Written by EasyCare Customer, Carly Campbell

The EasyShoe Versa Grip Octo application process was a breeze! I did not have a hoof buffy or sand paper, so I used my rasp to clean up and rough up the outer hoof wall to provide better attachment points for the glue to sink in and grab ahold of. The Super Glue dried much faster than acrylic.

Because of the simplicity of the process, I’ll admit, I was doubtful. I have horses that live out 24/7 in Mississippi with rain, mud, grass, rocks, clay, and humidity. But the shoes have stayed on, even through a spurt of tornado weather, warm and humidity to wet clay mud and freezing temperatures!

As an endurance rider, the shoes I use must endure any terrain and weather from below freezing to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, dry sandy or rocky trail to slick, sucking mud, and of course humidity. I’ve been impressed with the Versa Grip Octo’s ability to stick to and move with the hoof wall. As temperature and humidity changes, the hoof wall expands, contracts, not to mention movement as the horse loads and unloads the foot. I’m loving the fact that the hoof can still do all these incredible things and the shoe goes with it.

Another consideration I had in placing these shoes was the movement of this particular mare. She’s notorious for twisting boots off due to her movement. She not only trots but has a few extra gaits. The shoes stayed with her and managed the torque a gaited movement puts on the shoe.

I did my application totally solo and it was a breeze. Dyeing the shoes I think was the most challenging part, or at least controlling the spread of glitter. I do love the fact that these shoes are easy to customize, as I made my pair glow in the dark! As a 100 mile rider, there’s nothing worse than starting in pre-dawn darkness and worrying if you’ve lost a shoe in the chaos of the first few miles. So many times I wished I could look down and see my steel, aluminum, or composite shoes or boots! So I fixed that concern by making them glow! A quick glance and I can be reassured they’re still there!

I like that the tabs are pre-welded as that eliminates user error when it comes to shoe failure, but I feel that this may increase the risk of ill-fitted shoes. Typically when I shoe with nails, I will trim the foot, place the shoe with two holding nails and bring the foot forward to back the toe up. Of course with tabs, I had to back the toe up before the shoe went on so there was some guesswork in that aspect of application. However, with more experience and practice with the shoe fit and placement, I know this wouldn’t be an issue. For riders just starting their glue shoe journey, I could see this steepening the learning curve.

Overall, I would recommend these for a beginner gluer. Simple hoof prep, simple application, endless possibilities! I love the creative nature of EasyCare and plan to continue supporting barefoot horses with protection when necessary. If the Octo and Super Glue can survive freezing cold humidity and warm wet humidity, all combined with shoe-sucking clay mud of Mississippi, I have no doubt they’ll survive a tough trail for 50 miles.  Cheers to happy horses and riders!


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