take care of your horse's tail extension

How to take care of your horse’s tail extension


Some horses with wispy tails might be able to use a fake tail or tail extension in competition. Which gives you one more thing to clean and take care of!


  • This is a pretty simple process since most tails are made from horse hair. If you have a synthetic tail, check with the manufacturer for cleaning and storage instructions.


  • Your horse’s tail extension should be washed and conditioned and even slickified just as his own tail would be. Use high-quality horse shampoos and specialty horse conditioners.


  • Towards the top of the tail extension, the hairs are bound tightly. Avoid getting this area wet, or covered in shampoo. Any moisture here can create a bit of a rotten situation.


  • Avoid letting the tail extension soak in a bucket.


many fake horse tails


After a shampoo, and a wickedly thorough rinse, add your conditioner of choice.


  • Also a wickedly thorough rinse. Now let the tail extension dry, and pick through any tangles. Your fave detangler will do just fine. This lets your hand picking go easily and smoothly.


If your horse’s tail extension has been dyed, the color may run.


  • Totally normal, and you can use some colored horse shampoo to add color back in if you need. There are many color-enhancing shampoos to choose from.


  • You may also notice that some hair sheds, this is also normal. Excessive shedding may indicate a problem, though.


color enhancing shampoos

Let your horse’s fake tail dry well.


  • Don’t pack the tail extension away until it’s super dry.


  • You can use a bag, much like a bridle bag, as long as it’s longer than the tail. You don’t want any precious tail getting rumpled up.


  • You may also use a tube sock with the toes opened up if that works better for you.


Don’t forget to buy the right style of tail extension for your horse’s discipline.


  • Extensions come with tapered ends, like the hunters, or banged/blunt ends like dressage horses.


  • Also, know that some show organizations require that you declare if your horse wears a tail extension. This is usually more than just telling the show office. It might be part of your show entry. The FEI requires an official form to be submitted.

many colors of tail extensions


While you don’t necessarily want to use a tail extension every time you ride, your horse must be comfortable wearing one before you head to the show!

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For color-enhancing shampoos, you can try these out. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases, but there is no extra cost to you! I appreciate your support.

Equitone 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, Gold for bringing up golden and light colors.

Shapley’s ET-R 32 oz DS 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, Red for chestnuts, sorrels, and blood bays.

Shapley’s ET-B 32 OZ DS 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, Black for blacks, bays, and other dark colors.

Shapley’s EquiTone – Whitening 32 oz. – for gray and white tails.

Thank you!