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With a new horsey addition to my yard in August I was hoping due to his size that he could get away with wearing some of my rugs that I already own which would result in me saving some money. However, despite being as big as my others he isn't particularly long in the back and is relatively short which meant all my other rugs being 6ft9 and 7ft (measured from base of the neck known as the withers to the top of the tail) my newbie measured in at 6ft6.
Obviously I didn't mind having to go out shopping and I normally head towards Weatherbeeta for my horse rugs as many of you will have read the reviews but as I had tried on a Weatherbeeta rug it was far too large around his shoulders and chest so knowing this I wanted to buy a Horseware rug. Horseware is an Irish company known for their rugs. They have a rug range under the name of 'Amigo' and is slightly cheaper than their main 'Rambo' range. The first rug I bought was the Amigo Medium 1200d Turnout as I managed to get it in the sale due to being a last season colour!
The rug differs slightly from the picture as at the front of the rug it is deeper around the front legs and has leg arches so the rug isn't completely straight as in the picture on Dooyoo. This is to allow more freedom for when the horse is moving in the field, horses like to be unrestricted and especially when out in the field they tend to have a buck or a mess around they can do so easily. The rug I purchased was in the java and black colour, the binding and straps are in red and the main body of the rug was in black which is an ideal colour for a rug!
The outside shell of the rug is made of a 1200 denier material (they also do a lighter version of the medium weight rug). Basically, higher the denier the stronger the outer shell of the rug actually is. Therefore, this rug is pretty strong and can withstand most things found in the field such as brambles which can pull the material. The outer shell is also waterproof which is the main essential thing for a turnout rug as you need to keep your horse dry! There is a tail flap which is at the back of the rug and protects the top of the horse's tail. This is meant to help protect the horse from the elements, it is made of the same material as the rug but just without the filling.
On the inside of the rug it has a soft black polyester lining which helps keep the horse warm and the coat nice and smooth. The fabric is also breathable so should the horse sweat up under the rug then it will hopefully wick away the moisture leaving the horse comfortable. The rug has 250g of polyfil and again like the denier weight the higher the polyfil the warmer the rug and this is classed as a medium weight rug by Horseware/Amigo. When you first buy the rug it has a lovely duvet like appearance but when it has been used on a more frequent basis the polyfil does start to compact down a little so it isn't as fluffy!
At the front of the rug there are two buckles which are also fastened by Velcro. The front buckles cannot be adjusted which is a downside for wide chested horses as if your horse has a really wide chest you may have to buy a separate expander. The rug is further fastened by two surcingles which are found on the one side of the rug. These cross under the horse's belly and fasten on the other side of the rug. These are fully adjustable but they cannot be removed as they hold the rug in place. Unlike the Weatherbeeta rugs Amigo don't put leg straps on the back of the rug (these help keep the rug secure as well) instead you get a thickish fillet string which is adjustable and removable. This goes under the horse's tail which just keeps the rug in place a bit more too and should be used on turnout rugs.
My horse first started wearing this rug in September when the temperatures started to drop as he was a bit weedy when I first had him I wanted to keep him as comfortable as possible. Because he isn't very wide (quite scrawny actually!) the rug suits him perfectly especially in the chest area, it wasn't big and baggy and fitted him just nicely. He is now currently wearing it under his heavyweight rug to give him a bit more warmth during the cold days. The polyester lining has kept his coat nice and shiny and it fortunately has not rubbed in the places expected such as the shoulders and the mane which is great! All the fastenings accept the front buckles are easily adjusted without much effort which is ideal.
Overall, I am really impressed with this medium-weight rug. It manages to keep my horse nice and warm without him overheating. It is also a great fit on him so maybe this is a rug more suited towards the slimmer of equines! I can't complain about it whatsoever it keeps my horse warm and dry which is everything you want in a turnout rug. 5 stars from me!
~ Useful Info ~
Brand: Amigo by Horseware
Price: From £40 upwards - shop around is vital!
Sizes: 5ft6 to 7ft3
Colours: Change from season to season
Sometimes, on the coldest of days or nights, horses need that extra bit of warmth even with a heavyweight turnout or stable rug.
With 150g fill this rug does the job perfectly. It can also be used on warmer nights in the stable if you just need a lightweight rug to keep the chill off your horse.
As with most Horseware products it is a well made, quality rug. The fit is excellent, I find it to be true to size and quite generous in depth. The outer is only quite thin so it isn't the toughest of rugs but this means it isn't heavy which is why it is so good as an under-rug.
There are two breast straps at the front with a single clip. This is fine if the fit is right for your horse, but it does mean there is no room for adjustment. My horses are deep in the chest/shoulder and the rug fits them fine so for me this is not a problem.
With cross surcingles and a fillet string I find the rug stays in place well. My only gripe is that the clip on the fillet string was broken when I first got the rug and, when I called to request a new one, I had to send them pictures of the broken one as proof! I sent the pictres but am STILL waiting for my replacement (2 months later) which is the reason this only gets 4 stars, otherwise it would have got 5.
At around £35 it is reasonable value for a nice rug which I hope will last for years so will be money well spent.