Please note that this advice page is quite old and hasn't been updated to reflect newer boot models and accessories. We are currently working on updating this page.
Problem: Boots twisting when in use
Likely causes: With most makes of hoof boot, this usually occurs when the boot is too wide. It is particularly common on hind feet as many horses have a tendency to ‘screw’ their foot on the floor causing the boot to twist. With Renegade hoof boots, twisting can also be a sign that the boot is too tight a fit – a tightly fitting shell is not important for these boots to perform properly, as the heel captivator is the main means of boot retention.
Solutions (based on boot type):
Renegades – check your measurements – it may be that you need to go up a size. If the shell fits fine – check your cable and straps are properly adjusted. It is possible to mix and match the sizes of straps and the heel captivator if you still find you are having trouble, or carry out a boot modification to custom fit the boot to your horse (although this is a relatively complicated procedure!).If the shell is tight, try having your horse trimmed and see if that helps - you may need to increase the frequency of your trimming.
Trails or Old Mac G2 boots - try using them with inserts to really grip the hoof. You can also try using gaiters, and possibly a pad, to fill in any extra space.
Gloves – Make sure your gaiter is tight enough. You could try wrapping Vet Wrap around the hoof, 3 or 4 times below the coronet band – this should help create a better connection between the hoof and the top of the boot. If this fails, you could try adding a power strap.
If an Easyboot or Epic is used, you can tighten the boot more successfully by using the Easy-Up buckle we sell, or glueing two squares of dense foam either side on the plate of the heel strap for additional grip if the width allows. Using a 6mm or 12mm comfort pad may also help by tightening the fit slightly.
Problem: Boots Rubbing
Likely causes: Rubbing will occur on the heels if the boot is too short in the length. Usually more common in horses with under run heels, or boots that fit above the coronet band.
Solutions (based on boot type):
Renegades – an improperly positioned heel captivator may cause rubbing to the heels, so check this is properly adjusted and positioned.
Trails/Old Mac G2s/Boot that fit above the hairline in general - use gaiters, pastern wraps or if these take up too much room, old woollen socks, tube grip or Vet Wrap also works very well.
For Epics/Bares, you can remove the heel strap and replace it with taper plates, or cut the heel strap down along the groves (this method also woks for horses with low/under run heels).
Other boots - Go to the next size up boot if the length measurement exceeds the recommended length for that boot size.
Problem: Horse is footsore, even in boots
Likely causes: Dropped or thin soles, laminitis, other hoof pathology
Solutions (based on boot type): Use 12mm comfort pads inside your boots. If your boots are Renegades, Gloves or the Back Country, you cannot use a pad this thick so you will need to use another boot, ideally a Trail or Old Mac G2, until your horse is more comfortable
Problem: Boots coming off
Likely causes: Hoof boot is not the best fit for the hoof or was not fitted correctly/tightly enough. Most common cause is the horse treading on himself during exercise, either overreaching or spooking. The parts of the boots are designed to break to prevent a serious accident, if the boot didn’t break the horse could be brought down!
Solutions: All boots – Take fresh measurements and check that the size and type of hoof boot you are using is the one best suited to your horse. Check the front boots aren’t too long for the hoof. Length that is over 5mm longer than the horses’ actual measurements is enough to slow the front hoof down long enough for a hind foot to come through and tread the boot off. Over reach boots on any booted hoof can sometimes help if all other angles have been covered, but as with shoes, some horses will always be at risk of lost boots as they would be with shoes.