EasyCare Retail Dealer and Hoof Care Practitioner Work Together

The following is from EasyCare retail dealer Jo Turner of the Roy Frey Western Store in Topeka, Kansas:

"As western store owners, trail riders and wanna-be cowgirl/cowboy, my husband and I are EasyCare dealers and have sold Stowaway Packs for years from EasyCare. We use them ourselves and love their "small footprint" and secure fit on the back of our saddles. In my pack, I carry my hobbles, knife, extra leather for emergency repairs, Kleenex, lunch and water plus tie on a rain jacket or halter as needed.

This past year, we have been studying the virtues of letting our horses go barefoot. A good customer and friend of ours is a barefoot trimmer and also an EasyCare dealer. Terrie Yordy, of It Behooves The Horse, always carries a trunk load of EasyCare hoof boots with her everywhere she goes. We pulled the shoes on our horses last November and have been doing barefoot trimming since. Our hoof care practitioner measured our horse's feet and we purchased the Easyboot Glove Back Country boots. One horse has two different size front feet. The Back Country boots are easy to put on and they stay on.

We have gone trail riding in Texas, New Mexico, Kansas and Missouri with great results - never losing a boot. We have also been on two cattle drives that were five and twelve miles respectively.

I have participated in a working cow horse clinic using the boots. Again, with the same result - I have never lost a boot.

Back Country boots in action . . .

We couldn't be happier with the results of going barefoot and using the Back Country Boots. Thank you, EasyCare, for designing a great hoof boot that serves many different equine disciplines!"

Thank you from EasyCare to Jo Turner, Dewayne Burgess and Terrie Yordy. It is a pleasure to work with such enthusiastic dealers!

Dee Reiter

easycare-customer-service-dee-reiter

Retail Account Rep

I am the Retail and New Dealer Account Rep for EasyCare. I will be happy to help you with ordering, selecting the most popular styles and sizes of EasyCare hoof boots to stock. Let me help you with suggestions on merchandising and provide training for you and your staff, at your convenience.

 

Nevada Discovery Ride

On May 25, 2013 Samantha Szesciorka set out on a 452 mile solo horseback ride across the state of Nevada. Samantha’s travel companions were her formerly-wild mustang Sage and her dog Bella. Her goal? To encourage wild horse adoption by demonstrating the trainability and rideability of mustangs on a challenging endurance ride. EasyCare was proud to sponsor Samantha on this journey. Samantha’s horse, Sage, is barefoot and wore Easyboot Epics during the entire month-long adventure. 

Below, Samantha discusses her journey and her experience with hoof boots:

The Nevada Discovery Ride was designed to be as backcountry as possible. We started on the Utah border and traveled straight across the middle of Nevada – up and over fourteen mountain ranges and across every valley in between. Our days began at 4:00 am with feeding and I was saddled and on the trail by 6:00 am to beat the desert heat. Though we only rode an average of 20 miles a day, the terrain could vary wildly – from sand to boulder-size rocks to pavement to loose gravel. Since Sage is barefoot, hoof boots were critical to keep him comfortable and sound.

We used the Easyboot Epics every day. At the beginning of the ride it would take me 20 minutes just to get all four boots on, but by the end of the ride, I had those boots on like a pro! They are designed to have a snug fit so it takes a little work to get them on. I found that tilting the hoof down and twisting the boot back and forth got them on tight and centered. Don’t forget the cotter pins! I discovered early on that the challenging terrain could flip up a buckle. It only took a few rides of hearing the distinct clacking sound and having to dismount to fix the buckle before I buckled down and started using the cotter pins. Once I did, no more flipped buckles.

Fans and followers of my ride were most concerned with how Sage’s feet would hold up after 452 miles. When we rode into Reno at the end of the month, they were surprised to see no chips, bruising or wear. In fact, Sage actually needed a trim! As for the Easyboots, they held up pretty well too. I was curious to see how much mileage we would get out of a boot. Over the course of the ride there was one broken cable, one broken buckle and one torn gaiter. These parts can be easily replaced but while on the ride I opted to use new boots, saving the repairs for when we were back home. One Epic actually made the entire 450 miles but on the last day of the ride I was surprised to see that we actually wore a hole clear through the toe.

