Yes, Bentley has been shaved.
It wasnt easy. We had to start with the needle. He didnt like that at all, and first try he reared up and bonked his head on the ceiling. Second time he took of running back to his stall… I imagine this is much like a small child who gets scared, runs to their room and hides under their covers. Third time, we used a lip chain and lots of reassurance, and he didnt even bat an eye when the needle went in. Silly horse!
We moved him to the crossties, keeping the lip chain in to be sure. Started up the clippers, and he still wanted nothing to do with it. After following him around for a while, we eventually were able to settle him with me clipping, lee holding the chain and Laura (our wonderful helper! She did the needle) holding his neck. After that, he calmed enough that Laura could go and ride, and he pretty much fell asleep while I clipped the urgent areas.
After about 30-40 minutes, he started coming back around… his head was up and his eyes were alert, but he was still letting me clip. He would get nervous each time I would switch sides so there was some more chasing, but he would settle down after 30 seconds, let out a big sigh, and let me continue on. I was very pleased with this and as a result we had a full hour clipping. The pile you see in the photo is 1 of 2, as when we had to chase, we ended up filling the whole barn with fur. We were able to get a sort of chaser clip done before we killed the blades. It was a good place to stop anyway because he was alert and tolerating the clippers. Taking them away is a reward for him being such a good boy.
I analysed my clip job yesterday and while it is functional, it’s not very pretty. He has a very tufty belly and a big patch I missed. Also a semi-tufty neck. One side also goes up much farther than the other. Good thing I don’t show! Oh well. He’s relieved of heavy sweat, so we are happy with our first try.
To finish things off, we put on his stable blanket… which had been used for 2 days as a turnout blanket. Much to our disappointment when we put it on, there is a gaping L shaped hole about a foot and a half long and a foot high. Sigh. Only 2 days it took him. We told him clipping was his punishment for shredding blankets, and he is going to start wanting them… take care of the new one buddy!