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  1. #1
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    Default Info/experiences on hoof boots needed. UPDATE; MY BOOTS ARE HERE! :D

    So, I am going to try and keep my mare barefoot this summer for the first time since I bought her (which was only around 2 years ago, to be fair). Her feet have gotten a lot better since I've owned her, are growing better than they ever have before, and thanks to applying Durasole, she's sound on many more surfaces than she ever used to be. So I'm thinking it's time to give barefoot another chance.

    BUT, I don't really want to go into this 'unarmed'. I'm thinking of getting her a pair of hoof boots for any terrain she isn't 100% comfortable on just yet, and hope that eventually we won't need the boots at all. I've been researching and finding info on all the kinds of hoof boots I could find, and have narrowed it down to two options; the Easyboot, or the Easyboot Epics.

    I'm not sure if the Epics will work for my mare though, as she has an old injury on the front of one of her fetlocks that is a lump. I'm thinking the gaiter on the Epics either won't fit with the lump, or they will rub. But I'm also worried that the regular Easyboots won't stay on, as I've heard that's why the Epics have basically replaced the regular Easyboots.

    So, I need information and experiences with these boots, specifically the regular, no-gaiter Easyboot! My main concerns are the boots coming off, or the boots rubbing either her pastern (in the Epics) or her heel bulbs (in the regular Easyboots).

    (Oh, and if you're going to try and make this into a gigantic childish argument like all the other hoof-related threads, DON'T bother posting. Thanks. )
    Last edited by sublimequine; Mar. 5, 2008 at 11:32 AM.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  2. #2
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    Default

    I use BOAs on my guy and I absolutely love them. I hate the dang caps though. I've lost like 3 of them already. That being said, last year was the first time since I've had him that he went barefoot. He's usually shod all four. He stayed sound (yea!) and when he was ouchy or on roads (gravel) he'd wear the boots.

    I couldn't really help you with your choice between the regular easyboots and the Epics. My decision was between the BOAs and the Cavallo Simple Boots... still love the look of the Simple Boot too.

    Good luck. Too bad there isn't a way you can try both and return which ever don't work out... but then they'd be "used" and that probably wouldn't work... sorry that I'm not much help.
    Proud owner of Gus & Gringo.
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  3. #3
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    Oct. 26, 2007
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    Default Easyboot Epics

    I have been using the easyboot epics since mid December. At first they were not so easy to get on, but that only lasted a few uses. Now they're super easy, we haven't lost one, they have stayed on in the mud and snow and my horse is sound and happy
    Who is your trimmer? I'd work with a barefoot trimmer to determine the best fit for your horse.

    Oh, we've had no issues with rubbing either
    Last edited by TBrescue; Feb. 27, 2008 at 03:02 PM. Reason: mta no rubs



  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by appychik View Post
    I use BOAs on my guy and I absolutely love them. I hate the dang caps though. I've lost like 3 of them already. That being said, last year was the first time since I've had him that he went barefoot. He's usually shod all four. He stayed sound (yea!) and when he was ouchy or on roads (gravel) he'd wear the boots.

    I couldn't really help you with your choice between the regular easyboots and the Epics. My decision was between the BOAs and the Cavallo Simple Boots... still love the look of the Simple Boot too.

    Good luck. Too bad there isn't a way you can try both and return which ever don't work out... but then they'd be "used" and that probably wouldn't work... sorry that I'm not much help.
    I like the look of the Cavallos as well, but I wanted something a little 'slimmer' than the Boas or Cavallos. I think the Easyboots and Epics are a little less cumbersome.

    TB; I'm definitely going to get some help in fitting the boots, but I actually won't be able to turn to my normal farrier for that as he's a traditional guy and doesn't have experience with the boots. I'm hoping the natural lady that also does many horses at my barn will be willing to measure my mare for me, even though I'm not a regular client of hers. She's an extremely nice person, so we'll see.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  5. #5
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    Hey - Easycare, Inc. just updated their Bargin Bin with last year's Easyboot Bare stock. Boots in all sizes are 50% off!

    www.easycareinc.com then go to "Cool Stuff" or whatever it's called, then Bargin Bin.

    I use Epics but just ordered 3 full sets of Bares. At that price who wouldn't?!?

