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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My poor Flicka tends to over reach, and clipped herself pretty good sometime last night (nickel sized), so she got it washed off, and vetwrapped. It was already all pussy, and covered in sand (probably the reason it got yucky!):-(

Anyone else have a horse who over reaches? I'm trying to decide whether I want to keep bell boots on her all the time, as I don't want her clipping herself so badly all the time. Does anyone else keep bells on their horses even in the pasture, for those that have over reachers?

I will have to get a few more pairs of over reach boots, if I'm going to do this, as I only have one pair, and the boots will have to be washed fairly frequently if they are going to be on all the time :?
 

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i keep bell boots on my boy 24/7 because i cant afford if he pulls off his fancy shoes haha. he never gets rubs or anything like that. the only time he doesnt wear them is if their is a lot of snow/ice because the snow gets stuck in them & creates ice balls. i know a lot of people that keep them on all the time as well.
 

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My horse used to have bell boots on all the time, I just had the pull on ones.. when he went into his stall, we just flipped them up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I will probably put them on, then...right now she's got a pretty red vet wrapped foot...Lol! She was oh so thrilled about that!!!
 

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Does she over reach all the time or just when you ride? I have this problem with my boy Tatanka, he is actually off right now because of a ride a few days ago. I usaully use my bell boots when i ride but didn't put them on last time because we were going to the beach, and i didnt want them to get wet. My luck he overreached. You could get the rubber ones and just leave them on.
 

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i also have this problem with furia but she doesnt always over reach!! she can go a whole month without over reaching then 1 day i will go out for a hack and she can over reach iv been told its because shes young some days she will be slightly off balanced! but its very annoying haha
 

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Bell boots are a sensible precaution, but I'd advise doing some more work to alleviate the root cause. Have a talk with your farrier, there are a lot of small subtle things he can do while with trimming/shoeing to help.

One of my guys used to overreach and pull one shoe off periodically, and he lived in bells, until the farrier noticed from the marks and wear that he always stepped on the outside branch of the shoe. Shortening just that branch of the shoe slightly helped tremendously.

Sounds like your horse clipped herself on the bulbs of her heel (?) which is more serious, but still, there's a lot of things the farrier can try with trimming/shoeing to help.

Also be wary of leaving the bell boots on continously. If left on, especially if they're wet or dirty, they can cause rubs at the back of the pastern and on top of the bulbs of the heel that are worse than the overreach you're trying to prevent.
 

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yes my horse over reaches but i dont keep his boots on all the time, he doesnt seem to do it much when he isnt excersising. I know a horse that over reched badly, she had over reach boots on all the time but these boots didnt have fasteners on they were just a solid rubber ring, hard to get on! but i think it would be best if they were on her all the time.



they are made from a softer rubber to get them on and off easier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks all. She seems to do it mainly in the pasture, when she's running around. She does need a bit of a filing, so I will see if I can bevel off more toe on her rear legs, and see if that makes a little bit of a difference as well. This is the first time she's clipped her heel bulb bad enough to cause an injury. Right now she's got the only bell boots I have (thanks to Erin and Jasper), and they are the neoprine kind; no turn ones. I will look into finding more for her, as I will have to wash them often, I already know that.

I am wondering if her being part Walker makes a bit of a difference too? She doesn't gait, but has alot of forward reach.
 

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Over-reaching is a balance issue, mostly. My horse has a very large over stride in all three gaits and when he was younger tended to pull shoes and clip himself. As his training has progressed and his muscling has improved, he no longer over reaches and clips himself, even in the field. Where he used to have bell boots on, now he does not need them because he is in better balance.
My advice is to do a lot of dressage with an experienced coach. If you don't have the means for that then yes the farrier can help, and bell boots are a viable option in the meantime.
 

