All summer, he's been joyously naked, and you'd forgotten the rug palaver that ensues as soon as the weather turns...
1. Pulling off a sopping wet rug and somehow wrapping yourself up in it like a cold, annoyed, living mummy in the process.
2. Wishing like mad that you had a heated rug drier — the height of luxury! As it is, there are few places where you can spread out a heavy, wet six foot rug and realistically expect it to get dry.
3. Trying to hang a wet rug up while mud (at least you hope it’s mud) and water (at least you hope it’s water) drips all over you.
4. That stuff caked under the tail strap. Yeah, that’s poo. Nice.
5. Why won’t the blasted thing dry? Two days later, and it’s still as wet as when you took it off, but now it smells damp and stale, too.
6. At this point, someone always points out that, ‘If you leave it on the horse, it dries much quicker.’ Thanks for that. Really helpful.
7. That distinctive wet rug smell. Wet horse, mould and poo. Urgh.
8. Worrying when it’s blowing a gale and tipping down with ice-cold rain that your horse is too cold, and will be even colder if the rug somehow blows off.
9. Worrying on relatively mild nights that your horse is over-rugged.
10. Did they definitely re-proof it properly when you took it to be cleaned ready for winter? You’re not too sure…
11. Trying to fasten buckles and straps with freezing cold fingers. How long does it take?
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12. Untwisting the surcingles before putting the rug on. Rapunzel’s hair had nothing on these tangles.
13. Your horse’s proud face as he trots up to you in the field with the neck/surcingle/front fastenings torn off and the rest of the rug flapping in the breeze. “I’ve been working on this all night, Mum, but in the end it was Horse: One. Rug: Nil!”
14. There’s only one thing for it – you need to buy another rug…