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Horse Blanket Terms and Meanings: Quick Reference Guide


To a newcomer to the world of Horse Blankets, all of the different equine terms that come up in discussions about horse blankets can be overwhelming or, at best, minimally confusing. To help educate you, we’ve provided this quick reference guide below for Horse Blanket Terms and Meanings.

Horse Blanket Terms and Meanings

  • Denier – This term, often shortened to D, refers to the thickness of the fabric used to make horse blankets. It is like how bed sheets are measured by thread count. The higher the denier, the more durable and water-resistant the fabric is. Horse blankets usually have a denier between 70D and 2400D, depending on how sturdy they need to be. If your horse tends to rip or damage their blankets, you should look for a higher denier, above 1200. This will help you avoid having to repair or replace your blankets in the middle of winter.
  • Fill – This is the amount of insulation that is sewn into the blanket to provide warmth. It is measured in grams and can vary from zero (for a sheet) to over 400 (for a very heavy blanket).
  • Turnout – This is a type of blanket that is designed for outdoor use. It is waterproof, strong, and weather-resistant. Turnouts come in different weights, depending on how much fill they have. They are usually classified as lightweight, medium weight, or heavyweight. Sometimes they are abbreviated as T/O.
  • Liner – This is a thin blanket that is meant to be worn under other blankets to add extra warmth. They are often used with heavyweight blankets when the weather is very cold. Liners are not waterproof and should not be used alone outside. See the chart below for more guidance on when to use them.
  • Sheet – This is a blanket that has no fill. It can be either waterproof or not waterproof. A waterproof sheet can be used for turnout, while a non-waterproof sheet is only suitable for indoor use. A non-waterproof sheet is also called a stable sheet.
  • Stable Blanket – This is a blanket that is made for indoor use only, such as in the barn, stall, or trailer. They are not waterproof. Some stable blankets have a quilted appearance, with horizontal stitching from shoulder to tail to keep the insulation in place. Stable blankets can be used as base layers under waterproof sheets for turnout.
  • Stable Sheets – Similar to stable blankets, but they are not designed to resist water. They are usually made of materials such as cotton or polyester.
  • Combo – A type of turnout blanket that has a neck cover attached to it. Some blankets have detachable neck covers that can be added or removed depending on the weather conditions.
  • Weight – Refers to the amount of fill and insulation that it provides to the horse.
  • Lightweight – These blankets that have up to about 150 grams of fill and are suitable for mild temperatures or horses with thick coats. A lightweight sheet can also be called a rain sheet, as it can protect the horse from rain or snow in cool weather. An unlined sheet can be used to keep the horse clean in warmer weather.
  • Medium – Blankets that have between 180 and 250 grams of fill and are suitable for colder temperatures or horses with medium coats.
  • Heavyweight – Blankets that are up to about 420 grams of fill and are suitable for very cold temperatures or horses with thin coats.
  • Lycra/Sleazy – Consists of a thin layer of lycra that can be used to keep show horses clean or to prevent rubs from other blankets. Sleazy’s come in different styles, such as full-body, full neck and face, chest, and more.
  • Quarter Sheet – A piece of fabric that covers the hindquarters of the horse and is used for horses that have been clipped or have less winter hair due to blanketing. A quarter sheet can keep the horse warm while warming up under the saddle.
  • Cooler – This type of blanket that is used after a workout to help the horse cool down gradually and dry off the sweat. A cooler can prevent the horse from getting chilled or sick. Perfect for providing an extra layer of warmth under a waterproof blanket or sheet.