August 25, 2013

Tail Care for a Lot of Hair

Spa day!  Or, my horse has better hair than I do:

Doing his tail takes about an hour and a half total, so I only do it about once a month.  The flaxen color looks dirty if I don't get it really clean, so I've worked hard to develop a good process:

1. Put Goop (in the automotive section at Walmart) on his mane, tail and feathers and let it sit on the dry hair for 20 minutes
2. Rinse Goop
3. Shampoo mane, tail and feathers with Clairol Shimmer Lights for Grey shampoo
4. Rinse shampoo
5. Apply Showsheen or Vetrolin spray, allow to air dry until almost completely dry
6. Pick the tail, strand by strand

Picking the tail takes about 45 minutes, and I do it like this primarily to break up the curly dreadlocks that form.  When the tail is dry enough that the hairs can easily slide over each other, I get into a squat off to the side, drape the tail over my left arm, and with my right hand I pick the tail two or three strands of hair at a time with the first tine of a metal mane pulling comb.  I start at the bottom of the tailbone and make sure each set of two or three strands of hair are free and untangled all the way to the ends.  If there's a tangle, I don't force it, but gently work out the tangle with my fingers.  Tangles usually mean I've gotten more than a couple strands of hair.  This, and never brushing or combing his tail, prevents breakage, which makes his tail look fuzzy - and fuzz really stands out when your tail is many shades lighter than your body!

Luckily, Connor doesn't mind standing still for this process:


He's really filling out these days.  Magical 7th year.

Hey there, nice butt.


  1. Strand by strand? That takes dedication. His tail looks great!

    Thank goodness Harleys tail is black. ;)
    I do brush, but use a large paddle brush for people and always with detangler.

    1. Totally jealous of the black tail. Nothing makes you step up your braiding/hair care game more than having a horse whose coat is darker than his mane and tail. Of course, Harley's the opposite, are flyaways really obvious on him also?

    2. I would say "yes". I trimmed his tail at the top one time because thought it would make it neater. It looked terrible! Like he had wings. Flyaway is an understatement where his mane is concerned, but I like the wild look, so I let it go.

  2. I love Cowboy Magic's Yellow Out shampoo for the flaxen boys. We have a process too. I think you have us beat though.
    Owning greys has given me lots of practice.

    1. I don't think I've ever seen that before, but I'll have to find it.

  3. I used to pick my mare's tail and it did look awesome when I was done. Definitely the best method for tail care, but as you pointed out, so time consuming. :(

    Courage has such a short little dark tail that it doesn't matter yet. Yay!

  4. You have way more patience than me - but it sure pays off...his tail is stunning! Riva's - I just use that purple shampoo that stains my fingernails to whiten it up :)