Horse Grooming Brushes

By Terry Golson

Can you go into a tack store and come out empty-handed? What is it you can’t resist buying? For some people it’s saddle pads. For me, it’s brushes.

Grooming is not only a means to an end – love that shine on a horse – but it’s a process that enables me to ask my horse how he’s feeling, and also a hands-on way to make sure that all is well. It’s a relaxing ritual for both of us.

(In the winter, it’s only relaxing because I spritz him and my brushes with my anti-static spray.

Read this blog for the recipe. It works!)

My grooming box is full.

I have 3 types of curry combs (depending on the level of dirt, shedding, and how sensitive Tonka is feeling determines which one I use.) I have one brush that knock off mud. I have several body brushes that get out dandruff and cleans to the skin. There’s a finish brush with soft bristles that brings out the shine and removes dust. I have two smaller brushes for the face. There’s a wide-toothed Weaver Leather Mane and Tail Comb for the tail. A hoof pick, a tick remover, and scissors.

I went saddle shopping last week. I love independent tack stores that have used gear departments. Log Cabin Tack has a knowledgeable sales staff and a good selection of used saddles. They also have an aisle of brushes. I didn’t get a saddle, but I did get a brush. You can buy things on-line, but grooming tools, for me, require trying out. When brush shopping I take my time. I test how it fits in my hand and feel how the bristles work.

I found this brush. Perfection! It will replace my finish brush which has bristles that are too long and loose to do the job properly.


I have my favorite brushes, but so does Tonka. I’ve stopped using a few that he objected to. That two-tone blue brush in my kit is supposed to be a body brush, but Tonka only allows it on his legs. When I introduced this new brush I didn’t anticipate a problem. It’s as soft as can be, but when my horse felt it on his shoulder and realized that it was a new brush, he gave it a hard look. Tonka had to think about it some before he gave it the okay.

This is how Tonka’s coat looks in winter. That healthy shine is all I need to be motivated to buy yet more brushes.

Do you have something in your grooming box that I don’t? I have enough brushes! What else am I missing?

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