    I learned a lesson about gaiters that hopefully I can help other people avoid. The company suggests that the gaiters MUST be as TIGHT as humanely possible. That's Bull Sheeeet. They say the gaiters are so soft and stretchy that it's physically impossible to overtighten them. More Bull Sheeeeet. After 2 nasty pastern rubs, I started attaching the gaiters just tight enough so they didn't flop (in other words - very loose.) I've never lost a boot, and never had a rub since doing it this way. Before this I was wrapping the feet and ankles with vetwrap, using cotton tube socks, powder, vaseline, you name it. Finally I said screw it and just afixed them loosely. No more problems.

    I've used Old Mac G2s, and Epics, and love them both. The Easyboots can be a real &*%$#(*&%$ to get on the first couple of times, but they do break in and it gets MUCH easier. The first time I was covered in sweat and wheeled off every cuss word I've ever known. But now it takes 30 seconds tops.

    I absolutely LOVE hoof boots. Cant imagine ever going back to shoes.

    The one suggestion I can't make strongly enough is to buy the 12mm EVA foam pads to go inside the boots. This loads the entire sole and provides superb shock absorption and load distribution. Otherwise you have the hoof walls and possibly the frog (if it's good) laoded inside the boot. I think Pete Ramey calls this periphreal wall loading, and suggests avoiding it at all costs.

    You can just see horses go aaaaaaahhhhhhh when they step down inside a pair of padded boots.

    Another suggestion - bend the cleat down flat inside the boots, or cut them off alltogether. The little plastic cover dealies that come with the boots are useless. They fall off after the first ride, and the hoof walls get chewed up. It can do serious damage to the lateral wall if you don't eliminate the cleats before the first use.

    As much as I love the Old Mac's, they are bulky. And so are Boas. The Easyboots are slim fitting, tight to the hoof, and don't cause interference.

    Another tip - you can very easily rasp down the boot toe and toe quarters to ease breakover. I start the breakover roll back about 1" into the boot and roll toward the toe with my rasp. Be very careful not to take off too much material. If you boot up your horse, then work them on pavement for 10 minutes or so, you can tell where they want to break over. Then you just help it along. This helps override any extra mechanical leverage the boot might add to the foot.



  6. #6
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    Default

    I use EasyBoot Bares with UpBuckles and tapers (you can buy both on EasyCareInc.com and add yourself). This makes them somewhat similar to the epics, but I like the tread on the Bares better (and I was hoping to use them with the bungees, but they were too hard to get on for me personally).

    I would try the Epics (or Bares) first and see if the gaiters work. The Epics are really just regular EasyBoots with gaiters, so if they don't work you can always just take them off. (I've been told Bares don't really work without gaiters.. or glue, but thats a whole other topic ) The problem with NOT using gaiters is that many people lose boots that way... they make a big difference in them staying on. Also, make sure you're buying the smallest possible size that will fit the hoof (and measure carefully). You might also be able to put a replacement gaiter that's for a boot one size (or two?) bigger on the bigger fetlock. Not sure how it would fit (the holes are all predrilled, but the gaiters are easily replacable, and the sizes are close) but you could certainly ask EasyCare and order what they recommend.

    Also consider the Old Mac boots. They are a bit more bulky (less so with the newer G2's), but some horses don't seem. They are easy to put on, stay put, and come just a bit above the hoof itself... they might be fine depending on where your mare's injury is.

    One last thing you might want to look into is SoleGuard. I haven't tried it, and I don't believe anyone here has, but it's a new product for barefoot horses from the makers of EquiPak. http://www.vettec.com/65/products/soleguard.html You might ask your farrier about it, most are familiar with EquiPak and their products, so he might know about it already or be able to advise you on it.



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lauren! View Post
    I use EasyBoot Bares with UpBuckles and tapers (you can buy both on EasyCareInc.com and add yourself). This makes them somewhat similar to the epics, but I like the tread on the Bares better (and I was hoping to use them with the bungees, but they were too hard to get on for me personally).

    I would try the Epics (or Bares) first and see if the gaiters work. The Epics are really just regular EasyBoots with gaiters, so if they don't work you can always just take them off. (I've been told Bares don't really work without gaiters.. or glue, but thats a whole other topic ) The problem with NOT using gaiters is that many people lose boots that way... they make a big difference in them staying on. Also, make sure you're buying the smallest possible size that will fit the hoof (and measure carefully). You might also be able to put a replacement gaiter that's for a boot one size (or two?) bigger on the bigger fetlock. Not sure how it would fit (the holes are all predrilled, but the gaiters are easily replacable, and the sizes are close) but you could certainly ask EasyCare and order what they recommend.

