SOS July 2016: Modified Hoof Boots for Acute Laminitis

Perhaps some of you were fortunate to see Dr. Bryan Fraley's presentation on Hoof Boots and Laminitis at AAEP in Las Vegas last December. For those of you who weren't (or for those of you who do not have a photographic memory), a copy of the associated white paper is available HERE.

Dr. Fraley heads up the Fraley Equine Podiatry Center located at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in the heart of Lexington Thoroughbred country. EasyCare is thrilled that our products have played such a pivotal role in his research.

Dr. Fraley explores the how and why of "interchangeable soles" (EasyCare's patented Click System) on hoof boots and presents compelling evidence of their use in the successful treatment of acute laminitis. On the hit parade are: boot selection and fit, usage of various packing materials, a candid look at the pros and cons of choosing modified boots over a more permanent shoe package.

The Therapy Click System is currently available in a 5 and 10 degree wedge and four sizes to fit nearly our entire range of boot styles. The degree of wedge can easily be adjusted with a grinder or the addition of adhesive material.

EasyCare is constantly working to develop novel solutions for treating lameness. You can see other therapy offerings like the Cloud, the Click, and the Flip Flop on our podiatry page HERE. Contact us to see how we can help you with even the toughest cases!

Debbie Schwiebert dschwiebert@easycareinc.com 800-447-8836 EXT 2224

Rebecca Balboni rbalboni@easycareinc.com 800-447-8836 EXT 2232

 

Secrets of the Savvy

Secrets of the Savvy: your source for inside information on all things EasyCare.

Tahlia Franke’s Countdown to Tevis

With the 2016 Tevis Cup now less than 30 days away, Tahlia Franke isn’t sitting around twiddling her thumbs, she is burning up the trails and the racetrack. On June 25, the 17-year-old from Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, competed in her first track races—and won.

Franke, a senior in high school, has been riding and training both flat track racehorses and endurance horses for Jay Randle’s Splendacrest Arabians for several years. Arabian races are usually held in conjunction with Thoroughbred races, and Franke has “strapped” at a number of them.  (A strapper someone who holds a position looking after racehorses. The duties range from cleaning out the stables and yards, feeding, grooming and blanketing horses, plus saddling horses for track-work and races, hence the name.)

The first stand-alone Arabian race day in Australia was held this past weekend, with five races scheduled at the Clifton Racetrack, Franke explained. She finished fourth in her first race, which was also her mount’s first race.

“Then the champion mare Aloha Farina took me home for my first win in the 1,000-meter endurance horse sprint,” said Franke. Farina is Franke’s favorite horse as Splendacrest. “I have ridden her in FEI rides and she is qualified for the Young Rider’s World Championships.”

 

Franke’s mount for her third race was scratched. “At the end of the day we did a match race. We put two of our best sprinters against each other and I was lucky enough to win that one on Vok,” she said.

 As soon as the races concluded, Franke took off to compete in an 80-km endurance ride the next day.

“The endurance ride went well,” she said. “It was a very tough ride, but we finished 2nd lightweight, which I was very happy with, considering we weren't actually trying to race.”

Frank will compete in another 80-km race two weeks before Tevis and then a 160-km race two days before she boards her plane for California on July 18.

Franke was Australia’s top-ranked junior endurance rider in 2015, and was a finalist for the Equestrian Australia Sport Achievement Awards. She is one of 10 junior riders whose Tevis entry is sponsored by EasyCare.  

Franke will ride M Dash Stellar, a.k.a. “Stella.” The 12-year-old Arabian mare has an impressive ride record, with 35 completions in 36 starts and three Tevis completions with three different riders. She is owned by Jennifer Waitte of Napa, Ca.

Flip Flop Forgiveness

Submitted by Mari Ural, Team Easyboot 2016 Member

Even if your horse doesn't have the perfect foot, give the Easyboot Flip Flops a chance.  Especially for those people who want to go barefoot, but feel they can't, Flip Flops are the perfect solution.

