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I bought a weatherbeeta orican rug and was extremely disappointed with the quality of the rug and the subsequent customer service. The rug was on my horse for around 30 minutes before he rolled, a hind leg strap detached and the rug twisted. In his struggle to free himself a surcingle also detached from rug. I know rugs get damaged and expect repairs from time to time. However I have never seen a rug disintegrate so quickly in such a short space of time. Weatherbeeta's customer service basically said"tough" and refused to accept there was any fault with the rug. I am NOT impressed.
All I feel like I'm reviewing at the moment is horse rugs but due to having three horses I have amassed a lot of rugs over the years! I try and keep them until they have no life left in them as they are expensive but choosing a rug from a good brand tends to mean that they are of better quality and last longer. All but one of my rugs come from the Weatherbeeta brand. A company who has been selling rugs globally for over 25 years.
Rugs come in different weights and depending on the time of the year a rug needs to be suited to that time of year. For example in the cold months a heavy weight rug is needed in the cooler months maybe a medium weight or light weight. Rugs are determined by the amount of polyfill in them which is measured in grammes so basically more polyfill the heavier the rug.
One heavy weight rug which has done a fantastic job of keeping all my horses warm and dry over the past couple of years is the Weatherbeeta Orican Combo rug. Now I know my horses can't wear all their rugs at once but I don't like putting a damp rug back on a horse and prefer to put a dry one on so generally through the winter I have one drying and at least two spare so they can wear a dry one.
The Orican Combo rug has changed in the past two years mainly just down to its overall style but its function stays the same a great heavy weight rug with a neck cover. The Orican Combo is not the heaviest rug that Weatherbeeta makes but with 300g of polyfill (360g is the heaviest) it certainly will keep your horse warm and snug. It boasts a 210 denier hygienic Oxford lining which doesn't rub your horses hair so no worries about those horrible bald patches on the shoulders, chest or withers. The outer fabric is incredibly durable and at 1200 ripstop denier it is incredibly tough. Weatherbeeta use their "ripstop" technology by modifying the weft in the fabric enabling it to contain any rips or tears that may happen.
Even though the rug is a heavy weight which makes it quite a bit heavier than lighter rugs the fabric is incredibly smooth and soft making it a lot lighter than the old fashioned canvas rugs.
The rug comes complete with two surcingles which are fully adjustable. These cross under the horses belly to make the rug more secure. There are two elastic leg straps at the back of the rug which again are adjustable but these are also removable should you not want them as some people prefer to opt for a fillet string instead. I prefer the leg straps as they keep the rug well positioned and as they are elasticated they move well with the horse. The front twin chest buckles are reinforced and are adjustable which is great for horses who are slim or big in the chest.
The neck rug is attached to the main rug although you can get a detachable neck version of the rug. It has two Velcro straps which secure the neck rug but don't expect it to be slim fitting to the neck. The neck rug is big enough to fit most shapes and sizes of horses necks so if like me your horse has a slim to normal sized neck there is a gap between the horses neck and neck rug itself which can I guess cause a draft! The neck rug has to be done up at all times when the horse is out in the field as leaving it unfastened can cause bit of danger to the horse especially if its windy.
As I said above Weatherbeeta have slightly changed the design of this rug over the years. The original Orican (which I own) has a wrap around tail flap which is incredibly large and covers a lot of my horses tail and bum, meaning he is better protected from the elements. The tail flap on the new Orican combo is a lot smaller in comparison and I personally think it should be changed back to how it was before. However, the one change I do like with the new rug is the shoulder gussets are larger meaning the horses movement is not restricted.
The Orican Combo is heavily waterproofed and so far none of my rugs have ever leaked and my horses remain nicely dry. I have however decided to get them re-waterproofed every year as they get older and have more wear to them. The taped seams inside the rug also do a great job of keeping this rug waterproof.
The Orican Combo can be bought online and at most Weatherbeeta stockists. It costs around £80.00 which I think is incredibly good value for a heavy weight rug. For 2010 the available colours are navy/ green and chocolate/ blue but you can still get the older version of the Orican on some online equestrian stores where you can get it in blue and denim and probably slightly cheaper. The rug starts at 5'0 and goes all the way up to 7'3 but not all colours come in all sizes but as they all end up getting muddy I don't find this a big problem!
For me this rug is a great addition to any horses wardrobe and is very useful when the weather turns really cold and miserable, it has never let me down yet. Although I have noticed the once original quilty feel to the rug is now not as quilty as it was which generally is due to fair usage and the padding tends to reduce. However, the rug still keeps them warm and dry.