    Also consider the Old Mac boots. They are a bit more bulky (less so with the newer G2's), but some horses don't seem. They are easy to put on, stay put, and come just a bit above the hoof itself... they might be fine depending on where your mare's injury is.

    One last thing you might want to look into is SoleGuard. I haven't tried it, and I don't believe anyone here has, but it's a new product for barefoot horses from the makers of EquiPak. http://www.vettec.com/65/products/soleguard.html You might ask your farrier about it, most are familiar with EquiPak and their products, so he might know about it already or be able to advise you on it.
    You know, I didn't even think of just ordering a bigger gaiter for the lumpy leg (that sounds funny ). Or even just adjust the gaiter on that leg looser so it's just kinda sitting around the lump, and not tight against it.

    Here's a photo of the lumpy leg, for reference;

    http://img213.imageshack.us/img213/1327/joyrshoehv6.jpg

    (Note: This is an old pic, she's barefoot now.)

    I would like to have gaiters for her if I knew they wouldn't rub or interfere.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  8. #8
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    Apr. 9, 2002
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    Oh... I think the gaiters will be fine! They don't sit that high. I'll see if I can find a pic of mine on my horse... if not I'm sure there's one on the web somewhere or from another poster. I vote order the boots of your choice with gaiters... I doubt you'll have a problem. I like the Bares alot... and they seem to be on sale right now too ... thought I would recommend the UpBuckles unless you really really want no buckles on the front... the bungees are low profile, but a PITA to get on!

    Ok... here's one from EasyCare's own site... http://www.easycareinc.com/_System/L...ti_boots4.html



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lauren! View Post
    Oh... I think the gaiters will be fine! They don't sit that high. I'll see if I can find a pic of mine on my horse... if not I'm sure there's one on the web somewhere or from another poster. I vote order the boots of your choice with gaiters... I doubt you'll have a problem. I like the Bares alot... and they seem to be on sale right now too ... thought I would recommend the UpBuckles unless you really really want no buckles on the front... the bungees are low profile, but a PITA to get on!
    Yeah, I have experience with the Epics, and I find them surprisingly easy to work with. So I'd go with the buckle over bungee.

    Does anyone have experience with Grips? I heard that they actually AREN'T good for hard/solid ground, only for softer/slick stuff. I'd want something that can at least do SOME of both.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  10. #10
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    I wouldn't use grips for everyday riding because of the very agressive traction. Of course G2s have agressive traction too but the rubber of the boot is softer so it wears down a little faster. I also helped it out a bit with a rasp. Too much traction is just as bad as not enough.

    One of mine has a lumpy pastern too and the gaiter is fine as long as its loose.



  11. #11
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    Another vote for the Epics or Bares. Call Easy Care and ask for Debbie Schwiebert. Tell her your needs and concerns, she's wonderful to work with.Too, I'm pretty sure the boots are 100% guaranteed now , though maybe not those on sale.They are a super company to work with and if Debbie is not available, any of the reps can steer you in the right direction.



  12. #12
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    I've never been an easyboot fan, although I've tried on multiple horses. I am now using these: www.hoofwings.com . They are easy to put on, stay on better than other brands I've tried (easyboots and Old Macs) and they have great customer service. Mary will let you try, try and try until you find a perfect fit. I've never used Cavallos.
    Barbaro Cultist, Metabolic Nazi



  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auventera Two View Post
    I wouldn't use grips for everyday riding because of the very agressive traction. Of course G2s have agressive traction too but the rubber of the boot is softer so it wears down a little faster. I also helped it out a bit with a rasp. Too much traction is just as bad as not enough.

    One of mine has a lumpy pastern too and the gaiter is fine as long as its loose.
    Yeah, I was looking through the Easycare website and it said not to use Grips on hard surfaces, at risk of injury. That's kinda scary.

    It looks like unless my mare fits into a size 0, I may have the Bares as my only option. Not my top choice, but at that price, I can't complain. Are they really that much harder to get on than the Epics?
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by I'm EBO View Post
    I've never been an easyboot fan, although I've tried on multiple horses. I am now using these: www.hoofwings.com . They are easy to put on, stay on better than other brands I've tried (easyboots and Old Macs) and they have great customer service. Mary will let you try, try and try until you find a perfect fit. I've never used Cavallos.
    I looked at those, but the price is WAY out of my range, and they seem to come up higher on the pastern than the Easyboot line. Which I wouldn't really care about, except for miss lumpy leg.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  15. #15
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    If you look at my site, I have a hoofboots page and put a couple on there that aren't so mainstream.

