Hoof Boot Question
I've been considering trying hoof boots for my horse for a little while and I was wondering a few things.
-Does mud and gravel get in them and if so does it irritate the horse?
-Have any of your horses ever lost one while galloping or riding through deep mud?
-Do they break easily?
-Can your horse's feet still toughen up through them?
-Is it true that they have good grip?
NeOn Zero, I'm also looking into hoof boots for those moments when I feel my horse might benefit. The club I ride with have a few that use them and what I've seen and been told is most prefer the old macs. The reasons are they stay on through even the muckiest of mucks and all terrains. The boots allow water to exit, and some use the gaiters for added comfort and holding power. They have good traction and are easy to put on. They have no metal parts that come in contact with any part of the hoof.
I'm sure there are other very good boots, and you'll hear about them here (that's what I love about this forum, all the great info).
Glad you posted this thread, I might hear about another brand that I hadn't considered before buying mine. :wink:
Bumping this up
I use BOA boots with gaiters on my TB. I only put them on during riding (or if the arena is really gravelly during training), so his feet still get a chance to toughen up. I have not lost one when he is up to speed or in mud. The water drains out through little holes in the bottom and the gaiters keep stones or mud out. He will get some sand in them but easily shakes out. They are great for walking on concrete and he has good grip in them even in mud.
My only thing is, when it gets closer to a time for a trim his boots dont fit. :P
Are Boa boots better than Easyboot Epics?
I used easyboot bares (recommended by friends) all last year in mud, stream, sand, gravel. You name it. They were just great. Gator prevent it from being lost even in deepest mud. What I really like about easyboot is the fact that boot sits below the top part of the hoof (with gator wrapped around the leg). If the boot is fitted correctly it's very tight around the hoof, so stones/gravel won't get in. And because it's below the the hoof hairline horse doesn't care if sand gets in. All you have to do is just to wash it off after the use. No need to break in or anything: I just ordered, received and placed on my horse very next day. In fact I do trailer my qh in boots sometime.
I just started using easyboot epics. My farrier helped fit them to my horse which was a great help. She had several different sizes to try so I didn't have to do the guess the size game. Like kitten_val I like that they tighten at the top of the hoof instead of above the coronet. When they fit correctly nothing can get down inside the boot. We have been in some very deep sucking mud well above the top of the boot. They stay on well and give good traction. We have also ridden on paved roads and there is no slipping which was one of my concerns.
When I first started using them I was a little paranoid about them coming off. I kept leaning over and checking to be sure they were still there :lol: We've pretty much traveled at all speeds and in lots of different terrains, so far so good :D
once you get your measurements, give the folks at Easycare a call. They are very helpful at helping you chose the right boot.
From the easycare web site-
Phone M-F 8-5 MST
I have used hoof boots mostly for hoof protection when the horse has an abscess. I found that moisture collects in them quite easily and makes the hoof and flesh around quite soft and susceptible to infections and rubs. You really have to make sure you get something that fits and does not rub. I find most of the boots rub.
I have tried easy boot, old mac and another local brand. I found the only one that stayed on was the old mac, but they do have a rubbing problem because the straps cross right over the balls of the horse's heels and in the front right above the cornet band.
I have not used them for trail riding though.
I know the early easyboots had major problems with staying on. I have some friends who started using them years ago and always traveled with duct tape to keep the boots on :lol: I think they have improved on them since then.
How interesting. I guess I've been lucky. I didn't even adjust the bares when I received them and they sit below the coronet (didn't trim or anything). NEVER had a rub from the gator. However Jemma has perfect shape for easyboots (from what I was told) - her hoofs are oval, so the measurements gave same size for width and length while for Kiara (who has round hoofs) width and length differ by size.
But I do agree keeping them on for long time is not healthy (unless you stay dry). I usually put them on (dry of course), trailer, ride for up to 2-3 hours and get them off before trailer back home (put bell boots instead).
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