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Do you by chance do your own natural barefoot trims?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Do you by chance do your own natural barefoot trims?
Yes, I do my own trimming and have for years, but I was taught by a couple of really good farriers. Being where I was when I was growing up, it was almost necessary to learn, because you weren't always guarenteed to find a good farrier that wasn't 200 miles away...When I DID find one, I asked him if he could teach me how to do my own horses, should he not continue, or moved...turns out 2 years later he did move, to start a new business in a different state! Later on, I wound up boarding my horse at a farrier's house, and she continued some of what I needed refinement on; she even gave me new tools!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Over-reaching is a balance issue, mostly. My horse has a very large over stride in all three gaits and when he was younger tended to pull shoes and clip himself. As his training has progressed and his muscling has improved, he no longer over reaches and clips himself, even in the field. Where he used to have bell boots on, now he does not need them because he is in better balance.
My advice is to do a lot of dressage with an experienced coach. If you don't have the means for that then yes the farrier can help, and bell boots are a viable option in the meantime.
Thank you, I actually hadn't thought about her being out of balance so much, but it would make total sense; I got her three months ago, and she is just now becoming really comfortable doing draw rein and syrcingle work. Prior to me getting her she had been out of work, and had never been worked in ways that help develop the topline and balance.

The more I think on it I am also wondering if she clipped herself when she was laying down (she always has a nightly snooze)...so maybe she clipped herself then.

I don't and probably won't shoe her, for those who suggested it; I could afford it, but I don't see that as the most viable option, especially if she winds up ripping them out all the time; I am just now getting the last of her nail\shoe caused cracks she had from when I first got her. (she was shoed for much of her 'adult' life, til the previous owners bought her, and they only had her for a month, and didn't take care of her feet to get rid of the results of the shoes.) I'm not saying that shoes don't help some horses, but for my girl, who now has really tough feet, as opposed to being ouchy even on gravel, I probably won't go back if I don't have to.

:wink: And no, I don't want this to turn out to be a 'shoe vs barefoot thread either'...that wasn't my original intent...
 

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There are quite a few horses at the barn who have Bell Boots left on 24/7. I see no harm with that, so long as you clean under them on a daily basis.

I have had quite a few horses in my past who over reached, and what I did to alleviate the issue, was by having my Farrier "ROCKER" their back toes. Helps immensely :) Nelson is an over reacher as well, and I have my Farrier Rocker his back toes, and he does not over reach to the point of knicking his fronts, and I haven't had to use Bell Boots in over a year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
^ Yeah, I do roll her toes already, but may need to do a bit more, or more often and see what happens; I've not noticed her clip herself while on the longe line for a while, but she's also in a collected frame...it's in the pasture when she runs around like a total diva...head in the air, tail flaunting the poor quarter horses (She's part walker so can REALLY flaunt it! Haha), and totally uncollected, and thus unbalanced...but man can she MOVE!!! Hahaha! She puts the 19 mo old babies to shame when they get running!!!!

She was so cute this afternoon when I went to change her dressing, she just kind of held it up like "here it is change it!" Lol! I can only imagine what she'd do if she injured herself even more...probably be asking for martinis and chocolate!
 

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You might want to have someone come out and make sure your getting teh angles and the breakover correct. Most interference can be fixed with proper shoeing (or trimming).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
There is a guy who does come out (He did the yearlings last year a couple times) periodically just to see the other horses, and he says everyone looks great...he's done farrier work longer than I've been alive, and I've seen some of his horses, so I do trust his judgement. I should clarify, though, He works with other staff in the school I work at, so that's the main reason he comes out. He would trim if he felt the need too, as his services are voluntary, not paid; we are a non profit school.

He doesn't think she needs shoes to correct the over reaching, because he saw the shape of her feet when I first got her, and he's seen them as of current, and he said that she should get better in another couple of months; I'm still working at getting rid of some of the flaring, and toe length.
 

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Maybe you could post some pics.
 

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I thought from the OP that you had seen her clip herself. It could have been completely unrelated to gait or hooves. She may have slipped and stepped on herself or it could have been another horse that did it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I've seen her clip herself, well, heard it, in the pasture, and when I first got her, when I worked her on the lunge line...She's never clipped herself badly prior to her ouchy yesterday; she's not penned with the other two horses at night, and only for an hour or so each day, as I am letting the main pasture rest for the winter, rather than have the horses on it all the time. She likes to lay down at night, and occasionally during the day, so I really wonder if she nicked herself then when she went to get up, or something. I didn't see her clip herself yesterday, I just found the result...haha. Oh well, she's got booties on for now.

I will try to remember to get some pics...
 
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