You might think being a dark bay and black horse would mean there would never be any confusion with a brown while tailed deer, but you'd be surprised. While most hunters are responsible and vigilant, there are certainly plenty of yahoos in the woods right now who should not be carrying a gun. And despite the fact the horses are fairly close to our house, I still protect them with blaze orange.
Because it does not naturally occur in nature, blaze orange is the standard safety color. I know folks who use orange halters or blankets, but I do not turn my horses out in halters (and if I did, I would use their leather halters) and they do not need blankets. Instead, I have been using a super cool product for over fifteen years now called Protectavest. I first bought this product when I moved my horses home in 2001, and the woman who makes them is (fairly) local to me, just an hour away. I picked up the vests in person, but it looks as though she does ship. While the store owner offers a variety of blaze orange products for all manner of livestock and animals, I personally prefer the vests.
The vests are made of a tough mesh that has withstood fifteen years of use from a variety of horses. This is the sixteenth year and they look great, if not a slight bit faded. I tend to only brush them off (or hose them) if they get muddy during hunting season and have only washed them once a year before I store them away for a year.
I don't remember paying $50 each (but realistically I have no idea HOW much I paid back in 2001, so there's that...), but even at that price, it is a great deal. The peace of mind I having knowing my horses are covered in blaze orange is priceless. Could someone still be a complete idiot and shoot my horse? Yes, of course, but at least this way I would have a much easier time suing their ass off if I had proof that my horses were clearly identified as NOT A DEER.
|Super flattering photo of Snappy with her vest this afternoon|