Terrain wasn’t the only challenge on the trail. We also had to deal with extreme weather, from thunderstorms to dust storms. There were also wild animals to contend with including elk, wild horses, free-range cattle, and even a few rattlesnakes. It was an amazing adventure – certainly challenging at times but always rewarding. For me, the health of the animals was paramount. I was vigilant about looking for saddle sores, joint inflammation, or weight loss. With all the other things to worry about on the trail, the Epics gave me excellent peace of mind. We even impressed an old rancher who we met on the trail. He was skeptical about us riding all the way across Nevada barefoot and insisted on looking at Sage’s hooves. He was shocked to see how healthy they were. When we rode off he remarked, “You just keep using those boots and you’ll be fine!”

To find out more about the Nevada Discovery Ride and see what Samantha and Sage are up to now, visit www.NevadaDiscoveryRide.com or like our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/NevadaDiscoveryRide.

Samantha Szesciorka

Trail Boot Dreaming

Every year for the past four years I have gone riding on sections of the Colorado Trail with my friend Debbie who is from Boston. Each year when we finish, I start dreaming and planning for the following year. While the elevation at my home is close to 7,000 ft, on the trail we reach elevations well over 12,000 feet. The altitude can drain your stamina, especially when you are a low lander from Boston! Because of this, the booting duties are left to me. Debbie is a former forest ranger and has a wealth of knowledge that comes in handy in the high country but there is only so much oxygen to go around.

I carefully trim and fit both horses before we head to the Rocky Mountains and picking the right boots is foremost in my mind. I have tried most of the EasyCare line - from the original Easyboot to the new Easyboot Glove Back Country and I love all of them for different reasons. I was so pleased with how the Back Country handles rough terrain. The one boot I have not tried yet is the Easyboot Glue-On but the idea of one less task on a frigid morning sounds nice. It seems like it would be so much easier for me to just leave those boots on for the week we take to ride the trail. This year I need to take the time to try my hand at gluing. A good practice run will be in order and I'll let you know how it goes.

This year we will be starting near Lake City and traveling to Durango. When we arrive in Durango we will have completed nearly 500 miles of unbelievably beautiful trail! I am so excited to be on our last leg of this amazing journey and grateful to have had Easyboots along with us.

Carol Crisp

Boots and Feathers

When I first saw a hoof like this, I thought how on earth will I get a pair of boots on that? With the amount of feathers it seemed like a bit of trouble...

I had to try something because Tinky, my new Gypsy Vanner needed boots during his transition to barefoot. My boot of choice was the Easyboot Epic since it seemed like a good choice for his measurements. Also, I didn't want to try pressing the feathers into a full coverage boot like the Easyboot Trail. It may be possible to use a full coverage boot with a lot of feathers but my gut feeling told me a boot that fits under the coronary band was the right way to go. After trying it, I can say it works great and is not so much trouble after all!

So, how do I do it? After putting the boot on I gently lay the feathers from the back of hoof to the sides reaching forwards so it lays smooth in the back of gaiter. In front I split the feathers from the buckle and then use a hoof pick to pick up feathers from the front of the boot. This ensures there is no hair to get caught and strained when I push the buckle down.

In the summer we don't need extensions for the gaiter, but there is a tiny bit of effort required to get it in place.

For ultimate comfort, I use the hoof pick to gently pull up a tuft of feathers right in the front of the gaiter and then I can tighten it a bit more. I have never experienced any rubbing, discomfort or damage to the feathers using this method and Tinky loves his boots! Do not hesitate try booting your beautiful feathered horses.

Kicki Westman

Hoof Boots "Rescue" a Rescue

I recently became an EasyCare dealer and I received my first order of hoof boots a month ago. The following week I had my first experience with boots and it was a rather dramatic one. On June 10, a client brought home a new horse named Noah. Noah is a two year old gelding that she rescued from Fallon feedlot in Nevada. Like many rescues, his feet had been neglected and were in desperate need of a trim.

Noah's feet were quite overgrown.

Later that day, I received a phone call from the client - Noah was sore and hesitant to walk. Movement is a key ingredient to developing healthy hooves so this was not good news. It is not uncommon for a horse with neglected/overgrown hooves to have some sensitivity after a trim, especially with long toes/low heels but it should not effect their desire to move around. The next day, I drove to Noah's barn in the morning to fit his hooves with Easyboot Trails and Comfort Pads. I was so glad I had boots and pads on hand. I walked into Noah's corral and had to convince him first to get up, then to give me a foot and not wiggle long enough for me to apply the boot. Once he put weight on that booted foot, I did not have any trouble putting the remaining boots on.

