Equine | 29TH JUNE 2021

Clipping A Horse For the First Time

With many of you deciding to clip your own horses this year, we realise that taking up this new skill can be a daunting task, which is why we advise absolutely everyone to follow these steps so you can have a safe and enjoyable clipping experience…and achieve some marvellous results!

Assess your requirements 

Everyone clips in different places and with different equipment available, so this makes it important to assess your needs prior to clipping. If you have not yet decided on a horse clipper to purchase, we would recommend looking through our clipper guide. If you do not have access to mains power and are out in the fields, our cordless Liberty Clipper which runs from a powerful and reliable Lithium battery will be the perfect option for you.

Keeping you safe by clipping means a lot to us at Lister, so ensure you have a firm ground to stand on to keep a good balance. This will minimise the risk of slipping and disrupting the clipping session.

Clipping a nervous horse 

Horses are lovely animals, but a kick is the last thing you want to receive from them when clipping, which often happens when they are nervous / clipper shy. Because of this, we would recommend hiring in a professional who can deal with new young or nervous horses.

If this isn’t possible, follow our steps to clipping a nervous horse.

Safety First! 

Put your safety first when clipping. Horses are hyper-sensitive animals, meaning they pick up your emotions and body language better than any human can. Therefore, make sure that you remain calm at all times and your body language is non-threatening.

If using a mains-powered clipper, make sure to have plenty of spare cable so you can reach all the areas you want to clip. Never wrap the cable around your hand, instead use our handy wrist strap that feature on our clippers.

Many people choose to use a circuit breaker when clipping, as this acts as a resettable fuse if anything is to go wrong and will stop the flow of electricity to the unit. Don’t clip a wet horse, as this can cause electrical damage and we would not want you ending up with a shock!

Be vigilant while clipping!

Keep an eye on your horse’s reactions, such as if they raise their head up or twitch. This is a sign they are unhappy with your clipping that particular area. If they do this, stop. It's common for some horses to enjoy being clipped in some areas, so try to locate this area first. When they show signs of distress when being clipped, return to this area with the clippers and allow them to relax.

Always keep a treat on hand, just to reward them if they have been good, as well as using plenty of verbal reassurance.

A few expert tips to achieve a perfect finish 

  • Clip with good lighting – this will allow you to spot any areas you may have missed
  • Don’t rush it – leave plenty of time to clip so your horse can have a relaxing experience
  • Use a good even pressure and aim to overlap the lines around 2cm to ensure no lines are visible.
  • Always wash a clean horse. It helps to do this the night before the clip so they have enough time to dry off.