Boots in the field

timefort

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Do you turn out with boots - and if so, what type?

I have always been of the opinion that horses are better off turned out without boots as the benefits to booting are outweighed by boots rubbing, slipping, mud getting trapped underneath, legs getting too hot etc etc. But, J has been off games for the last 6 months due to a kick resulting in a broken splint bone. Feeling guilty (I am just about the only person at the yard who turns out unbooted) I asked the vet if booting would have prevented the injury and she suggested it may have done in that instance but obviously it would depend on where the offending horse aimed its kick.

Since apparently J has vetoed being wrapped in bubble wrap, I'm now considering turning out in boots, but what type? I'm of the age when boots were either "brushing", "over-reach" or "too expensive to contemplate and only for flash horses". Do I stick with bog-standard brushing boots, or would something like cross-country boots be more resilient and more likely to allow air flow? What are sports-boots? or exercise-boots?

Can anyone shed any light for me?
 

sjp1

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Horses will be horses IMO, and no I wouldn't boot. Boots IMO cause heat in tendons and once herds settle down they don't tend to boot each other. Settled herds are key though - mine has been out all winter with two other geldings in a corral - they are hugely playful - they rear at each other - never contacting - nip the inside of thighs - kick out at each other - never contacting, and have managed for months on this basis with no injuries. Having said that, my lad knew one other horse in the corral from a previous yard where they were bezzie mates and the other horse in the corral gets on really well with my boy.

I feel really sorry for you - it isn't your fault and sometimes accidents happen no matter how careful you are - boots wouldn't have made a difference with my lad going through a post and rail fence last year and causing a massive injury where a piece of wood went through the top half of his leg - he was a very lucky boy he didn't have to be put down, but really nothing to do with his field mates!
 

calmgirl

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Mine had surgery for a fractured splint bone from a kick and I haven't booted up to turn out. Bit different as the offending horse eventually was banned from group turn out for it's behaviour but I had to bide my time.
It is tempting to boot up but if things have settled in your group it may have just been a one off.
 

AdorableAlice

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I used premier equine air- teque sports boots and felt over reach boots in dry conditions and mud boots in winter. I am not going to get drawn into the rights and wrongs of using boots in the field. I used them because the horse was high value with expensive entries lodged months in advance of the competitions. The horse was also primed to self destruct at every opportunity so I did all I could to keep him in one piece at all times and could not be kept in a herd environment.
 

Annie B.

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Another vote for the premier equine boots, I have used them on a valuable horse who are is a repeat self harmer and they have helped a lot. Over reach boots always used on my big dressage types just to be sure as the way they are bred now short of body and long in the limb doesn't help. I have bought a flashy maxi cob who doesn't need any boots at all you could always go down that route. You will meet conflicting ideas but you will need to to do what is best for your horse and not over heat his legs. One of my instructors is a Grand prix dressage rider who will not use boots at all who goes with if the horse needs boots it isn't a dressage horse as if it can't move straight and keep out of trouble it's no use to him at all. The instructor gurns as I boot up. Oh well. Hope it all works out.x
 

monkeymad

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I used to boot up my mare with my oldest brushing boots. She would run around and self harm, and always an innocent looking nick would result in a big leg and antibiotics - obviously this always coincided with an event and I would have to withdraw.... I never had any problems with legs overheating. Now that she is older and not eventing I turn her out in 4 overreach boots and a sausage boot. She is just out with an old pony. If she was out with others I would boot her up..
 

AdorableAlice

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One of my instructors is a Grand prix dressage rider who will not use boots at all who goes with if the horse needs boots it isn't a dressage horse as if it can't move straight and keep out of trouble it's no use to him at all. The instructor gurns as I boot up. Oh well. Hope it all works out.x

The horse I mentioned in my post is the straightest moving and perfectly conformed show hunter you would like to find. However in the field he is a break dancing idiot with a habit of popping over the post and rail. Boots saved him many an accident.
 

sydney02

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I have never booted for turnout as I always thought the horses would end up with overheated legs and I wasn't convinced the boots would keep mud out and just generally like my horses to be horses and naked when turned out.

However I now have one with an allergy to grass who must be covered everywhere so he's in turnout boots/mud socks.
Then I have another who has recently been shod all round and the farrier told me to turn out in overreach boots which I have been doing, and she's only pulled a shoe when not wearing them.
 