Heart's feet do not have the perfect shape for Glue-Ons or Gloves.  He does use them with help from a power strap, tape and extra glue because the shells tend to get a gap at the "v".  His foot just seems to be narrower towards the coronet band than at the base, although the trim looks great.

We decided to give the Flip Flops a whirl.  Knowing there would be some gapping we simply stuffed more glue into the gap.  It has worked out great.  He's been out in sand, rocks, gravel and even some nice footing!  He's quite happy in his Flip Flops.  He strides out and the Flip Flops are totally secure.  The best part is that nothing collects in them.  After the ride, there is no debris stuck inside the Flip Flops, they are clean as a whistle.  When we were in mud, some did squish into the boot.  However, when it dried it came right out again.

For those folks who wish to leave them on for a full trim cycle they are perfect.  All the fresh air any hoof could want. Thank you, EasyCare.

 

 

Business of Booting Webinar presented by the PHCP Thursday, June 23, 2016

You're invited!

What: The Business of Booting webinar taught by Leslie Carrig, PHCP Mentor and former owner of High Desert Hoof Care

When: June 23rd, 2016 at 5:30 pacific time.

Who: Professional Hoof Care Practitioners and students training to work in this field

As a Hoof Care Practitioner it is part of your job to select and fit the hoof boots that will work best for your clients and their horses. This is critical to the success of your business in more than one way.

Some Topics Covered:
- gaining confidence
- working with owners
- successful use of hoof boots
- changing your attitude towards hoof boots
- profits
- inventory, what should I stock?
tricks of the trade
- a detailed handout will be provided

If you are working in hoof care as a career (or plan to), but are struggling with being a salesmen, consider taking this webinar to boost your business and add to your bottom line.

Find out more and sign up at http://pacifichoofcare.org/Businessofbooting.html

Rebecca Balboni

easycare-customer-service-representative-rebecca-balboni

Customer Service Representative

A lifetime of riding and showing sport horses has given me a deep appreciation for the importance of soundness and comfort on performance. Let me help elevate your equine experience by finding the right boot for your horse and unique situation.

EasyCare Goes Cavalry at the Old Dominion

Submitted by Karen Neuenschwander, Team Easyboot 2016 Member

The Old Dominion 100 is a bucket list ride for many. Rocks, big climbs, heat, humidity, and more rocks make “the Beast of the East” a fitting nickname for this ride. To add to the challenge, there is an option to ride “Cavalry.” The rider must carry with them everything for the horse and rider (except for water) for the entire ride. I’ve been fascinated with the idea of attempting this challenge since I learned about it several years ago. When it came time to take my mare, Brooke, on her first 100 miler, I knew she’d be a good candidate to give it a try. She’s strong on mountain trails, tolerates heat and humidity well, and takes great care of herself without being too high maintenance.

Hoof protection was a big consideration since any gear for lost shoes or boots had to be carried. Easyboot Glue-Ons were the obvious choice for us. The key to Glue-On success is proper application to DRY hooves. In our damp, swampy Southeast Virginia climate, getting those hooves dry can take a little extra effort. Brooke and her buddy, Legalas, had a sleepover in my barn’s stalls the night before we applied the boots for some extra drying time. “Legs” will be doing Tevis next month in Glue-Ons applied by the EasyCare gluing team, so he did the 50 miler at Old Dominion to try them out. The next morning, I glued everyone’s boots (with lots of extra hands to help things go smoothly), and we headed to the ride.

A night in the stalls keeps everyone's hooves nice and dry before gluing.

Although I tried to minimize the amount of stuff that I carried, some necessities needed to be packed along. I used the EasyCare Deluxe Stowaway Pack to carry some grain, two spare Easyboot Gloves, and electrolytes. I had planned to use the Deluxe Pommel Pack for more storage in front, but upon trying it out, discovered that I actually preferred something a little smaller. One quick call to EasyCare, and the standard size pack arrived a couple of days later. It carried my drink bottles and Brooke’s all-important carrots! I carried my food in a small backpack designed for ultra-runners, and we were all set to tackle the ride!

