If you're a horse rider, you know the importance of keeping your horse's hooves healthy and well-protected. One way to do that is by using horse bell boots. But what are bell boots and what do they do? Bell boots for horses are a type of protective boot that goes over the hoofs of horses. They help protect the hooves from injury, especially when the horse is working or playing hard. There are a variety of different types and styles of bell boots, so it's important to choose the right pair for your horse. Keep reading to learn more about overreach boots and how to pick the right pair for your horse!
What are bell boots?
Bell boots, also known as overreach boots are protective bell-shaped boots that go over the hooves and the horse's back and front heels.
What are bell boots used for?
Bell boots provide protection to a horse. They are used to prevent excessive tack when a horse's heel is hit. They protect toe bulbs and the coronary band and hoof walls up into the horse's heels. They help prevent overreaching in which horses hit the heel bulb in the front foot or one of the rear legs steps on the side of the other rear leg during a ride.
What materials are bell boots for horses made of?
Bell boots for horses are usually made of gum rubber, PVC, nylon, neoprene, open-cell foam, carbon fiber, or a combination of these materials. Each type of material has its advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to choose the right one for your horse.
Rubber is a popular choice for horses bell boots because it's durable, easy to clean, light, and stretchable. Rubber bell boots have a great grip and you can use them for horse riding. PVC is also a popular choice because it's lightweight and flexible. Rubber and PVC are especially suitable for aggressive horses and rides.
Nylon is a great choice because it's strong and durable. Neoprene lining is a good choice for horses who are sensitive to rubber or PVC. Open-cell foam work well for horses who need extra cushioning. Carbon fiber is a good choice for horses who need extra support.
Picking the right material for your horse's bell boots is important because it will affect how well the boots protect the hooves and how comfortable they are to wear.
If you're not sure which material is best for your horse, talk to your veterinarian or a qualified equine professional.
What types of bell boot styles are there?
There are a variety of different styles of overreach boots, so it's important to choose the right pair for your horse. Some of the most popular styles include:
Pull-on bell boots: Pull-on bell boots are easy to put on and take off. They offer maximum protection because they don't open at the heel or lateral part. However, they can be uncomfortable for some horses because they are tight around the fetlock.
Open bell boots: Open bell boots have a hook-and-loop closure that makes them easy to put on and take off. They're a popular choice because they're comfortable and offer good protection.
Closed bell boots: Closed bell boots have a snap or Velcro closure that keeps them securely in place. They're a good choice for horses that are prone to stepping on their own feet or for those who need extra protection.
Neoprene bell boots: Neoprene bell boots are made of a soft, flexible material that conforms to the horse's hind feet. They're a good choice for horses with sensitive skin or those who are allergic to rubber.
No-turn bell boots: No-turn bell boots are designed to stay in place and not turn during use. They're a good choice for horses who are active and need maximum protection.
Rubber traction boots: Rubber bell boots have a textured bottom that helps prevent slipping. They're a good choice for horses who work on slippery surfaces.
Over-reach boots: Over-reach boots help protect the horse's hooves from overreaching. They're a good choice for horses who are active and need extra protection.
Lined bell boot: Lined bell boots have a soft lining that helps protect the horse's hooves from chafing. They're a good choice for horses who are sensitive to rubbery materials.
How to select the right bell boot for your horse?
Now that you know more about horses bell boots, it's time to choose the right pair for your horse. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
The type of horse: What type of horse do you have?
Some horses are more active than others and may need a different type of bell boot. For example, active horses may need a no-turn bell boot to stay in place during use. Horses who work on slippery surfaces may benefit from rubber bell boots. If your horse has a medical condition such as navicular disease, you may need to use therapeutic boots.
The type of horse you have will also affect the size of bell boot you need to purchase. Horse sizes can range from miniature (under 34 inches at the withers) to draft (over 72 inches at the withers). You'll need to measure your horse's hooves and consult a size chart to find the right size bell boot for your horse.
The size of the boot: What is the size, shape, and width of your horse's legs?
It's important to choose a bell boot that's the right size for your horse. Bell boots that are too small can be uncomfortable and may not offer adequate protection. Horse bell boots that are too large can be difficult to keep on and may not stay in place during use.