Lulup

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I use cheap but furry lined boots for turnout - currently JHL (approx £20 pair) as they pose less risk of rubbing or overheating my think skinned TB. I also use overreach boots as they help keep shoes on as well as preventing nasty overreach injuries. I wouldn't bother if she wasn't shod as I feel it tends to be shoes that do the damage - although I turned her out in the manège today without hind boots and during a very acrobatic display she skinned her hind leg on the bloody fence grrr! She regularly scrapes her legs in the stable too so she is perhaps an extreme case but their legs are so vulnerable when they have steel shod hooves flying about in all directions, and as for group turnout - I would want full body armour for that!
 

ILuvCowparsely

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Do you turn out with boots - and if so, what type?

I have always been of the opinion that horses are better off turned out without boots as the benefits to booting are outweighed by boots rubbing, slipping, mud getting trapped underneath, legs getting too hot etc etc. But, J has been off games for the last 6 months due to a kick resulting in a broken splint bone. Feeling guilty (I am just about the only person at the yard who turns out unbooted) I asked the vet if booting would have prevented the injury and she suggested it may have done in that instance but obviously it would depend on where the offending horse aimed its kick.

Since apparently J has vetoed being wrapped in bubble wrap, I'm now considering turning out in boots, but what type? I'm of the age when boots were either "brushing", "over-reach" or "too expensive to contemplate and only for flash horses". Do I stick with bog-standard brushing boots, or would something like cross-country boots be more resilient and more likely to allow air flow? What are sports-boots? or exercise-boots?

Can anyone shed any light for me?

yes my boy wears stretch and flex boots http://www.equilibriumproducts.com/product/stretch-and-flex-flatwork-wraps/
 

AdorableAlice

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The night before the Royal International, the aforementioned horse, who was booted, bubble wrapped, velcro'ed, swathed in sheepskin and enclosed in a germ free sandwich box managed to allow a bee to sting his eyelid. I spent all night holding a bag of frozen peas on his brow because the vet could not risk a steroid jab so close to competing under rules. Un-amused.com that night !
 

Annie B.

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Adorable Alice. Sorry was trying to explain that although through similar circumstances our horses have been booted mine could hurt himself in a barn of cotton wool and that either the gob of the yard or some one you perceive as a God will have different idea to how you should keep your horse. I hope Op finds what is best for her horse through others help and her gut of how she knows her own horse.x
The horse I mentioned in my post is the straightest moving and perfectly conformed show hunter you would like to find. However in the field he is a break dancing idiot with a habit of popping over the post and rail. Boots saved him many an accident.
 

Luci07

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I am not a fan of booting up ...it's more faff, cleaning, hot legs in the summer and expense. However, I too, used to own a horse with a propensity for self destruction and HAD to boot him up. Also kept him on a yard whereby when he was turned out, he was kept in sight, and someone was around. Big Ears has turn out boots (we are on clay) and wears them when I will be back to remove in the evening and they are brilliant for keeping the mud off. I want him to be out 24 X 7 this summer (everything crossed) so he won't have boots on then.
 

First Flame

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I've always booted in the field, never had a problem with overheating legs and always thought better to be safe than sorry (valuable competition horse with a propensity for self harming and requires wrapping in bubble wrap). My mare has worn boots in the field since she was 4 and has only recently retired at 21 after a long career eventing and advanced dressage with no tendon issues in that time! If it is super hot (about 1 week of the year in the UK, lol) I do leave the boots off for that time or thoroughly cold hose legs when she comes in. My mare has quite sensitive skin and is happy in shires double locking brushing boots, have also used Premier equine both their air cooled competition boots and their brushing boots. Do what you think is right for your horse :).
 

timefort

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Thank you all for your comments and brand suggestions, apologies that internet issues didn't allow me to reply sooner. J is only valuable to me, and doesn't tend to hoon around (that's far too much like exercise!) but does occasionally end up on the wrong end of her fieldmate's back feet - probably because she's too lazy to get out of the way. Sigh, horses, who'd 'ave 'em?
 

ihatework

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As a general rule no I don't boot in the field.
Temporary exception being if they have been in in box rest for a bit, they might get boots on for the first hour or so out.
 

holeymoley

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Premier Equine turnout boot on the front and Sportabac turnout boots on the back. I usually only put fronts on though.
 
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