Sporting our Glue-Ons and all of our gear.  Photo by Becky Pearman Photography
 
Our goal was simply to get a completion. We made time where the footing was good, trusting that the Glue-Ons would absorb concussion on the miles of forest service roads. Brooke was able to do her awesome power walk over the crazy rocks and up and down the steepest climbs, her boots providing great traction and protection on the uneven footing. In the end, we completed the ride in fifth place, making us eligible to compete not only for the Cavalry Trophy, but also the Old Dominion Trophy, which is judged similarly to Best Conditioned.
 

During the judging the next morning, Brooke trotted out sound and looked great for the vet exam. I was shocked and honored at the awards ceremony to learn we had won both the Cavalry and Old Dominion Trophies! I am so grateful to EasyCare for offering products that helped make our ride such a success!

 

Meet Tahlia Franke: Australia’s Top-Ranked Junior Rider Sets Her Sights on the 2016 Tevis Cup

Tahlia Franke is counting the days until the 2016 Western States Trail Ride, more popularly known as the Tevis Cup. The 17-year-old from Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, is one of ten junior riders whose entry into the prestigious endurance race is being sponsored by EasyCare. The race will be held July 23rd.

Franke has long dreamed of someday riding the Tevis. “Competing in the Tevis has always been a dream of mine since I first heard of it and something I never dreamt of being able to do as a junior rider,” says Franke, who will turn 18 a week after the ride. “The difficulty of the ride has attracted me to it even more. I have always loved the more difficult rides, though I'm certain nothing I have done will come close to the Tevis and that is something I am very excited about.”

Franke was Australia’s top-ranked junior rider in 2014 and 2015. Her record includes 38 50- to 75-mile competitions, with eight wins plus 11 top-10 finishes. She has completed three 100-mile races, including first-place junior and best condition at the New South Wales (NSW) State Championships in 2014. She has ridden on the Queensland junior team competing in the Southern Cross Challenge three times.

Despite her record and experience, the Tevis will be an entirely new and different experience for her.

“I have never done a ride that doesn't finish where it starts, so this aspect in particular will be one of many completely new experiences that have me nervous but of course excited to see how everything works,” she says.     

    

Franke will ride M Dash Stellar, aka “Stella.” The 12-year-old Arabian mare (Sam Tiki+ x ES Dakota) has an impressive ride record, with 35 completions in 36 starts and three Tevis completions with three different riders. Her most notable finish was 3rd place in 2013 with Jenni Smith of Moraga, Ca.

Stella is owned by Jennifer Waitte of Napa, Ca., who is serving as Franke’s sponsor. Rules governing the ride require riders under age 18 to be accompanied by an adult. Waitte invited Franke to travel to the U.S. and compete in the ride after hearing about Franke’s accomplishments through a mutual friend.

“My original intention was to lease one of my two mares for Tevis,” explains Waitte. “They have been training and competing together for many years, and, as a result, ‘the whole is greater than the sum of the parts’. The two mares would each perform better at Tevis if they competed together.

“I broached the idea with Cris Jones, who is Australian and well-connected with the Australian endurance community. She put the word out and Tahlia’s name came up. This interested me because she is just 17 yet very accomplished in Australia. Under the circumstances, I didn’t think it was appropriate to lease a horse to her. Instead, I invited her to come to California and I would sponsor her by providing a horse, accommodations and crew … everything she would need to compete.”

Waitte says that sponsoring Franke has completely changed her focus on the rider. “This is a great opportunity for Tahlia, but also for me,” Waitte says.  “I’ve never sponsored a junior rider before and I am determined to get her to the finish line.”

Franke will arrive in the U.S. on Monday, July 18. She will attend the international riders’ dinner in Auburn on July 19th. On July 20th, the EasyCare Elite Team will apply Stella’s Glue-On boots for the race.

