While summer is a favourite time for riders for obvious reasons, it’s not always fun and games for our horses. While they don’t have to worry about the cold, the warm weather brings with it its own set of complications, one of which is flies and insects.
Read more: What is a fly mask & do you need one?
These bugs and annoying little critters can pose a real problem for your horse. Not only are they irritating (and of course it’s not easy for them to get rid of them), but they can also spread disease and cause other health issues, such as sweet itch.
That’s where a fly mask and fly sheet can come in handy, or in some cases essential. We’ve picked some of the best fly masks and fly sheets from our extensive range to give you a helping hand picking the right one for your horse.
What are the best fly masks?
Of course, what determines the best fly mask is up to personal preference, and as long as it works for your horse, then that’s all that matters. However, for ease, we’ve selected some fly masks that we think are particularly good…
LeMieux Comfort Shield Full Mask Nose & Ears
The Le Mieux Comfort Shield is fully breathable and not only protects your horse from insects, but it also offers UV protection. It features a super soft lambswool lining for extra comfort across the brow and nose, and the ears can stop bugs from providing further irritation.
Find out more about the Le Mieux Comfort Shield Full Mask Nose & Ears
Horseware Rambo Plus Fly Mask
Rambo by Horseware Ireland are one of the most loved equestrian brands around, and with this Horseware Rambo Plus fly mask, you can rest assured your horse is in good hands. Made from hard-wearing and durable fabric, this fly mask features large fitting ears, a detachable nose and adjustable closes making for a more comfortable fit.
Bucas Buzz Off Zebra Fly Mask
For a really eye-catching fly mask, look no further than the Bucas Buzz Off. It can be used on its own or in conjunction with the Buzz Off blanket (below). It’s fitted with an adjustable elasticated strap and made from a lightweight mesh that your horse is perfectly able to see through.
Find out more about the Horseware Rambo Plus Fly Mask
What size fly mask do you need?
In order to make sure it’s comfortable and flies don’t sneak in underneath, it’s important to ensure you have the right size fly mask. Here is a useful guide on how to measure what size fly mask your horse needs…
A = Between ears to middle of face
B = Bottom side of ear to middle of face
C = Between ears to between nostrils down center of face
D = Around middle of face to middle of jowl
E = Around the neck 2” behind ears at mid jowl
F = Side to side across brow 2” behind & below ears
What are the best fly sheets?
To accompany your fly mask, we’ve also put together what we think are some of the best fly sheets on the market from your favourite horse riding brands…
Bucas Buzz Off Zebra Full Neck
To go with your Buzz Off fly mask, you can also get the matching Bucas Buzz Off Zebra with full neck for added protection. The striking design means you won’t have any trouble spotting your horse out in the field! It features a really useful belly pad and tail flap which can cover more of your horse in areas that some fly sheets don’t.
Find out more about the Bucas Buzz Off Zebra Full Neck
Horseware Rambo Protector
The Rambo Protector is a more heavy duty fly sheet and will stand up to most of what your horse can throw at it. Made from two types of yarn for extra durability, it will stand up to rolling, scratching and galloping, and the fabric wicks moisture away from the horse to keep it cool. It also provides good levels of UV protection, which is handy when turning out on sunny summer days.
Find out more about the Horseware Rambo Protector
Weatherbeeta Essential Mesh with Belly Wrap Combo Neck
This excellent fly sheet from Weatherbeeta is soft for your horse but still hard-wearing. This lightweight sheet features a belly wrap for added protection and traditional side gussets. The closures will ensure it stays nice and secure, including the removable adjustable leg straps.
Find out more about the Weatherbeeta Essential Mesh with Belly Wrap
What size fly sheet do you need?
Just like the fly mask, it’s important you get the right size fly sheet so that it fits properly and is comfortable for your horse. The first thing you need to do is measure your horse. In the US, sizes are measured at the bottom of the horse from the centre of the chest in between the two front legs to the rear.
Once you have that measurement, here is a fly sheet size guide…
|To fit approx. hands high||11.2||12.0||12.2||13||13.2||14||14.2||15||15.2||16||16.2||17||17.2|
|Rug size in feet||4’0″||4’3″||4’6″||4’9″||5″0″||5’3″||5’6″||5’9″||6’0″||6’3″||6’6″||6’9″||7’0″|
|Rug size in inches||48″||51″||54″||57″||60″||63″||66″||69″||72″||75″||78″||81″||84″|