Which boots? Easyboot Trails vs Cavallo Simples
My horse is transitioning from shod to barefoot and it is time for some boots.
My primary goal for now is cleanliness/protection for everyday pasture/turnout. He is allowed to come and go into the barn as he pleases and chill in front of the fan on deep dry shavings.
Outside is whatever the weather deems. For the past couple of months the ground has been dry dry dry with the drought, but we finally received some rain so it is temporarily muddy and slick.
I don’t stall him as he is happiest if he can move around freely and I really want boots that won‘t rub or chafe him when he lays down or moseys around.
Riding is light (well under 20 miles a week) and I expect it to stay light until at least this time next year. The terrain is grass, some mud, and packed dirt with occasional pebbles. No real tough gravel or rocks at this time and I'm not riding on the roads yet.
Instead of getting a treatment or RX boot to keep the feet protected and clean, I wanted a boot that would serve both purposes over the next few years.
I’m looking at the Easyboot Trails and the Cavallo Simple Boots. I’ve been to their websites, taken the measurements, and researched back threads and am leaning slightly towards the Trails.
I like that Eastboots can be ordered individually as he has two different sized front hooves.
For now, I plan to get fronts to start and if I really like the fit/brand, then order the rears.
Since I haven’t used boots before (beyond soaker boots) I could really use some input. Thanks
First, it is recommended by EasyCare that a horse does not stay in boots, at liberty, more than 12 hours a day:-)
Second, EasyCare has several lines of boots. My own personal experience with them, gives them my vote --- hands down.
One of my horses foundered in early spring. The short version is 8 - 9 degrees rotation on the LF, 5 degrees on the RF.
He had been fitted for Boa boots clear back in 2008 but they sat, un-used in the closet all these years, due to some injuries of my own.
Out came the Boa's, in went partial pads, cut according to the instructions of the specialized farrier my vet recommended.
My horse has worn his Boa's every single day since March, on 22 very hilly acres, 9 - 11 hours daily.
1. The only time he shows any signs of rubbing is when he's within 3 - 5 days of a trim. He grows hoof really fast and with the founder, he's trimmed every four weeks.
1.1 I also rub hemerhoid ointment on his heel bulbs and coronet bands every night to keep them supple. WalMart's brand is way cheaper than the brand name:-)
2. The metal lacing finally broke three weeks ago on one boot. I shipped them off to EasyCare to be replaced. The fee was nominal and well worth the time because the boots still look brand new and the "tread" (literally) is still like new after all these months of daily wear.
3. Last, I am sold, sold, sold on EasyCare's fantastic customer service not only on the phone but in the turn around time to repair/ship the Boa's back to me<----how about a 24 hour turn around? Yep:shock:
I had originally bought the Boa's because they were what fit my horse AND that I could turn the dial with my arthritic hands.
EasyCare has some new stuff out there that is clamp-less and dial-less that I might look at if these Boa's ever wear out. I have them back but my horse has grown a tremendous amount of hoof, so the boots won't fit until the farrier gets here. Hopefully this afternoon but he's been behind schedule after being out of town.
We've FINALLY gotten a deluge of rain, so there's mud and soft ground. I'm letting this horse out without anything. If it hadn't rained I would've made pads and duct taped his hooves up:-)
Again, from a friendly and eager voice on the phone (Nancy) to the great folks in the Repair Department, to the many styles/models of boots available and how the Boas are holding up to daily wear & tear on 22 acres, EasyCare gets my highest recommendation:-)
I personally would not use boots for turnout. All will hold in moisture which will juist have you going backwards when the thrush comes into the picture. Both of the boots you are considering will cause rubs eventually.
I would go a different route. Hand walk your horse for 10 to 20 minutes daily on hard even surface such as concrete or asphalt. It goes a long way toward excelerating the sole toughening up. Try venice turpentine, durasole, farriers fix hoof oil or keratix hoof hardener on the soles.
Why do you feel the need for boots for turnout? Is your horse lame in the paddock? If not, it's not necessary or advisable. If so, Cavellos, Trails and other 'high profile' boots aren't suitable. You may get by with Epics, otherwise Therapy boots, designed to be used in this situation are suitable.
Thanks for the feedback, and thanks Walkin for the info about the EasyCare line and the people. Nice to know they are there for the customers.
We have been going through the various transition stages, some with tenderness, some without. The farrier I’ve been using does more of pasture trims as opposed to true barefoot trims and I‘m trying to find someone in my area that does them. I'm a bit rural and the choices of farriers of any kind are slim.
I have also been doing some reading on the use of boots through these stages, as well as hoof product like Durasole, or terrain changes like pea gravel.
Walking on asphalt or concrete daily is not an option as the road is the only place for that here and the rural neighborhood country roads (and especially the folks who drive them) are … um, unsafe to say the least. :wink:
It is one of the reasons why I’m looking into pea gravel for the upper dry paddock.
Despite my first post, I didn’t plan to leave them on 24/7, just during his more active daylight periods as needed for tenderness. Since I’m still recovering from injury myself, riding is light and will remain light and leisurely for some time so I wasn’t after hard riding boots just yet.
However, while riding may be light I do plan to start some more involved ground work and round pen work to set some foundations for more training down the road…. I didn‘t think therapy boots would work for this.
Since they are a bit spendy and I really don't want to put him back in metal shoes, I was hoping to get boots that will meet a variety of needs both as described above and whatever non-hard riding things that may arise.
The Trails and Simples, according to both their website and different barefoot websites seemed like they would fit the bill the best as an all around most useful boot for our needs over the next year.
Once we are more active down the road, we have found a true barefoot trimmer, I have more time for longer rides, and he has grown an entirely new hoof and is fully transitioned, then I planned to look into a strictly performance type of boot.
I had no idea there was a difference between a pasture trim and a barefoot trim. My mare had to wear shoes over the summer. My farrier trimmed her for going without shoes. She was a little tender the first day or two but her soles quickly toughened up. We didn't call it a pasture trim or barefoot then. The horse would be shod or trimmed.
If you're talking more like 8 hours at a pop, it would probably work well for what you're trying to do. I used hoof boots on a day on /day off basis a few months ago when I was trying to get healthier frogs on my horse. I used pads in Cavallo boots and it did seem to help. My horse gets rubs very easily, so I used baby powder around the lip of the boots to try to ward off rubs. In that case, I'd say either of those boots would work, whichever ever fit better.
oh good grief , turn the horse out in the pasture. He doesnt need boots. If he is limping around the problem is your jacked up farrier or your horse needs to see a vet.
It seems that there are about as many different ways to trim a bare hoof as there are riding styles now a days. :-)
I have used accredited Barefoot trimmers on previous horses in other parts of the US and there is a difference in how they trim as opposed to more traditional methods.
Pasture trims are more like the same trim the farrier does as if he/she is going to put on shoes, but doesn’t. Natural and Barefoot trimmers tend to use different philosophies and trim methods/styles since shoes are not going to be applied.
(My apologies if I haven’t used the terminology completely correct… I was out of horses for a few years and things have changed and become even more involved since then.)
Since pulling the shoes, my horse’s hooves have changed- sloughing frog, some bruises, changing shape, and a visible difference from the dietary changes. He came from KY so I have different hay, pasture and soils, plus I specifically made big changes to his diet.
Joe- he is not lame. While my farrier is not the most knowledgeable one I have ever worked with, he is not the worst either.
Loosie, the links below go a little more in depth on the transition/transitional stages you asked about.
I sure wished I had the boots to help him when he went through some ouchie bruises.
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