Bell boots, are also called overreach boots, are protective boots put around a horse's pastern to protect the the bulbs of the heel and coronary band during hard or active use such as barrel racing, roping, etc. They can be made of all kinds of different materials with little no turn gadgets of just velcrow on kinds that can spin. Sometimes horses that clip themselves come about due to unbalanced feet. A good farrier can correct this for you. But as far as boots go, I like the no turn bell boots by professionals choice. I use their smbII sport boots too. good products.
I have recently seen the little "quarter boots" that are gum rubber but really ONLY cover the bulbs of the heel, with a thinner expanse of rubber that goes across the front of the horse's hoof.
I would call THESE "over reach boots" as being exclusive of the "Bell Boot" category.
I suppose you could say that any boot designed to protect the backs of the horses' front feet, which are not designed in a "bell" shape, could be considered "Over Reach Boots", but they all pretty much do the same job.
Quarter boots are overreach boots out of the bell boot category. They also don't stay on very well. A few years ago, they had a resurgance in popularity on the harness track and some favoured using them over bell boots as they are easier to put on.....track was littered with quarter boots that popped off. The people that liked quarter boots then went to velcro bell boots...and then THEY were all over the track.
Founder of the Dyslexic Clique. Dyslexics of the world - UNTIE!!
My horse with shoes wears bell boots all the time, which go around the foot and heels/bulbs of heel so that he doesn't rip his shoes off by stepping on his shoe with his hind foot (or with the other front foot ) Silly warmblood.
Pro: he lives in them, cheap, helps keep shoes on. Helps a "forge-er"--a horse that makes the clic clic clic sound when you ride protects coronary band in trailer--some people haul in them if they don't have full shipping boots
Con: some can give rubs, doesn't help a horse that is a high over-reacher
My barefoot OTTB horse is an over-reacher--when he gets on the forehand (like in a canter-trot transition that's not very balanced) he's been known to take a chunk out of his low pastern area of his front foot because his hind foot hits. So when I ride him, he wears pro choice overreach boots which cover the lower pastern and bulbs of heel, but not the foot. As he becomes more balanced through the transition, he may need them less. The velcro around the front and have padding behind the pastern. He doesn't live in them though--just use them for riding!
Pro: actual padding for protection, helps when you see blood in pastern areas due to an over-reach
Con: I don't think you're supposed to turn out in these--they might "turn" on you, which they aren't made to do like bell boots, cost is higher
bell boots are made of rubber either line with ridges they go on upside and inside out so when you pull them down the plain side is on the inside the ridges on the outside they are the cheapest of over reach boots
then you have another sort - which is petals boots that you can get in various colours and are attached aroundthe pastern by linking them onto a clear plastic strap which you can make either smaller by cutting of the end when you have enough petals going around the pastern
people tend to use these in x/c as they can match there x/c colours easily again the petals are made of rubber you can buy the straps serperately as you can the petals
then you have the newer over reach boot which is a single band of rubber with a velcro attachment sewn into them which you can easily apply and attach to the horse
people tend to go for the last two as they are quick to apply and change when doing ridden work for competing or going for hack etc as bell boots can be fiddly when putting on and if time is short in competing you want something that you can remove or put on quick
all can be washed in mild soapy water after usaged
have been having trouble with my warmblood losing the pull on boots and tearing them. Was wondering if folks thoughts the overreach boots would be a more suitable alternative or if I just need to keep on keeping on with the pull ons? Thanks!
"are you yawning? You don't ride well enough to yawn...I can yawn, because I ride better than you, Meredith Michael Beerbaum can yawn, you, not so much..." George Morris in Camden, SC