The constantly changing temperatures of the British winter can leave owners unsure as to which rugs to put on their horses, especially overnight. A mild evening can easily give way to a sharp frost, making it difficult for you to keep your equine partner comfortable until you return in the morning.

A new type of stable rug, launched last year, could offer a solution to this problem by enabling the horse to regulate its own body temperature. The Mirotec TecRug uses “space blanket” technology to keep the horse warm in a range of temperatures.

The rug uses strips of micro-perforated, reflective foil to reflect some of the horses’ body heat back towards the skin. The 4in wide strips are inserted into the wadding of the lightweight cotton quilt with 3in gaps between each strip, which allows any excess heat to escape. The perforations in the foil and the gaps between the strips also allow moisture to evaporate through the cotton lining and outer.

Managing director of Mirotec UK, vet Alan Robinson, explains: “This rug offers a totally new way of keeping your horse warm. Currently when the temperature drops owners pile on the layers to insulate for the horse’s body heat. These rugs can be heavy for the horse to carry around. The TecRug is lightweight and very warm, making it very comfortable for the horse.”

According to Robinson, the rug is suitable for use in all situations as it can be topped with a lightweight turnout rug for use in the field, or a thin summer sheet or similar to prevent it getting excessively dirty in the stable.

“The lightweight cotton quilt makes it easy for the rug to be washed in a domestic washing machine (on a 40 degree cycle with a non-biological powder) and it can be mended using a domestic sewing machine should the outer of the rug become damaged,” he explains.

The TecRug is available in blue with red binding in sizes 5’0″ to 6’9″. Matching neck cover and leg wraps are also available. Currently the rug can only be purchased via mail order direct from Mirotec.

So what is the cost of this clever new concept? Well at £199.95 including VAT and carriage it’s not cheap, but if it’s as good as the company claims, maybe this could signal the start of a new revolution in the way we keep our horses warm.

For more details or to make a purchase contact (tel: 01793 433500) or visit: www.mirotec.co.uk