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Gear Guide Tried & Tested

Fly Rugs

Our testers put a range of fly rugs to the test - see what they thought here.

Our testers: Horse&Rider staff tested the following fly rugs over the course of three months on their own horses.

The products

WeatherBeeta ComFiTec Shield fly rub tried and tested by Horse&Rider

WeatherBeeta ComFiTec Shield

Includes an ear hood, elastic wither insert, and lined shoulders, mane and tail flap.

Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 3in

The verdict: A stylish design that offers ears-to-tail coverage.

“The rug looked really good and felt good-quality. It fitted well when first put on, but could pull back if the Velcro at the front came undone. I also found the hood sometimes slipped off my horse’s ears when he put his head down. However, I really liked the full neck cover and belly flap for extra protection.”

Premier Equine Bug Buster fly rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Premier Equine Bug Buster

Breathable fabric with an antibacterial lining over the shoulder and neck.

Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft 3in

The verdict: A well-designed rug that’s secure enough for playtime antics in the field.

“The rug provided great all-over coverage. It was well cut, meaning it stayed in place and allowed my horse to move freely, although the sizing was generous and he comfortably wore a size smaller than usual. It did exactly what it says on the tin and I’d buy it again.”

Bucas Buzz-Off full neck fly rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Bucas Buzz-Off Full Neck

Fine, lightweight mesh that blocks insects and provides UV protection.

Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 2in

The verdict: A robust rug with innovative fastenings and a design that keeps bugs at bay.

“I really liked this rug. It gave great coverage, especially with the extra belly protection, and the magnetic catch on the front fastening was really handy. My horse seemed very comfortable in it and after a whole summer of regular wear it’s still completely intact, ready for another year.”

Horneare Amigo Bug Rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Horseware Amigo Bug Rug

Soft fabric with sun-reflecting properties and a mane lining.

Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft

The verdict: Comfortable protection for horses who are less sensitive to flies.

“It’s a lovely, lightweight rug and my mare didn’t overheat, even in really warm weather. The neck was a great length and I liked the long tail flap. It sat really well and didn’t pull back or slip. It doesn’t have a belly wrap, but was perfect for my mare who isn’t particularly irritated by flies under her tummy.”

Masta Ripstop fly rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Masta Ripstop

Strong, 1,000 denier fabric with a stretch panel in the neck.

Sizes: 4ft 3in – 7ft 3in

The verdict: Secure and easy to use, with a colourful design to help your horse stand out. 

“The rug seemed effective and looked smart. It was true to size, but a little snug on my chunky part-native horse. The fastenings were secure and easy to do up, but I found the Velcro straps sometimes snagged on the mesh and pulled threads loose. However, I’d buy one again.”

HKM Anti-fly rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

HKM Anti-Fly

Hardwearing fabric with a Lycra ear covering and extra-long tail flap.

Sizes: 4ft 1in – 7ft 3in

The verdict: Sturdy yet breathable fabric, making it a good choice for hot weather.

“The fabric felt quite thick, but my horse didn’t sweat and it was breathable on very hot days. It also stretched well. The fastenings were easy to do up, but I found the ears could slip off, which made the neck slip round. When the ears were in place, it provided good protection.”

JHL Ultra Fly Relief Combo rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

JHL Ultra Fly Relief Combo

Lightweight fabric that filters the sun and has a stretch panel for freedom of movement.

Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft

The verdict: A colourful, lightweight rug that offers freedom of movement. 

“It looked smart and I liked the pop of colour. However, I found that because it’s stretchy it could slip if worn for long periods and my horse got a bit sweaty on very hot days. It was easy to do up, really lightweight and offered reasonable fly protection.”

Shires Tempest Zebra Fly Combo tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Shires Tempest Zebra Fly Combo

A zebra-print pattern with lining at the chest and on all seams to prevent rubbing.

Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 3in

The verdict: Smart and simple, but still offers plenty of insect protection.

“This rug was true to size and the generous depth offered plenty of protection. The fittings were easy to do up and it stayed secure, but the neck sometimes slipped down when my horse raised his head. I liked the zebra print and overall it’s a really smart rug.”

Thermomaster Zebra Combo fly r=ug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Thermomaster Zebra Combo

A fixed-neck rug with a zebra pattern to confuse insects.

Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft

The verdict: A funky design that stands up well to plenty of wear.

“It’s still in great shape after a summer of wear and my horse seemed really comfortable in it. It stayed secure and the print was really fun. I liked how lightweight the material was, and how easy it was to put on and take off. It’s extremely good value for money.”

Derby House Classic Fly Rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Derby House Classic

A light, breathable rug with a Lycra wither insert.

Sizes: 5 – 7ft

The verdict: A budget rug that offers lots of great features.

“This was a useful rug, especially for the price. However, I found it could slip back if my horse wore it all day. Other than this, it was great – I really liked the long tail guard with the elastic loop to put the tail through and the coloured binding was very eye-catching.”

Mark Todd Ultra Combo fly rug tried and tested by Horse&Rider

Mark Todd Ultra Combo

Made from tightly woven mesh, it reflects UV rays and has anti-rub shoulder pads.

Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft

The verdict: A tough rug that’s built to last, ideal for horses who spend lots of time outdoors.

“It fitted my sensitive horse well and didn’t cause any rubs or pressure marks. He lives out all summer, but the rug stood up well to lots of wear, proved very durable and offered effective protection from insects. I’d highly recommend it.”

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