. It doesn’t really answer ‘Why?’ now, does it?
So here’s what I propose:
Let me summarize a few important factors you want to consider when picking the right horse blanket. These do cost a bit and you deserve proper information.
Then, I’ll move on to a quick comparison table with some additional details.
Here’s my first question:
Are you keeping your horse in the stable, or do you let them fully enjoy the outdoors a.k.a. turnout?
Stable horse blankets and turnout blankets differ a lot, especially during the winter. There’s a simple reason for that – the stable type, like this insulated Derby, aren’t waterproof.
Technically, both the Derby and the Snuggit have the same denier and polyfill. However, the first one will get soaked in no time. The other will withstand moisture and keep your horse both warm and dry.
If your horse will be outside, definitely go for a turnout, waterproof cover.
There goes my second question:
How wild is your horse? Does it thrash around and bite on blankets?
Normal polyester or cotton horse blankets might be durable, but a really rowdy animal could tear through them.
In such a case, you need to consider going for ultra tough fabrics such as ballistic nylon. Horseware is a very respected brand due to higher-end blankets like the Rambo.
Where other blankets fail, Rambo will withstand dragging, biting and similar pressure on the fabric.
Alright, let’s see a concise comparison chart that features some best horse blankets. Pick according to your needs, as I’ve made an effort to touch on various possible scenarios:
- Tough-1 Snuggit
- Best for:
Extra warm turnout blanket that is also waterproof. Adjustable necks and shoulders for comfort fit.
1200-denier poly, waterproof.
300 grams Polyfill
- Derby Originals
- Best for:
Fluffy and warm stable blanket. Breathable, with extra warmth for the belly area.
1200-denier nylon, not waterproof.
300 grams Polyfill
- Horseware Rambo
- Best for:
Ultra durable turnout blanket made of ballistic nylon. Great for more hot-headed and wild horses, waterproof.
1000-denier ultra tough ballistic nylon, waterproof.
- Horseware Amigo
- Best for:
Lightweight, breathable cotton sheet for summer nights. Designed for stable use, gorgeous designs.
100% durable, breathable cotton.
Great for more chilly summer nights.
Important terms for horse blankets
As you already saw, there are a few terms that horse owners and manufacturers use to gauge how a horse blanket performs.
The first one is the denier. A lot of people think that the number of deniers somehow equals the pure strength/durability of an equine blanket.
And they’re wrong.
Denier actually measures the weight/density of the fabric a blanket is made of. The higher the denier, the more close-woven the blanket is. The lower the denier, the sparser the fabric.
But materials – and how they’re woven, matter too. A 1000-denier blanket can lose to a 600-denier blanket if the latter has its fibers woven in a more tight fashion.
The best winter turnout blankets for horses feature higher denier with tight fabrics, as the extra density helps with keeping them warm.
Conversely, if the winter temperatures in your region are milder, a lower denier blanket will be a proper lightweight solution. It won’t make your horse feel too hot.
For moderate conditions, a 600-denier waterproof blanket should be more than fine. For extra harsh winters, you need to shoot for 1000+ denier.
Polyfill & Fiberfill
These two are the second most important measure for horse blankets. Honestly, most products I’ve seen come with polyfill.
What fills basically measure is the warmth your horse will get with its winter blanket.
So a rather light 150 gram fill blanket will provide only limited warmth and should never be used in tough winters.
On the other hand, a 300 gram polyfill blanket for horses is consider quite heavy-duty. It will bring your pal coziness throughout the coldest of days.
Polyfill is sandwiched between the inner and outer layer of the blanket. It traps the warmed air between the fibers: here’s where your horse’s warm comfort comes to life.
Note that a horse that’s been groomed with clippers will generally need slightly higher polyfill amount. For example, where a horse with a natural coat gets a 200g polyfill, the clipped animal will require a 300g polyfill blanket.
In a way, polyfill density is as important as making an informed choice with your saddle pad’s fabric.
4 best horse blankets: reviewed
1. Best turnout, waterproof horse blanket:
Tough-1 Snuggit 300g
Tough-1 have a very fitting brand name and this is their most popular product, well within reason.