“Stella has been competing in Easyboot Gloves and Glue-Ons for five years now,” says Waitte. “I typically apply Glue-Ons for races myself, however, I want Tahlia to meet the EasyCare team in Auburn before the race, and so I’m having them apply the boots.”

Waitte has been keeping Tahlia apprised of Stella’s training and racing progress. “Even though she’s half way around the world, she is still part of the team,” says Waitte. I’ve been sending her regular updates, pictures and videos.”

 

And Here I Am at EasyCare

Submitted by Kathy Sherer, EasyCare Customer Service Representative

My mother told me that the first word out of my young mouth was “horthy.” Later, when I could speak more clearly, I began asking Santa for horse figurines instead of dolls, and cowboy outfits instead of dresses. I still remember proudly wearing chaps and a holster to my first day of kindergarten. 

It was in 6th grade that we had a “bring your pet to school” day. I saw nothing wrong with bringing my pony, and my grandfather helped me pull it off. Luckily, the event was held in the gymnasium where there was plenty of room and a floor that could be easily mopped.  I was born with “horse fever” and I never recovered.

Eventually, the boys at the boarding stable became as interesting as the horses. I’m sure my family was relieved that I was finally becoming more “girly.” I always needed to board my horse, so my mother had to drive me back and forth to the stable. This got old by the time I was 14, so that’s when I started to drive. I was supposed to go straight to the stable and back, and that’s what I usually did.

All of this growing up with horses took place in Michigan, and that’s where my horse fever got worse. I caught the “jumping bug.” It was an amazing little leopard Appaloosa named Son of Chief Handprint that took me over the jumps. He was so good at it that he jumped out of any pasture I put him in. I eventually gave him up to be shown at higher levels than I wanted to go.

When I moved to Durango in 1986, my jumping days were over and I got a Quarter Horse mare and switched to a western saddle. I bred her to a nice local stallion and gave the colt to my new husband. Many good years were spent on those horses before they went to horse heaven, and that’s when we switched to Foxtrotters. We both contracted a new case of horse fever.

We used to love to camp and ride in Monument Valley. Our guide got us to do some crazy things!

My paint Foxtrotter, Charlie, was constantly getting laminitis and finally had to be put down. I wish the Cloud boot had been available then.

I believe it was 2004 when I realized that steel shoes weren’t the best thing for horses. I discovered EasyCare boots and there was no turning back. I started with the Original Easyboot and then moved on to all the new, improved styles as they came out. At the same time, I was on a quest to find a barefoot trimmer. Until I could find one, my husband and I studied Pete Ramey videos so we could do it ourselves. It’s way harder than it looks!

Trigger, another Foxtrotter, was my next horse. My husband and I always ride in the Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering parade with the 4 Corners Back Country Horsemen. Trigger has never been shod and has great feet. Next to him is Ebony who REALLY needs boots to be comfortable.

Parading with the Bayfield Belles.

Fast forward to 2016 where I now I find myself working for EasyCare as a Customer Service Representative. It’s so rewarding to talk to people all over the country and help them along their barefoot journey. Everyone desperately wants to make their horse healthier and more comfortable. There’s a lot of love out there for horses – and a lot of cases of horse fever.

 

Finally Free!

This is our 15 year old mare who came to us five years ago in a panic, in pain and had been alone for five years. She is now pain free, in a herd of four, barefoot and wearing Easyboot Trail boots out on the trails and roads. It is an absolute blessing as her hooves were messed up. We had X-Rays done before and will have them done in another year or so. She is SO happy to have them put on her hooves. Yeah! Thanks, EasyCare!

Name: Kim
State: AZ
Country: USA
Equine Discipline: Trail
Favorite Boot: Easyboot Trail

Narrow Hooves? Try Inserts for Trail and New Mac Boots!

