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Guide to Grooming Tools

A handy chart of essential horse grooming tools.

By Elizabeth Moyer | October 2011

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Curry Combs
Grooming Tools 

Rubber Curry Comb
Made of rubber with textured nubs. Use in a circular motion to loosen dirt, shedding hair and "scurf” from deep within your horse’s coat and bring it to the surface where it can be given the brushoff. Best for use on large, well-muscled parts of the horse’s body such as the neck, shoulder and hindquarters.

Grooming Tools

Rubber Grooming Glove
The pebbled texure on this soft, flexible grooming glove is great for allover currying and is also gentle enough to use on the face and legs. At bathtime, it scrubs deep down dirt from your horse’s coat.

Grooming Tools

Massaging Curry
Massaging curries come in a variety of styles. Choose from firm rubber nubs or soft flexible "fingers” to help remove loose hair and massage muscles at the same time.

Grooming Tools

Metal Curry
The old-fashioned metal curry combs are rather sharp and should generally not be used on the horse’s body. Occasionally they are useful for removing caked mud or for shedding winter hair, taking care not to press too hard into the skin. These are best used to clean other brushes and remove horse hair accumulated on saddle pads.

Grooming Tools

Medium or Stiff Bristle Brush
Sometimes referred to as a dandy brush, this basic brush is good for general purpose grooming to remove dirt and dust from the coat. Synthetic bristles are durable and easy to disinfect, while natural fiber bristles are very effective. A medium brush works well for the majority of grooming needs. Select stiffer bristle styles to tackle tough jobs like dried mud and sweat  or a thick winter coat. Use care with the firmer brushes and avoid sensitive or bony areas such as the legs and face.

Grooming Tools

Soft Brush
Soft bristles are gentler enough to use on the legs and face, as well as the rest of the body. Ideal for sensitive, thin-skinned horses or as a finishing brush.

Grooming Tools

Body Brush
This short-bristled brush removes fine dust and dander from your horse’s skin and coat and really brings up a shine.

Grooming Tools

Face Brush
A small, soft face brush fits in the palm of your hand and easily navigates the contours of the face while giving a gentle groom.

Grooming Tools

Sheepskin Mitt
Soft wool fleece buffs your horse’s coat to a natural sheen.

Other Grooming Tools
Grooming Tools

Hoof Pick
Clean your horse’s feet daily, and before and after riding. From simple sturdy metal to various types of engineered grip handles, and the pick/brush combination, take your pick of hoof picks for the job.

Grooming Tools

Shedding Block /Grooming Stone
This rough, porous stone helps remove loose hair during shedding season and also can be used to remove sticky botfly larvae from your horse’s legs.

Grooming Tools

Wide Tooth Mane & Tail Comb
Sturdy, wide-spaced teeth tidy your horse’s tresses while minimizing hair loss and breakage.

Grooming Tools

Mane Pulling Comb
Use a small metal pulling comb to thin and shorten your horse’s mane to a uniform shorter length. By removing the longest hairs a few at a time, you’ll create a neat, tidy mane that lies naturally against the neck. (Never cut a mane straight across with scissors—this creates an awkward, chopped look.)

Grooming Tools

 Mane & Tail Brush
A hairbrush with plastic pin bristles is gentle on mane and tail hair.

Grooming Tools

You’ll want several types of sponges in your grooming kit for bathing and spot cleaning. Use a large sponge for the body and a smaller sponge for the face. You may also want a separate sponge for cleaning under your horse’s dock and between his hind legs.


Bathing Kit
Grooming Tools

A large sponge is the most efficient way to lather up your horse at bath time.
Use a sweat scraper to squeegee excess water from your horse’s coat after bathing or rinsing.
A 20-quart bucket is the perfect size to mix up suds and also totes your bath essentials to the wash rack.


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Reader Comments

Dara    Gainesville, FL

11/25/2012 5:00:23 PM

didn't know curry combs were made of rubber- since I have an allergy to latex rubber this is essential to know- I have now looked into getting a non-latex one- thanks!

Jess    Beaverton, ON

2/23/2012 11:00:58 AM

great info. thanks!

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