    I haven't used the Bares yet so I'm not sure about the degree of difficulty.

    As for the person who loses Old Macs and Easyboots - I can understand the Easyboots. But really, to throw an Old Mac you'd have to lose the whole foot with it! The way the nylon/velcro strap figure 8s around the pastern, I have no clue how it would even be physically possible to lose one. LOL. I sometimes worried that if a horse got a foot caught in something, they'd just be stuck there because that boot wasn't comin' off! I rode through everything with the G2s and never lost one. But of course, every horse is different and every situation different, so I suppose anything is possible!

    0s are pretty tiny. That's what my Arab wears. She was in a 00 last year.

    When I called EAsycare yesterday, they only have about 40 of the Size 1s left, but had tons of 0s left. (In the Bares, I mean.)

    I was all excited for their new boot coming out, the Edge. But yaaack. It has a hose clamp on the front to fasten it. I'm not interested in that. So I don't think I'll be trying them out.



  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auventera Two View Post
    If you look at my site, I have a hoofboots page and put a couple on there that aren't so mainstream.

    I haven't used the Bares yet so I'm not sure about the degree of difficulty.

    As for the person who loses Old Macs and Easyboots - I can understand the Easyboots. But really, to throw an Old Mac you'd have to lose the whole foot with it! The way the nylon/velcro strap figure 8s around the pastern, I have no clue how it would even be physically possible to lose one. LOL. I sometimes worried that if a horse got a foot caught in something, they'd just be stuck there because that boot wasn't comin' off! I rode through everything with the G2s and never lost one. But of course, every horse is different and every situation different, so I suppose anything is possible!

    0s are pretty tiny. That's what my Arab wears. She was in a 00 last year.

    When I called EAsycare yesterday, they only have about 40 of the Size 1s left, but had tons of 0s left. (In the Bares, I mean.)

    I was all excited for their new boot coming out, the Edge. But yaaack. It has a hose clamp on the front to fasten it. I'm not interested in that. So I don't think I'll be trying them out.
    A 'hose clamp'? I've never heard of it.

    When is the Edge coming out? I heard 2008, but when?
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  17. #17
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    Don't know when they're coming out. I applied for dealership status and the results of that is pending. Hopefully I'll be more in the loop if that goes through. I think a couple of the other trimmers here are dealers, and they might know more.

    Something similiar to this:
    http://www.kshoseclamp.com/p_images/...hose_clamp.jpg

    If you view Karen Chaton's blog and photos, she has photos of the boots in there somewhere. The clamp isn't exactly like that, but is similiar. That just freaks me out.



  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auventera Two View Post
    Don't know when they're coming out. I applied for dealership status and the results of that is pending. Hopefully I'll be more in the loop if that goes through. I think a couple of the other trimmers here are dealers, and they might know more.

    Something similiar to this:
    http://www.kshoseclamp.com/p_images/...hose_clamp.jpg

    If you view Karen Chaton's blog and photos, she has photos of the boots in there somewhere. The clamp isn't exactly like that, but is similiar. That just freaks me out.
    I couldn't find anything on the Edge boots in her blog. Perhaps it was taken down.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  19. #19
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    I can't access any of that stuff here from work - it's blocked.

    But another thing you can do is go on www.endurance.net and then go to Snapshots. Look for events that say they were photographed by Karen Chaton. If you load her albums, she takes tons of boot closeups. You can easily find the Edge in there because the clamp style is unlike what's on their website.

    I can't remember which rides, but there were a couple where the Edge boots were tested out by riders, and the photos were in there.



  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auventera Two View Post
    I can't access any of that stuff here from work - it's blocked.

    But another thing you can do is go on www.endurance.net and then go to Snapshots. Look for events that say they were photographed by Karen Chaton. If you load her albums, she takes tons of boot closeups. You can easily find the Edge in there because the clamp style is unlike what's on their website.

    I can't remember which rides, but there were a couple where the Edge boots were tested out by riders, and the photos were in there.
    Found em! They certainly look interesting. They look a lot like the Bares.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



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