Even harsh winter will have nothing on your horse with a whole 1200 deniers and 300 grams of polyfill. As I mentioned before, both of these parameters mean a thick-woven fabric that keeps even clipped horses quite warm.
Some winter blankets are a painful fit, but Thick-1 have thought about that too. The neck is adjustable, so you can align it with your horse’s body structure easily.
This custom fit extends to the shoulder area too – another very sensitive area. Normally, a lot of lazy-designed products don’t adjust well, rubbing the horse’s shoulders and irritating them.
Aside from being waterproof with its coated outer layer, this is a very breathable blanket for horses. Even if any moisture collects on it, it will be wicked away from the equine fur.
Sweating during colder months can endanger your animal’s health, so this is an extremely important touch. The comfort of the fleece wither is also unmatched – no rubbing on the body for minimized risk of any discomfort.
All in all, for the money, you get an extremely well-manufactured horse waterproof blanket for harsh winter conditions!
2. Best stable blanket:
Normally, I’m not the biggest fan of Derby Originals. There are more heavy-duty brands with better construction.
However, their stable winter blanket is actually pretty good. It has the same features as the Tough-1’s product:
1200-denier nylon, 300 grams of polyfill and a breathable nylon lining of 210T. Where the difference lies, as I pointed out before, is the lack of waterproof feature here.
The D-rings where you can attach a hood for further warmth are a very nice touch.
But the best thing, hands down, is the adjustable belly band that takes special care of keeping the belly extra warm.
For those who love design variety, things can be a bit disappointing: there’s only one Navy with red trims version of this blanket. Still, I think it actually looks pretty great. Your horse so and so has zero interest in design – all they care about is feeling snug.
Remember to not use this as a turnout blanket for horses, especially on rainy/damp days. It will ruin the fabric.
3. Best blanket for wilder horses:
Horseware Rambo Original
At a first glance, the Rambo seems like your generic turnout blanket.
Sure, it’s waterproof and has the 1000 denier durability we’ve seen in many other models. And, it does have 200 grams of filling that shoot it into the medium warmth range.
The big difference here is the material, because we’re talking about ultra durable ballistic nylon. This is a synthetic fiber used by the military.
It will withstand rougher play by even the rowdiest of horses.
Rambos are famous for their superior technology and smart manufacture too. Waterproofing here is one notch higher, as it relies on the AquaTrans Coating technology.
Some waterproof turnout blankets can get overwhelmed by ultra damp weather. AquaTrans takes care of even higher moisture levels without batting an eyelid…if it had one, of course.
Honestly, probably it’s quite comparable to another famous pet product category: dog towels that dry thicker fur. Definitely a moisture-wicking record-breaker in the horse department.
Do keep in mind that the Rambo is Euro-cut. In other words, sizing here works a bit different from most other manufacturers. It also comes in sizes coming in 3 inch increments. The manufacturer notes that Rambo sizes tend to run large, so consider this too.
The anti-bacterial, smooth and durable lining is the last thing I want to point out as a superb feature. It’s the little cherry on top that justifies the higher price of this turnout sheet…
…as long as you have a very active, rowdy horse, that is!
4. Best horse sheet for summer:
Horseware Amigo Stable
Who said that your horse needs protection only during the colder months of the year?
Summer nights can also get chilly, but not to the point of needing a full-blown denier monster.
Instead, your horse will enjoy having a lightweight sheet made of cotton. The silky caress and gentle touch will provide both night comfort and zero hassle to their sleep.
Amigo is a reputable product that mixes lightweight durability with attractive design and a comfort fit for your equine pal.
In fact, I’ve also recommended Amigo’s summer equipment in my guide to fly sheets for horses. The brand really keeps in mind your buddy’s comfort during the scorching months of the year.
This is a classic cut sheet that, unlike some heavier winter blankets, can be machined washed. You can pick from a few designs and in my opinion, all of them are just gorgeous.
Aside from this, there’s not much else to be said. The Amigo doesnt’ cost an arm and a leg and does it job flawlessly.
Contrary to the Rambo, the Amigo fits somehow better – it shouldn’t run larger than usual sizes. Just round up the increment nearest to what your horse wears usually.