My mare hates having nails driven in her feet. So 4 years ago after fighting with her big time and having to twitch her to to get her done, I decided to try to keep her BF vs adding the vet and happy juice to our shoeing appointment. Now mind you I don't ride endurance but I thought this forum would have the most Renegade experience.
My mare does very well BF for most of the year. However, during the long dry hot summer, I boot her. She has smallish feet and could have a thicker sole. So when it dries out in the spring and the rocks start coming to the surface of our arena, for my piece of mind and her protection, I put her boots on...every ride. We work primarly dressage with some pleasure/trail riding.
I initially took her to a farrier for sizing and fit and later had another dealer check the fit so I am pretty sure I have the right size. My question...her back boots fill up with sand. She does have a pretty short toe on her hind feet but the hoof easily takes up the width of the boot. When I am done riding, the back boots have at least 1/4 cup of sand in each one. It doesn't seem to hinder her. She schools great in the boots including lateral work (SI, HI and half pass) and walk pirouettes. Hind boots don't twist or budge. Is there any remedy for cutting down how much sand ends up in the boot or do I just need to chill and not worry about it?
I know one of her front boots blew out at the toe and now it doesn't hold sand at all (although the fronts might get a teaspoon of sand in them...not nearly the problem we have in back). I have a new pair in the wings but I am going to work those into oblivion first. I am afraid to go drilling holes in the boot...that is kind of an expensive experiment if it doesn't work.
First off...I'm so glad to hear they can be worn during dressage work. Our outdoor arena gets a little hard and rocky at times, so that is great to know. I ride dressage too, but usually only strap on the Renegades for trails. Mine usually have some sand after trail rides which doesn't bother me since I am mostly concerned about protecting the feet from the sharp rocks.
Maybe just chill about it If it doesn't seem to be bothering her, I think it's fine. My horse often has mud in the toe area after wet rides, and sand when we're on the beach. Once we go on the harder trail the sand seems to fall out. I think the open-back design on the Renegades works well in that situation.
Glad they're working for you! It would be interesting to know how long it took you to blow the toe out. I have more than 800 miles on one of my pairs of Renegades, but in our case we wear the tread off!
"Do your best, and leave the rest, twill all come right, some day or night" -Black Beauty
I have the same problem with my horse's back boots, to a lesser degree. My horse's back boots have a small gap at the top that allows sand to come in -- my theory is that because his toes are shorter behind, his angles are just a bit more upright, and the angle of the hoof doesn't match the angle of the boot. I don't get a lot of sand in there, though, so it doesn't really bother me. However, if you're concerned about it, on a similar fb post in the Renegade group, Kirt Lander said:
"If the tongue is not fitting tightly against the hoof wall, tuck the tongue in behind the flaps underneath. Also, a 1/4" to 3/8" hole can be drilled in the toe to help the sand get out."
Thanks all. I might try to drill some holes in toe.
The last pair of front boots for Kyra have lasted about a year and a half. I haven't really worn out back boots yet. The cables frayed on the first pair. I replaced them but finally, I got the parts to replace the cables. I just need to sit down and do it then i have an extra pair of back boots. The pair of back boots that are on her look really good a after a year and a half. Mind you, I usually only ride in them from like April/May until October. Since we work mostly in the sand box, I have no idea of mileage. But we do work hard. She is training second level and our sessions are probably 30-60 minutes. I also of course, ride her in them for trail rides. Kyra toes out some so her break over is to the outside of the toe and I'm sure past the thickest point of the toe of the boot.
The barn I board at is on high desert and lava rocks are a constant. You can prepare and pick rocks until you are blue in the face but once things dry out you deal with rocks. The boots seem like a decent compromise between naked bare feet and shoes for my dinky footed mare.
I try to dump my boots out at vet checks...he's probably carrying 1/4 cup of sand in each boot depending on the ride. But he's carrying it for up to 25 miles at a time. If it doesn't bother your horse, I think you are pretty safe!