Taking care of your real sheepskin fleece gear like saddle pads or girth covers is super important. Not just for you, but for your horse's comfort too. Check out these easy tips on how to keep that fancy fleece fresh and prolong its lifespan.
Give your sheepskin fleece a quick clean-up after every ride. First things first, detach your saddle pad from your saddle or remove the cover from the girth. Give it a good shake and a brush down to get rid of dirt and fluff up those damp fibers. Some folks swear by a sturdy dandy brush, but others prefer a fine-toothed pet grooming brush to get their fibers back to their fluffy best.
Any damp fleece items should be hung to dry but keep them out of direct sunlight and away from artificial heat sources. You could even place them on your covered saddle rack, fleece side up.
Only wash your real fleece goodies when it’s totally necessary and use a mild cleanser that's designed for this purpose. Pop your items in the washing machine, cold water, gentle cycle, and let them hang out to dry in a shaded, airy spot. Avoid heat sources like sunlight or radiators like the plague - they'll dry out and harden the leather backing and cause shrinking.
Here's a quick rundown of the do's and don'ts of cleaning genuine sheepskin fleece:
- Do wash genuine fleece in cold water.
- Do use a stiff brush to keep your pad clean and fluffy between washings.
- Do let genuine fleece air dry naturally, away from direct sunlight and heat sources.
- Don't wash genuine fleece with regular laundry detergent.
- Don't put genuine fleece in your tumble dryer.
- Don't stash a damp fleece saddle pad under your saddle between rides.
If you're in the market for a new fleece pad for the upcoming show season we recommend the EquiFit Essential® Hunter Saddle Pad. Showcasing a traditional look with an updated design; the Essential Hunter Pad does its job so you can do yours.
So there you have it, folks! Taking proper care of your sheepskin fleece gear can be as simple as a quick brush down and a cold wash with the right cleanser. Remember to always let your gear air dry in the shade and avoid those nasty heat sources. With these easy steps, both you and your four-legged friend will be strutting your stuff in comfortable, clean, and fluffy gear all show season long. Happy riding!