To choose the right size bell boot, start by placing a small piece of sand or a similar object under the heel bulbs of your horse's hooves. The boot should reach the ground beneath the heel bulbs when standing. If there's a small gap between the boot and the ground, that's okay.
Once you've determined the correct size bell boot, be sure to check the fit before using it. The boot should be snug but not too tight. It should stay in place during use but be easy to remove when necessary. With the right size and fit, your horse will be able to enjoy bell boots without any problems.
The material of the boot: What are the specific needs of your horse?
Choose a boot that's made from a material that's appropriate for your horse's needs. Neoprene bell boots are a good choice for horses with sensitive skin, while rubber traction boots are ideal for horses who work on slippery surfaces. If your horse has a medical condition such as navicular disease, you may need to use therapeutic boots.
When choosing a material, be sure to consider the climate in which you'll be using the boots. If you live in a hot climate, choose a breathable material that won't cause your horse to overheat. If you live in a cold climate, choose a material that will keep your horse's feet warm and dry.
The color of the boot: What is your style?
Equestrianism is also a lifestyle. As such, there are many different styles of dress and equipment. Many riders prefer to match their horse's bell boots to their clothing and equipment. Others prefer to use contrasting colors to make their horse more visible in the arena.
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing fun colors of your horse's bell boots. It's simply a matter of personal preference.
How to fit your bell boots on your horse?
Now that you've selected the perfect pair of bell boots for your horse, it's time to learn how to put them on.
The first step is to clean your horse's hooves. This will help the boots stay in place and prevent dirt and debris from getting trapped inside.
Next, place the bell boot over your horse's hoof so that the heel is positioned behind the bulb. The boot should be snug but not too tight. You should be able to fit one finger between the horse's hoof and the boot. If the boot is too loose, it will not stay in place and could come off during exercise. If the boot is too tight, it will be uncomfortable for your horse and could rub.
Once the boot is in place, pull the straps around the front of the hoof and fasten them securely. Be sure to leave enough slack so that your horse can comfortably flex his foot.
Finally, check the fit of the boot and make any necessary adjustments. It should stay in place during use but be easy to remove when necessary.
With the right size and fit, your horse will be able to enjoy bell boots without any problems.
Can a horse wear bell boots all the time?
The answer to this question depends on the needs of your horse. Some horses may need to wear bell boots all the time, while others may only need them during exercise or work. Although leaving your bell boots on for a long time may cause thrush infection and chafe.
Can you ride a horse with bell boots on?
Yes, you can ride a horse with bell boots on. However, it is important to choose the right size and fit to ensure that the boots stay in place and are comfortable for your horse.
What horse types need bell boots?
Horses that are prone to USD (Underneath Support Deficiency), navicular disease, or other hoof problems may need to wear bell boots all the time to protect their hooves.
Horses that are worked on hard surfaces or in slippery conditions may need bell boots to prevent slips and falls.
Horses that are being ridden in unfamiliar or dangerous terrain may need bell boots to protect their hooves from rocks and other debris.
Finally, horses that are competing in dressage, showjumping, or other disciplines may need bell boots to protect their hooves from impact.
Do bell boots cause discomfort?
No, bell boots for horses do not cause discomfort when they fit properly.
What are some other types of horse boots?
Other types of horse boots include:
Brushing boots: Brushing boots are used to protect your horse's legs from brush and debris. They are typically made of leather or synthetic materials and have velcro closures.
tendon boots: Tendon boots are used to protect your horse's tendons and ligaments from injury. They are typically made of neoprene or other shock-absorbing materials and have velcro closures.
Fetlock boots: Fetlock boots are used to protect your horse's fetlocks from injury. They are typically made of neoprene or other shock-absorbing materials and have velcro closures.
Travel boots: Travel boots are used to protect your horse's legs during transport. They are typically made of leather or synthetic materials and have velcro closures.
Stable boots: Stable boots are used to protect your horse's legs while he is in his stall. They are typically made of leather or synthetic materials and have velcro closures.
Cross country boots: Cross country boots provide protection for your horse's front feet during cross country riding. They are typically made of neoprene or other shock-absorbing materials and have velcro closures.