One of the main reasons for clipping is to avoid excess sweating and subsequent loss of condition, another purpose of clipping is to aid the comfort of the horse during the winter months. The longer and coarser winter coat usually starts to grow in Autumn. This extra insulation causes the horse to sweat more during work, which if not dried off may cause chills.
A clipped horse is also easier to clean and groom .
Styles of clipping
Three common clipping styles are illustrated below. The darker brown is the unclipped hair.
The more hair that is removed the less tolerant the horse will be to the cold and wet. So the hunter clip is only suitable for horses kept stabled all the time, immediately after the horse is exercised a rug should be applied to avoid chills.
The blanket clip is similar to the hunter clip only the hair on the back area is left to provide a little more protection for the kidney and rump areas.
The trace clip leaves most of the exposed areas of the horse unclipped and is suitable for horses turned out during the day and stabled at night. You will notice in the illustrations above that the hair is removed from the 'midriff' area of the horse, these areas are the most prone to the accumulation of sweat.
Whichever clip is used we must compensate for what hair is removed by ‘rugging up’
The Canvas or New Zealand Rug is designed to protect a horse from wind and rain. It is used mainly for horses that are out (not stabled) and in work, or for horses that live in cold weather climates. Traditionally made of canvas or flax, and lined, the rug is very warm and weatherproof.
Click here to learn more about 'Rugs and Rugging '  Clipping