Rainy but warm? Wet but humid? Not sure which rug to put on? Let's talk about condensation and perspiration
It's that time of the year again – a mixture of warm, cool, windy, rainy and humid – and horses are starting to gain their winter coat. It's hard to pick rugs because your horse runs a little hot – so a 'No Fill' seems like a 'No Brainer' right? Let's dig a little deeper and see why maybe this might not be your best option in damp and muggy weather.
Most synthetic turnout rugs have a fill or lining of 50g up to 300g, and this alleviates the problem of condensation, as it assists the rug to breathe and keeps the horse’s excess perspiration off its coat.
If you are using an un-lined rain sheet (ie No Fill) in humid, extended wet or cold conditions, you may need to use it in conjunction with a light cotton under rug or similar, with good moisture-wicking properties (think summer rug or our Wickaway underneath). The horse’s perspiration and condensation needs to be transported away from their skin.
It’s much like you wearing a raincoat against your bare skin: With your body heat and perspiration, you will soon become very clammy under the raincoat and any moisture that enters – through openings like the neckline or wrists – will condense under the raincoat. You’ve probably experienced this yourself – you end up very damp underneath your coat in a short span of time. However, if you wear a long-sleeved t-shirt or shirt in general underneath, you help to alleviate the problem – the shirt acts to wick your own sweat and condensation away from your skin.
Never underestimate how much condensation will accumulate under your horse’s rug in a short span of time. A horse can perspire up to 1L per hour! So next time it's warm but rainy and you want to keep your horse dry, try adding a lightweight under layer to help wick away the moisture from their bodies.
We hope you found this helpful!