Ice skating is fun for us; less fun for our horses. As mud starts sucking off shoes and ice starts balling up in hooves, you might turn your attention to how in the world you can keep your horses sound, shod and upright through the worst of winter. Boots, shoe rims and rubber shoes are some winter hoof care solutions, including the following products.
EasyShoe with EasyCare Quick Studs
A urethane adhesive is all that's needed to hold EasyCare's EasyShoe in place through the muck and mire. (These can be nailed on like traditional shoes, too.) Install the EasyCare Quick Studs to the bottom of the EasyShoe with an electric drill before putting on the shoes for extra traction. The company's website offers how-to videos, user testimonials, and photos for you and your farrier to navigate this rubber-shoe territory. For more information visit easycareinc.com.
Castle Plastics Hind-Pattern SnoRim and
The Castle Plastics SnoRim shoe pad is now available for front and hind feet in orange, black, clear and 2-degree pads. These pads keep mud, ice and snow from building up between the shoe and the sole of the feet and reduce concussion. The SnoRims are designed to fit a variety of shoes, including square toes. The addition of the orange-colored pads this year is an offer of help to horse owners who have to roam the pastures looking for lost shoes. For more information visit castleplastics.com.
Stride Equus Marquis Boots
When the winter gets to be too much, the Marquis Boots from Stride Equus offers the equine equivalent of four-wheel drive. The easy-to-insert Marquis Studs offer even more traction. These flexible hoof boots have an inflatable air chamber for best fit and are available in six sizes for everything from ponies to drafts. The boots come with a six-month warranty against defects in material and workmanship. For more information visit marquisboot.com.
Blue Pegasos Terraflex Shoes
With three material densities and the option of clips or no clips, these polyurethane horse shoes are designed for horses who require all range of hoof support. The Terraflex Shoes are meant to be nailed on and can be modified with studs for really tricky footing conditions. Coming later this winter, Blue Pegasos is about to release glue-on shoes with adhesive tabs. For more information visit bluepegasos.com.
Editor's note: Inclusion in this article does not infer endorsement.