Sunday, October 5, 2014


Burrs. . . I hate them. But Shyloh seems to love them. She is a burr magnet. 

Perhaps this is why. . .
Or this. . .

Ugh! All I know is that I spend the better part of our time together picking out burrs. Big burrs in her tail and little bit of feather. Teeny tiny burrs on her legs, stomach, sides, neck, chest, ears, under her chin, and nose. Clusters of burrs in her mane and forelock. And those tiny burrs, yeah, they are about the same size as ticks. 
I think she sleeps in them!
I don't even know how she gets them here.
Not only are the burrs everywhere, but they have become partially hidden by her hair as Shy begins to turn into a woolly mammoth for winter. So I have to untangle and pull the burrs out of her hair. It doesn't look like much, but they are small and have to be pulled one at a time. Luckily, Shy is very tolerant of the constant plucking of the burrs, except for the clumps by her ears.
Shy is totally okay with looking like a feral horse.
Shy's forelock has about three strands of long hair left, the rest is a fluff from being pulled out by the burrs. It is a sad, sad forelock for a Haflinger. Her mane is a twist of nastiness. And the tail. . .the tail that collects the large burrs, which then clump together and intertwine hairs and create a cluster of a mess is just awful. I cannot wait for the bugs to go away so I can put that tail up for winter.
More ugh!
So sad!
So many tiny burrs hidden throughout.
The burrs stick to her halter and to me. I have even found them in my hoodie pocket. 

But the mane and forelock. . . I am beginning to think it would be easier to roach and start over. Yes? No? Maybe so?

*All these photos where taken on different days.


  1. Yikes! Her mane is still so long and thick. If you roach it, it will take forever to grow back in (think years not months). When I saw your post on Facebook I thought she had torn her mane out. If it were me I would stick it out at this point. The vegetation should die soon. How big is her pen? Would the barn owners be willing to do some weedeating? Our woods look great where we've cleared out all of the undergrowth. It's like a park. :D Good luck!!

  2. The mane isn't too bad, just such a pain to dig through it getting all the burrs out every single time. The forelock is what I am most upset about. Shy didn't have a great one to begin with,now it is non-existent. And the pasture is about 15 acres, so the owner probably won't do anything with it.

  3. If it makes you feel better, Camryns forelock is never more than Kramer style fuzz! Seriously though, why aren't the BO's cleaning up the pasture?

  4. Those teeny tiny burrs are so much more annoying than the big ones in my opinion! Also, I know I'm late on this, but I love the new blog look!

  5. Maybe you could try Show Sheen? I know it dries the hair out but it makes it really slick so the burrs would be easier to get out and probably wouldn't tear as much. Maybe someone else knows of a better product that wouldn't dry her hair out?

  6. Oh no! Poor Shy! (Though she really doesn't seem bothered in the least by the burrs! Silly pony!)
    I say roach for the winter. You don't need to remove the entire mane: leave a couple of inches so that it stands up, if you want, though just taking clippers to the mane and taking all of it off can be easier than using scissors on a thick mane to leave the few inches. For Lily's, I shampooed her mane and then cut to where I wanted it with sharp scissors while it was still wet. Initially, it's going to continue to flop over due to the previous weight of the hair, but will start to stand up as it dries. Once dry, I evened it out so that it was a straight punk. You'll have to even it out from both sides of the neck with the scissors in this scenario.
    Here are the reasons why I would roach:
    - No more burr picking for you.
    - No combing/brushing mud out of her mane in the winter (since she loves to play the feral one so much!)
    - She has a pretty head and neck: she could totally pull off the roached look.
    - It will take her about 6-9 months to grow her mane to halfway down her neck. Been there done that with other horses. So her mane will be back by summer in time for her to have protection from flies. Not as long as it is at this moment, but she'll have a mane. :)
    - After roaching I've found the mane grows back thicker and stronger.

    You could also try just trimming it to hunter pony length: much shorter but still long enough for the mane to be able to fall over the neck. For this, you take a few inches off with scissors and then shorten it to the length you really want with a sharp blade. I really like these for this purpose:
    The problem is that you'll still have burrs. Less of them on a shorter mane, but you'll have more than if you just roach. I vote roach. :)

  7. I HATE burrs. Good ol cowboy magic should help get them out easily...or keep the mane and tail braided.


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