Clean tack

Stand out from the crowd with clean tack! To prolong the life of the saddle you need to regularly clean and inspect it.

Not only does it look good, it will prolong the life of the saddle.

Saddles are not cheap to buy; so you need to regularly clean and check your saddle over for any signs of wear and tear.

You should be looking for, broken stitching and weak straps or tree damage.

Saddle cleaning

Cleaning a saddle sounds straight forward. If you want to do a good job, then follow the steps below.

Firstly, remove the stirrup leathers, and separate the leathers from the irons.

Next remove the stirrup treads and leave to soak in a bowl of warm water along with the stirrup irons.

Clean saddle and leathers with warm water first, getting rid of any dirt, mud or lumps of grease known as “jockeys”.

The jockeys can be removed by using horse mane or tail hair, which you should be able to find in your grooming kit before you clean your brushes.

Sometimes saddle soap can get lodged in the punched holes of the leathers and girth straps.

These can easily be removed using the end of a matchstick or skewer to push the soap out.

Once the saddle, leathers and leather girth if you use one, are free form mud and grease, wipe them over with a clean cloth, then you can clean them with saddle soap.

Always water the soap, not the sponge; otherwise, you will end up soaking the tack.

Buy saddle soap to clean tack

Soap the saddle using circular movements, making sure you clean all parts.

There are many different types of saddle soap, some of which, you don’t need to apply water too. I find this type easy to work with.

People have different ideas about cleaning the seat and front panels of a saddle. Some just wipe it over, as saddle soap will stain the jodhpurs especially light coloured, such as white.

The irons need to be soaked in warm soapy water. Once the stirrup irons are clean, they can be polished up for the finishing touches.

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Which type of stirrup irons should I buy?

What saddle do I need? – GP Jumping showing dressage etc

Saddle problems - Parts of saddle

Saddle care – Preventing damage

Western saddles

How to fit a saddle – Does my saddle fit?

Saddle slips forwards or backwards

Bridle parts – How to put a bridle on – How to take the bridle off

Horse training aids

How to choose the correct girth size – What type of girth should I buy?

Equine aids

The blinker bridle – Horse driving bits – Harness information

Parts of the driving harness – How to harness a horse – Different types of horse harness

Cleaning the bridle – Taking the bridle apart – Putting the bridle back together – Oiling the bridle

Saddling up a horse – Numnahs ans saddle cloths