Have you struggled to find a boot to fit narrower hooves? EasyCare has a great solution for long narrow feet-the Old Mac's Inserts. These are shims that Velcro into either side of your New Mac or Trail boot to take up to one half inch of space within the boot. They are sold in a set of four and are quick and easy to apply.

This is an excellent choice for a horse just coming out of shoes as the hooves often get wider over the first several months of transition. In many cases, you can purchase one set of boots to carry you through a fairly significant change in hoof shape.

Optimizing the fit of your hoof boots will prevent twisting on the hoof and rubbing, as well as improve boot retention. If you ever have questions about fit, give our friendly customer service team a call. We are here to help and are always happy to share tips and tricks to make your booting experience the best!

Rebecca Balboni

easycare-customer-service-representative-rebecca-balboni

Customer Service Representative

A lifetime of riding and showing sport horses has given me a deep appreciation for the importance of soundness and comfort on performance. Let me help elevate your equine experience by finding the right boot for your horse and uniquesituation.

Thunder's 5000th Mile in Repurposed Gloves

Submitted by Karen Bumgarner, Team Easyboot 2016 Member
 
My plan was simple: Order some comfort pads to put in Thunder's Gloves and go ride three days at Oregon Outback's beautiful Hallelujah Trail, put on by Dennis and Linda Tribby. Only I messed up and ordered 12mm pads and not the 6mm, which I have since returned and now have 6mm pads for the next time. But I needed something for this time. Never fear, I have a tube of Sikaflex to goop some boots on with. Hmmmm, I scrounge through my collection of used Gloves and come up with two that have some mileage on them that are still plenty good. Plan B, Sikaflex the Gloves on and take the gaiters off and voila - good as Glue-Ons.
 
 
One thing I love about Sikaflex is that it doesn't set up real quick. I can take my time and not hurry, I like that. So my first step is to loosen the screws on the gaiter because I will take it off eventually. Then I take the Glove and fill it with a generous amount of Sikaflex, smearing some up on the sides inside the boot too. I set the boot aside and do the last minute touches of being sure the hoof is clean and ready. With Sikaflex I don't have to buff the hoofwall and such like you do with Adhere, I like that too. Then I just put the Glove on as I always would, tapping it into place with the mallet and hooking up the gator. I have him ties eating hay which keeps him quiet for awhile as the Sikaflex sets up. After an hour or so I put him back out with his buds. The next day I remove the gator and head for the ride.
 
 
Thunder chowing down at the vet check on day one. Our Sikaflexed Gloves are performing well.
 

Thunder after the first 50, looking happy and ready for another day. (Photo by Trish Frahm)

Mid-day trotting down the great trails and enjoying life! The footing was awesome and we wouldn't have needed those comfort pads on this ride anyway. But it was sure nice to not have to worry about any rubs or irritation from three days of gaiters and Gloves. Thunder completed his AERC 5,000 miles with day two. And we finished up the weekend riding the third day and being a Pioneer.
 
 
Now here we are six days after "sikking" them on and I have the chore of removing the boots. They are still nice and tight.
 
 
The best way I know to get them off is find a spot to insert a flat sided screw driver and just start working it around the hoof and pull the boot and such away from the hoof wall.
 
 
It takes a few minutes of working the screw driver around the hoof but soon the boot is coming free of the hoof.
 
 
After loosening the sides all around, I insert the screw driver blade under the boot, working through the heel area, and it pops right off pretty easily.
 
 
​Another great thing with using Sikaflex is all the material is in or on the boot and your hoof is clean and has no debris stuck on it. We'll be ready to trim and Glove for the next ride, and go for more miles.
 

Editor’s note: the opinions expressed in this blog do not represent EasyCare’s official recommended gluing protocol for hoof boots. To learn more about the recommended gluing protocol, please see http://www.easycareinc.com/Our_Boots/Easyboot_glue-on/glue-on_fitting.aspx. Following the steps outlined by EasyCare will increase the success rate of any glue-on product.