Above is baby Noah with his new boots. Within minutes he went from "I don't want to get up and you can't make me" to following me around his corral accepting horse cookies as my apology. Thank heavens for hoof boots.

Ilona Chodnicka

UK Laws On Hoof Trimming Under Review

In the United Kingdom, owners of barefoot horses are facing an uncertain time as it has come to light that the FRC (farriers registration council) are seeking to regulate hoof care in its entirety and are proposing a change to the current law. Currently, the FRC regulates farriers (the definition of farrier in the UK being a person trained and qualified to trim and fit a metal shoe) but currently anyone can trim their own or someone else's horse or pony. Everyone that trims is governed by the animal welfare laws within the UK, and hoof care professionals must also demonstrate they are in line with the NOS (national occupational standard) which ensures that anyone working with horses feet has a duty of care and can be prosecuted if negligent. The proposed changes appear to challenge the right of horse owners to trim or maintain their horses hooves, and seeks to regulate any professional trimmer no matter where they learned their skill. 

However, the National Farrier Training Agency has lost its funding from the Skills Funding Agency after an appalling Ofsted report in June this year, and the NFTA is not currently taking on new apprentices (http://www.farrierytraining.co.uk/news-and-publications/publications/joint-press-release-on-the-future-of-the-delivery-of-farriery/). It should also be noted that there is currently no module in the course to cover the trim and importantly the diet and management of barefoot horses. This obviously raises the concern as to how qualified the FRC are to regulate non-farriers. 

We also have great concern that they wish to control the types of hoof protection we are allowed to use, they already deem an Easyboot Glue-On hoof boot to be a 'shoe' and hoof casts have also recently been added to the list of prohibited footwear (http://www.farrier-reg.gov.uk/information-and-resources/farriery-and-modern-materials). At present, removable hoof boots are allowed but with all the exciting developments in the world of hoof protection we feel it is important to maintain the freedom to protect our horses as we see fit. Sadly, the EasyShoe is one such new development that only a registered farrier is allowed to fit in the UK, yet the trim ideally suited to its use is clearly different from that required to fit a metal shoe!

In order to keep people informed, and form a case if required to defend our right to choose how we manage our barefoot horses, we have created a Facebook group and invite anyone from any country that has an interest in barefoot in the UK or feels they could help with our cause to join The Right to Trim:  www.facebook.com/groups/TheRightToTrim.

Lucy Nicholas
Easycare's UK distributor and owner/ trimmer of five happy barefoot horses
.

It's Super Boot!

Fast as a sneaky slithering rattlesnake. More powerful than the monster tires on a redneck's mud truck. Able to leap over giant stumps in a single stride. It's Super Boot!

Do you doubt the abilities of your horse's boots? ♫Here I am to save the day!♫ Oh wait - that was Mighty Mouse not Super Boot! Ok so enough silliness. Have you ever really though about just how incredibly durable Easyboot Gloves are? And do you really know how many miles a Glove can travel before the burial? As I was sorting through boots and packing up for Owyhee Fandango I picked up a pair of 0.5 Gloves that Thunder has been sporting on the hinds during endurance rides since last August. Yes I said LAST August, as in 2012. 

Just look at all the tread these boots have left. 

The gaiters look very good too. But you can see some wear there in the toe, a little thin spot where the cryptonite Idaho rocks weakened the structure.

When I add up the miles on these boots: 2 days of Pink Flamingo forest = 100 miles; 2 days of Old Selam trees, sand and creek crossings = another 100 miles; all 5 days of Owyhee Canyonlands rocks, creeks, canyons and more rocks and that was 250 miles; one day of Halloween for 50 miles on Thunder and one day on Blue's hinds with a ghastly ghoul along side; then in 2013 a 75 at Owyhee Tough Sucker it was rocks and deep sand; and then I put them on Blue's hinds for a roller coaster 50 at Eagle. That is 675 AERC miles! And they aren't ready for retirement yet.

And for those who think boots can be expensive lets do a little math. If you were to pay $75 for a Glove that works out to about 10 cents a mile. If you shoe your horse over the course of 6 months or more what does that cost per foot by comparison? I haven't shod a horse in ages so I'm not positive of the cost but I know it's more than 10 cents a mile. And if you get them for less than $75 (I'm counting shipping etc. at some places I have seen them listed) then the cost per mile is even less. Easyboot Gloves are a very economical choice for sure.

