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Best boots for persistent hoof issues?

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  • Best boots for persistent hoof issues?

    Hi there,

    I remember a thread a while back where some COTHers were recommending a specific type of boot for dealing with lameness?

    To make a long story short, my mare threw her LF shoe 2 months ago, abcessed after she was re-shod, spent some time in a cavallo boot but now in the process has gone lame in RF (which had a myron mclane pad). The vet & farrier have been out together and thinks she bruised her frog and heel overloading the RF while the LF was healing.

    Vet wants her in a boot with a gel pad or wedge. Any recommendations for a therapeutic boot?


  • #2
    My farrier and I have been working to get all the drainage from an abcess for about a week. Front foot, shoe off now of course. I have had the best luck with an Old Mac boot, as far as staying on and him being comfortable in it. Not sure if pad will affect fit though, I am using MagnaPaste. He has been going out with it in a pen that is about 80 x 80 feet.
    Rest in peace Claudius, we will miss you.


    • #3
      Originally posted by MarshMade View Post

      ... threw her LF shoe 2 months ago, abcessed after she was re-shod,...but now in the process has gone lame in RF (which had a myron mclane pad). The vet & farrier have been out together and thinks she bruised her frog and heel overloading the RF while the LF was healing.
      Did the vet and/or farrier mention the possibility of laminitis in the RF since that hoof was probably overloaded while she was lame with an abscess on the LF?

      I think its called supporting limb laminitis, and I had a mare do the same exact as you're describing...abscess in RF, and foundered in the LF from the excessive weight bearing while the abscessed foot was sore.

      I wouldn't just assume its a bruised frog.
      "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


      • #4
        Soft Ride Boots are awesome. I highly recommend them for therapeutic use. We used them frequently in the veterinary hospital for all sorts of hoof/lameness issues. They are truly a therapeutic boot-- not for riding and not really for turnout, although they do hold up for light turnout.

        Easy Boot makes a cheaper knock-off, the Easyboot Rx. I purchased one last year for my horse who was recovering from the damage by a vet who went digging to China in her foot trying to open an abscess (I was out of town). Nice boot, but did not work for my purposes at all-- my mare obliterated 3 of them. I will say Easy Boot customer service was fabulous about replacing it, even after my mare destroyed it twice in a row. They are great to work with.
        Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO


        • #5
          I prefer Old Macs for rehab work. They stay on very well in reasonable turnout and do allow you to use thick padding inside. Easy on and off also. You can later use them for riding also.


          • #6
            It really depends more on the shape of your horse's hooves (angles, heel height, length of wall, length and width of hoofprint, etc) than anything else. You need a boot that fits her hooves.

            That said I've had the best success with Cavallo Simple boots (I used the Easy Care Comfort pads in them at times) and Boa Boots (also used pads at times). I prefer the Simple boots because I found that once dirt gets into the cable channel in the Boas the cables wear through too quickly. I like the tread on the Simple boots better too. If the ground is at all muddy the Boa treads just filled up too fast and solidly.

            The EasyBoots and variations seem to be the most finicky when it comes to fitting. In my experience they don't work well if your horse doesn't have the right proportions and angles. I found that the horse I tried EasyBoots on came too close to his front heels with his hind toes - he didn't overreach but was constantly catching the EasyBoot and pulling it off, even if we just walked. EasyBoots also put a lot of pressure on the hoof in order to stay on and if used for any length of time for turnout can create more problems (been there, done that ). With the new gaiters on the EasyBoots this may be less of an issue than it was at the time I tried them as the gaiters help keep the boots in place.


            • #7
              Which boot will fit depends on the shape of the hoof. That said, I HIGHLY recommend the Easy Boot Trail. My gelding developed low-grade laminitis last fall and needed boots. I called Easy Boots, planning to order the Rx, and they suggested the Trail Boot. They told me it doubles as a therapy boot and is more suited for turnout than the Rx.

              My gelding lives out 24/7 in a roughly 1/4 acre dry lot with my mare. Up until a week ago, when I finally took them off, he lived in his boots 24/7. They never came off, even in the mud, and had very few issues with rocks getting inside. Most of the small pebbles I did find got trapped in his fetlock hair, rather than getting down inside the boot. The couple that made it all the way in smashed down into the pad, rather than his sole.

              My vet wanted them on until it stopped raining. We are now dry, so I took them off and he is doing great with just a couple applications of durasole to harden up his soles after wearing the boots for so long.

              When it rained, his feet were drier inside the boot than they would have been standing in the mud.

              To prevent rubs, I used knee-high nylons on him for the first week or so (pulled up over the hoof and then folded back down over the top of the boot). I also used Caldesene baby powder in the boots daily to help prevent rubs and absorb moisture.

              The boots just velcro on and off, you can buy a variety of pads for them (although the firm pad lasts much longer), and they are much cheaper than the Soft Ride boots They take seconds to take off and out back on.

              I also bought a second pair, so I always had clean dry boots to put on when they got too mucky.