Your ultimate leg/hoof care?
 
 

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Your ultimate leg/hoof care?

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  • Smb boots over heat horse legs
  • Splint boots for turnout

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  • 2 Post By ~*~anebel~*~

 
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    10-11-2012, 02:29 AM
  #1
Weanling
Your ultimate leg/hoof care?

I am interested in hearing about other's leg and hoof care for their horses!

Please list your horse's disipline(s) and work load, leg and/or hoof related supplements you feed, type of boots/wraps you use for turnout, lunging and/or riding, other care (such as cold hosing, wrapping, hoof dressing, warm-up and cool-off periods when riding, etc.).

Thanks!
     
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    10-11-2012, 03:24 AM
  #2
Trained
I do dressage at a high level. My horses are fed a high quality, balanced mineral supplement. I do not believe that oral glucosamine does anything. Instead my horses are supported with IM Adequan and occasional IV Legend.
Horses are not booted during turnout and are in turnout for as long as possible, in as large an area as possible. They are conditioned over hard surfaces and uneven surfaces, however are only schooled or shown on the best possible footing.
Wraps and boots are used at a minimum if they are needed at all during exercise. And if so they always allow air flow to the leg.
Cold hosing or icing is done on very hot days, but is usually unnecessary.

Overall a good, "natural" management and conditioning program along with working closely with my vet is what keeps my horses sound, healthy and happy. Not fancy boots or oral supplements.
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    10-11-2012, 05:20 AM
  #3
Trained
Like Anabel, I don't give oral supplements or use boots. My horses are mostly turned out on pasture, free to come & go as they please into the paddock for hay. I have used IV Legend & probably will use it again next show season. I will occasionally hose down legs & use a liniment on hot days but that's more for me than the horse, I love the tingly feeling on my hands!
I school in sand arenas but I also take them over very steep terrain on the trails & ride on my deserted gravel road. Other that getting regular farrier & vet care, that is about it. I rarely use hoof dressings, unless I am showing in a soggy arena, holds up better than hoof polish in wet sand, otherwise I have no use for it. My horses' hooves are in great condition, never cracked or scaly.
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    10-11-2012, 05:28 AM
  #4
Trained
Oops, forgot to mention my horses' disciplines. One is really my hubby's, used for lessons & trails, the other is used for open shows, western & English, with some hunter jumping once in awhile.
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    10-11-2012, 06:42 PM
  #5
Weanling
Thanks! Anybody else?

I only have ours on AniMed's AniFlex right now. For my horse that is in work, I use splint boots in the turnout, splint boots and sometimes polos (hind) for lunging, splint boots and polo wraps (hind) while riding, and I am working to find a fit for overreach bell boots. For our other two horses (retired, and only ridden at a walk now), I had Smb Elites for lunging and riding, but am considering them for the new guy. Warm-up consists of walking at least twice each way around the arena (relaxing, bending, etc.) and cooling off consists of 5-15 minutes walking around the arena or facility (depending on how hard the workout was).

Unfortunately, where we board does not have the best footing, so I feel boots of some kind are necessary for protection and support.
     
    10-11-2012, 07:24 PM
  #6
Trained
Boots will not ever provide support and research has shown that using a boot like the SMBs actually traps heat against the leg and causes more degeneration in the tissues than would be caused by a striking injury were the boots not used.
As well a soft boot like the SMBs or a polo will not protect from a striking injury nearly as well as something with a hard shell.

A piece of fleece or neoprene is not going to withstand the forces that a horse's internal leg structures go through to provide any measurable amount of "support" to the leg. All that most boots serve to do is look pretty and overheat legs.

If a horse is properly conditioned and not overworked even in less than stellar footing you are still better off without heat trapping boots.
     
    10-12-2012, 12:28 AM
  #7
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*~anebel~*~    
Boots will not ever provide support and research has shown that using a boot like the SMBs actually traps heat against the leg and causes more degeneration in the tissues than would be caused by a striking injury were the boots not used.
As well a soft boot like the SMBs or a polo will not protect from a striking injury nearly as well as something with a hard shell.

A piece of fleece or neoprene is not going to withstand the forces that a horse's internal leg structures go through to provide any measurable amount of "support" to the leg. All that most boots serve to do is look pretty and overheat legs.

If a horse is properly conditioned and not overworked even in less than stellar footing you are still better off without heat trapping boots.
Interesting! Where would I find such research?-- Not doubting what you are saying, just looking to learn. I also have open front boots that sound more productive and purposeful.

What would your view on boots be while over fences (xc)?
     
    10-12-2012, 01:07 AM
  #8
Started
Like wares and anebel I don't feed any joint supplements. I experimented for 4 years on supplements with Casey using Gluclosomine, Majestys Flex Wafers (Devils Claw, Yucca) and BL Pellets (Gluclosomine, MSM, Devils Claw, Chodrotrin- sp) with over a year each supplement and no difference. Casey gets a little stiff (vet suspects minor arthritis) in winter.

I ride my horses on all different terrains on trails, clay to rock slabs and occasionally huge step- up rock stairs and don't use boots. First of all, the "worst" (the stairs, rock slabs) terrain I go on is when I am backpacking with my girls.. And riding for 6-8 hours with breaks every so often and going through lots of streams. Boots are not practical. Since it gets quite hot, their legs would overheat and be more prone to tendon injury. So, no to boots on trails.

I jump Candy and don't use boots right now. Why? She is a fantastic jumper over nonscary jumps. Scary jumps, she jumps weird or even stops, and I want her to learn to jump them and actually pay attention to jumping, rather than what she is jumping. So, yay, she learns a lesson when she falls on her face after doing the weirdest jump, because, she learns that maybe next time pay attention to jumping as she felt the pole whack her. At least she was listening and GOING over the jumps! I have open front boots, but, those would only work if she whacked the pole on the front of her cannon. On cross country, yes, I use brushing boots. Those jumps are solid, she cannot trip over them, they are not good learning to jump jumps, so if she whacks her leg, I want protection.

I don't use boots for my low level dressage either. Here is a great article on horse boots. You need an account to The Horse to read it, but if you don't have one, its a great site and I would highly recommend signing up for it. (dont forget, its two pages, click next at bottom of article)

The Horse | Researching Horse Boots
     
    10-12-2012, 07:43 AM
  #9
Weanling
Thanks for the input and the link!
Interested to hear from those who believe the opposite of this as well.
     
    10-12-2012, 12:55 PM
  #10
Trained
I now trail ride over rocky and rugged terrain - I use to gather cattle over the same type of ground. I do not jump my mare, I let her jump when she feels it is the easiest "way" to take a difficult and narrow arroyo or other obstacle. I use easyboots on the fronts, only. I use to use smb boots for protection - they prove to be more of a hinderance than anything. I use bell boots for turnout for those that overreach on occasion since it only takes "one" strike to bruise/damage.

I feed top quality alfalfa and/or grass hay (if available), laken lite, and nutrena safechoice (or the like) and a include shredded beet pulp in the winter.

When my buckskin got older, I messaged and did leg stretching exercises w him daily. In addition to hay he got Purina senior and msm chondroitin glucosamine suppliments after he was about 23-24. He had amazing feet and "young for his age joints" till the day he passed at 30. I never put leg protection on him - just front hoof boots, and iron shoes when he was younger.

During the summer I scrub w a pinch of tide, rinse, and dry the soles during "bath time", and I use a wax carving tool that is akin to a dental tool to remove every last spec of dirt. This probably does absolutely nothing...but it makes me feel good. :)

I like to keep it simple and effective. I don't know any of what I do qualifies as "ultimate", but it maintains healthy hooves/joints.
     

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