The hoof boot market has literally exploded the last five or so years with option after option of boots for just about every individual situation. The addition of the EasyShoe allows for longer term protection while the various boot models allow for fitting different types of horses with different shapes of hooves and different needs. Although you may love a specific boot (my main squeeze is still the Easyboot Glove), don't discount the other models!
Recently I acquired a new gelding that I fell in love with years ago. When the chance came to make him mine, I jumped on it. Unfortunately, the day before we were to make a fairly long trip to go get him, he tore off his medial heel on the left front foot. I was told he was not able to go barefoot for this reason, and that shoes were necessary to keep his feet intact.
Falling in love, all those years ago.
Still in love, today.
Although he was barefoot when we got him, his hooves were not functional as we come to expect our barefoot horses and we were facing the somewhat dreaded transition period. In addition, we were also dealing with an injury to the hoof, which occurred because he was far overdue for a trim. Unfortunately the poor guy was pretty dang sore, and the frozen ground certainly didn't help any. Into the transition toolbox we dove!
Owie. And very much needing a trim. I've never actually seen blood come from a hoof before.
The other front, untrimmed. The hinds were chipped out, but not nearly as severe as the left front.
After getting his poor hooves trimmed up, I outfitted him in a set of my trusty old Gloves. He was immediately more comfortable and lived in Gloves for a couple days. In the meantime, my veterinarian husband had been raving about the positive changes in a couple client horse after he set them up with the new Easyboot Transitions. Well heck! Let's do this! I was thrilled to see the difference in this guy's gaits after spending a night in his Transitions, and was even more thrilled as he continued to move better and better throughout the week. While he was absolutely much, much more comfortable in his Gloves than he was barefoot, the Transitions were the bee's knee's at that time for this horse. Sold. Don't count these suckers out. They are now a necessity in my toolbox. While they may look like a combo of a couple different boots, there is something wicked special about the sole, peeps. It must feel like walking on a cloud or taking a Valium or something because the difference in this horse after merely putting them on, and the changes my husband and his clients saw in their horses were the real deal. Going from meh to Oh Meh Gosh awesome!
We spent a month putting his Transitions on and taking them off to prevent rubbing (which we never had, but having never worn boots previously, I was concerned) and let him move around a bit with his new feet. His previously wide open central sulcus began to close and the broken hoof began to heel. At that point he was moving pretty well and I was ready to start riding my new boy. Enter, EasyShoe Performance! This new toy is totally a game-changer, peeps. Not only are we now able to give the horse 24/7 protection, their feet can still expand and contract and continue to grow without wearing anything off. All the while leaving the sole uncovered. This horse positively floated in his EasyShoes over the worst of frozen ground, landing strong heel-first and further stimulating/developing the back of the foot. In giving him this protection, he confidently ran, played and pretty much never quit moving. He grew a ton of foot in just a short four-week period, and has been happily barefoot since we removed his shoes four weeks after putting them on.
Today, we rode. I popped on our Gloves and off we went. While it's going to take a while to grow out the heel that is no longer, he is one sound, happy pony. After a fantastic ride today, I was reflecting on our options and how easy these choices have made a potentially difficult transition. Obviously three months time is not the end of the road, but those three months could have been a completely different ball game. Our ball game at this time consists of riding. Bring it on!