Some uncommon and even bizarre pieces of tack and accessories can be found in the horse industry. Here are just a few of them.
While slinky lycra undergarments for horses to wear under blankets to prevent rubbing or protect wounds or braid jobs are not uncommon, full-fledged jammies can also be a fashionable and fun addition to your horse’s evening wear. Onesies can keep the bugs at bay, offer sun protection and help keep your horse clean before a show. Some horses find them itchy and will rub them off, and they can create a lot of heat, especially the darker colours. Also be prepared for stares and snickers from the other boarders. Around $200; prices and styles vary depending on manufacturer.
Certainly not a new phenomenon, stallion supports have been around for many years. Used mostly in the standardbred racing industry, they are made of soft rubber tubing and a breathable net ‘hammock’ which can provide relief to well-endowed studs whose testicles interfere with their gait, making them trot wide behind and affecting racing performance. Stallion supports can also prevent chafing in hot weather (which can also be relieved with an anti-chafing balm such as Body Glide). Abby Stables’ world champion trotter Triumphant Caviar, an Ohio-based stallion, wore one during his lucrative racing career. He set a Canadian record for stallions four years old or older at Mohawk Racetrack in 2010, so in his case the accessory did the trick. This equipment can provide an option to castration and allow the owner to share his horse’s talent as a breeding animal when it comes time for retirement.
Stallion supports are also seen, albeit rarely, in the jumper ring. The stallion Coco Bongo, owned by Artisan Farms and Torrey Pines Stable and ridden by Canada’s Eric Lamaze, wore one at a few competitions, but it did not prove very effective in his case and he was gelded in 2016. Katharina Offel’s mount Quebracho Semilly was seen sporting one in 2014.
Stallion Supports cost about $70; Greenhawk sells a similar Stud Support for $96.99, touted to “provide support without restriction.” Rebecca Roy, Greenhawk’s director of marketing, commented that there is not a lot of demand for them and any sales are at “track heavy” stores, so it appears that they are not often used outside of that industry.
Cover Your Butt
Some other standardbred-centric pieces of equipment include the Filly Suspension Butt Plug, which is designed for horses, especially fillies and mares, who suck in air during a race. It attaches to the girth with a snap hook and to the crupper by buckle attachment. The Butt Flap With No Shitz (!) does exactly as the name indicates – covers the butt so the driver does not get a facefull of hot manure coming down the home stretch.