Items

Forums
Horse Shoe Alternatives
 By Winniefield Park   •   18th Sep 2016   •   1,711 views   •   0 comments
There is a lot of controversy about whether horses should wear shoes. Like many of you, I think there is a time and place for them, and that many horses who wear shoes probably donít need to. Iíve seen horses that have worn shoes their whole lives that have been problem-free and sound. Iíve seen horses go from unsound to sound through the use of proper shoeing. Iíve seen trim jobs that have lamed a horse for weeks. I've seen messes caused by shoeing. Should your horse wear shoes. I think the answer is... maybe.

Now, my girl has been a lady of leisure this summer. A busy schedule and horrifically hot weather have cut my riding time. I have no particular goals in mind right now, so sweating it out under a helmet hasnít been appealing. But, with summer fading, and nice cool mornings and evenings to look forward to, Iím feeling more motivated and even thinking about what I can do next summer - like trying out some training level dressage tests. For us, showing means that we leave the sandy soil of home to encounter goodness knows what. You donít always find the best footing at small shows and I know my horse goes better in shoes.

But it almost seems silly, not to mention expensive, for a horse to wear shoes 24X7 just in case you encounter pebbly ground for a few hours somewhere else. Would some sort of other hoof protection be suitable for us?

Glue on shoes cut down on the damage done to a hoof by nails. But since nail holes arenít really my concern, and they are more pricey than metal shoes, theyíre not a consideration for me. A few years ago, I was sent a trial pack of a product called Hoof Armor. This is supposed by like a paint-on shoe. The liquid is spread on the hoof to protect it from wear. Back when I tried it, it had to be sealed on with a heat gun.

There was no way I was going to take a heat gun to the bottom of my horseís foot, so we tried sealing it with a hairdryer - a recommendation by the manufacturer. Now, youíre probably thinking that a farrier applies really hot shoes to a horse's hoof, so hot they produce stinky smoke. But a heat gun doesnít focus the blast of heat to the narrow band of insensitive hoof wall material. It would hit the mores sensitive sole too. Within a few hours of application, the liquid wore off like cheap dollar store nail polish. Maybe their new and improved product works better. But, I wouldnít try it just before a trail ride over rough ground where you need to absolutely depend on foolproof hoof protection. This stuff just didn't work for me.



It wasnít that long ago that Easy Boots were the only game in town. These are still widely used. They are durable, and dependable. Theyíre also really hard to put on! If you have wimpy fingers like mine, you might not like the ratchet closure system. I know how I struggle to close my ski boots with the same type of closure, so forget it! They do have a new style boot that looks much easier to use. They are advertized as not requiring any strength to open and close, utilizing wide bands of Velcro brand hook and loop fastener to apply.



Many hoof boots use a hook and loop fastener system. There are different qualities of hook and loop fastener. Some are pretty frail, and other types can be very difficult to unfasten once theyíve meshed. Cavallo boots are made with a hook and loop fastener, as are Old Macs which seem to be popular with the endurance riding crowd. My biggest worry would be for a boot to come undone mid-test or even when Iím riding at home and having my horse freak out because a monster is now attached to her leg.

A brand new, not quite on the market hoof protection system I recently noticed is called the Megasus. These boots, or rather horse running shoes, claim to click in place. A band of heavy duty hook and loop type fastener adheres to the hoof. Then, clips that run around the outside of the hoof attach into the fasteners. The very flexible design of the Megasus shoes allows for adjusting and replacing them very easily. When the horse is not actually wearing the shoe, the fastener stays adhered to the hoof wall. Right now, Megasus is in development and will be part of a Kickstarter campaign.

There are so many choices and so many new improvements. Hoof boots and other protection have taken advantage of new technology and knowledge. Clearly, I have a lot of research to do.
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Winniefield Park
 More News by Winniefield Park
Gaza Riders Back in the Saddle After COVID Lockdown
11th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
The COVID19 lockdown meant many of us werenít able to ride, or were not able to ride as we normally would. Like many organizations around the world, the Palestine Equestrian Federation placed restrictions on the types of activitie ...
Kentucky Derby Horse Drugging Probe Ongoing
10th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Bob Baffert, trainer of five Kentucky Derby winning horses is going for a sixth win. But, his efforts are shadowed by reports of horses in his care are again testing positive for performance enhancing drugs. Details are sparse as ...
RavenSide Stud TBS Home of Multiple Top Ranked Horses
5th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
RSS Break Even and RSS Identity Thief are both top ranked horses belonging to the same stables. RavenSide Stud TBS was established in 2017 and is ranked at 113 with 49,459,023 PB in earnings. Currently, there are three stallions s ...
Horse Dismounts Police in Protest Turned Ugly
4th Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
During a peaceful protest that turned ugly in London, UK a police horse bolted after being pelted with debris by violent demonstrators. Flares, bottles and sticks flew as the crowd was pushed back by mounted police officers. One o ...
Horse That Survived Kentucky Horse Shooting Foals Healthy Pinto
3rd Jul 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
You might remember a story from early last winter about twenty horses in Eastern Kentucky that were shot and killed. The few survivors were taken to Kentucky Humane Societyís Willow Hope Farm to regain their health and eventually ...
Stop Petting Wild Horses
29th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Beach-goers to the Outer Banks are being asked to stay clear of the wild horses that live there after a photo of a woman appearing to pat a wild horse has surfaced. This is not an isolated incident as tourists visit the well known ...
Funny Horse Fruit Taste Test
28th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Some horses eat anything and will eat everything from anchovies to zucchini. And some are extremely picky and act like youíve poisoned them if you put anything but hay and grain in front of their noses. Have you ever tried a taste ...
Jim Gaffigan Horse Comedy
27th Jun 2020   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Jim Gaffigan pokes fun at the Triple Crown, from the costumes and pageantry, to owners, jockeys and trainers. He then takes a humorous trek through the horse world, exploring horse breeds, horse people, horseshoes, riding and the ...
  View All News by Winniefield Park
 
©2002 - 2020   PonyBox LLC Create Account Advertise Terms Privacy Contact Us
205 Members Online 267,616 Registered Members 2,737 News Articles 11,635,303 Unique News Article Views 276,868,843 Website Views