PS I had to come back and edit this to add another 60 miles on Blue through the Owyhee Fandango rocks down to the Snake River and back. Plus last week they did a 20 mile fun scenic ride from Adrian to the Owyhee River for some swimming. And they are still wearing like Super Boots!

Karen Bumgarner

Will That Boot Stay On?

If I had a nickel for every time I heard a customer ask "will that boot stay on?", I'd be rich man. Honestly, the answer is simple: yes, if it fits. The importance of fit can not be underestimated when it comes to having success in EasyCare boots. It amazes me that measuring for hoof boots is often times viewed as a huge inconvenience. Honestly folks, it is a straightforward and easy process.

I've heard people say "Well, he's a Thoroughbred so he's a size 3." Really? Guessing the correct size boot is not a valid option - keep in mind that at full speed a 1,000 pound Thoroughbred will place the equivalent of 100 times the force of gravity on each hoof with every stride, so fit is highly important. Imagine the following.

This boot is not a good fit - the large gap at the rear of the boot indicates
it's several sizes too big. Accurate measurements are a must!

 Wide load! On the flip side, this fit is several sizes too small.
No-one wants a muffin top.

Yes, I know I am pushing things a bit to the extreme here, but selecting the correct fit is the single most important thing your customers can do to make sure that they get the most out of their EasyCare hoof boots. We just added the Fitting Assistant to our website, so if your customers need additional assistance, please have them use all the resources that are available.

Let us help you - give us call if you have questions or need any assistance at 1-800-447-8836.

Congratulations: by reading this blog you are eligible to receive $100 off your next order. The winner will be selected Friday, July 5th.

Congratulations, by reading this blog you are eligible to receive $100 off your next order! The winner will be selected Friday, June 7th. - See more at: http://blog.easycareinc.com/blog/horse-boot-dealer-news-and-tips#sthash.XjVSjxXa.dpuf
Congratulations, by reading this blog you are eligible to receive $100 off your next order! The winner will be selected Friday, June 7th. - See more at: http://blog.easycareinc.com/blog/horse-boot-dealer-news-and-tips#sthash.XjVSjxXa.dpuf
Congratulations, by reading this blog you are eligible to receive $100 off your next order! The winner will be selected Friday, June 7th. - See more at: http://blog.easycareinc.com/blog/horse-boot-dealer-news-and-tips#sthash.XjVSjxXa.dpuf

Brian Mueller

easycare-sales-manager-brian-mueller

Director of Sales

As the director of sales, I am responsible for identifying new dealer opportunities and building on existing relationships to foster ideas and create additional growth.

 

Going Where Help is Needed - DHF on the Road

One of the most rewarding things I get to do in my life is help horses who are in desperate situations. Many times what the owner is trying hasn't been working for one reason or another and the horse is out of options. Sometimes helping these horses requires me to travel great distances from home. I have been all over the country helping all types of desperate horses. I feel very grateful to be involved in their care and see them get well.

On my latest trip, I had the pleasure of working with two amazing veterinarians, Dr. Linnea Theisen and Dr. Emily Gilmette of Eastern Equine Associates in New Bern, North Carolina. I met Dr. Gilmette several years ago at the International Hoof Care Summit in Cincinnati, OH, and we have since consulted with each other on a variety of cases. When I got the call from these ladies and they asked me to come south, I knew the situation must be bad.  

Here were the radiographs Dr. Theisen sent me of their initial evaluation of the horse:

I talked with the owner and he was glad to have me come and work with the veterinarians to help his horse. Here is what he looked like when I arrived:

As a team we worked on the horse for four hours. We gave him many breaks and took our time with each foot in order to do as much corrective trim work as possible that day. We used hoof boots and pads to protect the opposite foot while we were working which made it easier for him to stand.  

As I've described in other blog entries here in the past, my goals for rehabilitation with these types of horses is based on DDT/E: http://blog.easycareinc.com/blog/hoof-love-not-war/rehabilitation-of-the-insulin-resistant-foundered-horse-dhf-style.

Here are the horse's feet before and after trim work that day:

While all of us were together that day: two veterinarians, two farriers, the horse's caretaker, and my brother, we worked as a TEAM to help this horse get on the path to wellness:

  • We applied a rehabilitative trim aimed at correcting the capsular and phalangeal misalignment.
  • We discussed diet changes that would help the horse's uncontrolled metabolic condition.
  • We assessed the horse's environment and recommended management practices to support him through the rehabilitative process.

