View Full Version : Bell boots vs Petal boots

May. 19, 2010, 11:39 PM
Horse just got shoes and pads in front (and about to get shoes in back). She has a short back and long legs so sometimes overreaches. Energetic OTTB who lives in a pasture and loves to run/romp/etc. What would be my best options for 24/7 protection (her heels and the shoe)? The idea of a petal boot seems nice in that if she breaks something you just replace the petal. On the other hand, I have heard they are noisy. I am looking for something that is good value for my money. Any wisdom on the topic would be greatly appreciated.

May. 19, 2010, 11:48 PM
I like the petal boots because it's really easy to make one boot fit all sizes of horses. BUT they are noisy, and they are more jumper-y or eventer-y. I don't really have a preference as far as actual use between the two. The petal boots can be kind of hard to clean...dirt/sand gets all over each of the individual petals, not just a quick hose off!

May. 19, 2010, 11:57 PM
Any particular petal boots that folks recommend? I wish I could get the purple westropp ones but it appears that they are only available in the uk and no one will ship to the us. I'm not so concerned about eventer/jumper looking. Can always go to standard bell boots if she needs them for a show (I would imagine bell boots would be permitted in a schooling show).

May. 20, 2010, 07:26 AM
I love petal boots - especially for turnout! I still have a pair of Westrops in the box that I'm saving... More recently I purchased from Bit of Britain http://www.bitofbritain.com/SearchResults.asp?Search=petal+boots&Search.x=13&Search.y=4 but I think other places carry the same brand. They do a fine job and none of my beasties have ever been bothered by the noise. I don't think it's a big deal at all.

May. 20, 2010, 08:07 AM
I am the opposite - I prefer just regular pull on bell boots. I have found the length on the petal boots I have tried are not as long as I would like to cover the sides of his hoof (almost to the ground as he tends to step on the inside of the opposite front foot and pull shoes off).

I go with the Italian pull ons - either from KL Select or Beval. During the "off" show season (Nov-May) - I use either the white or black ones because I find them more durable. Typically one pair can easily last me 6+ months of complete 24/7 wear - turnout and riding. During show season, he is in the gum rubber ones as they are easier for me to get on and off as needed as we can't show in them. I really like them - no rubs EVER and my guy has been in them 3+ years now non stop.

May. 20, 2010, 09:15 AM
I used gum bell boots for a long time and I had a few problems. IMHO, they tend to trap moisture more than petals, and I lost count of how many times my horse(s) came in with chunks taken out of the gum and even $$ Italian bell boots.
Maybe I've been lucky because petal boots have always been long enough for my beasties who grabbed the back of their shoes (a couple in bar shoes).

May. 20, 2010, 10:44 PM
i don't have a particular preference, but i find that both petals and bell boots make a substantial amount of noise (at least to my ears, as i do not normally use them)

May. 21, 2010, 03:55 PM
I think I paid $8 for a pair of L velcro bell boots that have lasted me 2 years.

I tried pull-ons and failed miserably to put them on. They would probably last longer (the velcro always comes off before the boot deteriorates) but at eight bucks I can actually afford to replace this tack :)

eta: I buy rubber, not the PVC ones

May. 21, 2010, 08:02 PM
The "Toklat" brand of bells are hard to beat for durability and ease of on/off. One flap of velcro (easier than the double strips that like to reattach themselves when you try to undo the second strip with your one useable hand), SUPER durable.


I've always used pull on gums to ride, but for turnout and ease of use for barn staff (aka "ME") I try to get all my "charges" in the Toklat ones. I make ugly faces at owners who want me to put on/take off Davis bells. They are killer! And pullons are all well and good until they get muddy and you have to pull them off, no avoiding getting nasty! I don't mind it with my own horse when I ride, but I'd rather not get covered in mud when I bring everyone else's horses in for the day! :winkgrin: No experience with petals other than hearing people coming from a mile away on the cross country...

May. 21, 2010, 08:45 PM
Petal boots ARE noisy, its very annoying. Plus its just a sheet of plastic between hoof and heel. I like the thicker rubber ones.

May. 22, 2010, 08:59 AM
They are not "just a sheet of plastic between the hoof and heel"! The petals are much thicker than your average sheet of plastic, they are each curved a bit, and they separate and allow air to circulate between the hoof and heel. IMHO, that is a total bonus for a horse that wears bell boots 24/7.
I have never used a rubber bell boot that didn't trap dirt and moisture. Petal boots cut down on that considerably. Don't get me wrong, I use and love my Italian bell boots - but not for 24/7 turnout....

May. 23, 2010, 10:01 AM
I really like bell boots. I had my horse in a pair from stateline tack that only cost 8 bucks, but were thin and ripped easily (I could actually rip them myself!)
so my trainer told me to go to doversaddlery.com and get the ones that are priced at $9.90 or something...they are much thicker. Just came in the mail yesterday...have not had a chance to slip them on yet.