While this is just the first step in helping this horse get sound and happy, I feel really good about we achieved this first visit. Since then Dr. Theisen and Dr. Gilmette have been back to see the horse. While there, they soaked his feet with Clean Trax and worked on his teeth which needed attention. I look forward to the next visit in a few weeks and continuing our team effort to help this horse get well!  

For more information about the work we do at Daisy Haven Farm, Inc please see: www.DaisyHavenFarm.com .

July 2013: Kim's Farrier Service

Celebrating ten years in the hoof care business, Kim's Farrier Service is EasyCare's July, 2013 dealer of the month. Located in Chesapeake, Virginia, Kim Burnop of Kim's Farrier Service celebrates a ten-year milestone this month as a hoof care professional. Kim covers Southeastern Virginia and Northeastern North Carolina where she maintains a clientele of about 200 horses.

Opportunity knocks: Often one door closes and another opens. Such was the case when Kim found herself being laid off from her job in the Fall of 2002 which opened the door for a new career. As an avid horse enthusiast, Kim had always been intrigued by her farrier and the work done on her mare. Given this new opportunity, Kim jumped at the chance and enrolled in the Maryland Horseshoeing School and became a BWFA Certified Journeyman Farrier. Kim's Farrier Service was launched in July of 2003 and the rest, as they say, is history.

Kim fitting the Easyboot Back Country.

Keys to success: Kim believes in the basics. Honesty, great customer service and providing top notch work are what make her business thrive. In fact, Kim still works for her very first client. I'll venture to say not many can claim they still work for their very first client ten years later.

EasyCare hoof boots: Kim has been an EasyCare dealer for six and a half years and keeps her truck well stocked with a range of EasyCare hoof boots, pads and accessories. Stocking mostly the Easyboot Glove, Back Country and Trail boots, one entire side of her truck is dedicated to EasyCare products and the needs of a barefoot horse. When it comes to booting clients, she provides a thorough evaluation, fitting not only the horse but also considering the owner's needs. Kim test rides the various boots herself before offering them to clients. This enables her to effectively advise customers based on experience. Special care is taken to answer questions and she assists with the application and removal of the boots to ensure the client has a solid understanding and ultimately a positive experience.

Look at all those boots.

Education: Kim attended EasyCare's three day seminar in 2007 and credits that experience really gave her a jump start with the booting aspect of her business. She is grateful for the work EasyCare does to constantly improve the products and for the dealer support which helps her keep on top of the latest tips and tricks.

Giving back: Kim has served on the board for the Southeastern Association of Trail Riders, the Virginia Paint Horse Club and is involved with the Tidewater Horse Council where she has given booting clinics. Kim and her horse, Summer Breeze, are a crowd favorite on Career Day were she visits several elementary schools each spring in Chesapeake.

Rewards: Kim says it is very satisfying to have the respect of other farriers and veterinarians who often refer their clients to her when traditional methods are not suiting the horse. She also recalls an older gelding that was lame from laminitis and  various corrective shoeing attempts. The horse was put in a pair of Old Mac's G2s and Comfort Pads and he became a new horse. The owner was amazed that something so simple could make such a big change and was elated that the horse could be ridden again.

Elementary school children enjoy Kim's visit on Career Day.

Fun: When Kim is not working on horses, she enjoys riding her American Paint Horse mare, My Circuit Burner, a.k.a. Summer Breeze, on weekend trail rides and camping trips.

The Future:  Kim foresees a steady increase in booted horses thanks to the continuing improvements in boot designs and materials. As hoof boots evolve and the public becomes more informed, Kim feels more horse owners and farriers alike will be open to the proven benefits of hoof boot use.

Kim's shirts say it all.

Congratulations to Kim's Farrier Service on a decade of trimmin,' shoein' and bootin' for the ride.

Debbie Schwiebert

easycare-vet-hcp-deaaler-accounts-manager-debbie-schwiebert

Vet Dealer & Hoof Care Practitioner Accounts

I manage the hoof care practitioner and veterinarian dealer accounts at EasyCare. An integral part of my job is to stay current in all areas of barefoot hoof care, which enables me to serve this vital group of EasyCare dealers at the next level.