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Easyboot Grips

  • Grips_07_031
    We rode today in the snow and mud using Easyboot Grips on both of the horses. They did so well in them, even going up and down steep hills they never slipped. It was such fun!

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February 11, 2008


Tamera Arnold

I love the dome pads for horses that are already starting to concave. I also have a navicular horse that after he moved out of the frog pressure pads really loves the dome pads. I do not feel that they are very comfy for the horses that are foundered or have very thin soles. For these horses I like the regular thick pads.

Leslie Carrig

I'm really excited with the results I've been able to achieve using boots and pads with navicular horses. My interest started with my own horse. The back of his hooves were poorly developed, leaving him very sore when his shoes were pulled. I had to put him in my riding arena, so he would have a surface he could move on comfortably. I have ridden him from that day on in boots and pads. The most important thing in developing an unhealthy hoof is to make sure the horse is landing heel first. If that hurts he will avoid it and land toe first. Boots and pads are the only way to achieve this. When I go out on the rocky trails I use Bares with the Dome Pads. I've tried both Epics and Bares and my horse is much more comfortable in the Bares. They are less flexible than the Epic due to the extra sole. When I work in the sand arena I use Epics with the red(hardest) frog pad and a black(medium) sole pad. My horse couldn't have handled this much frog pressure at first, but now that he can, I am hoping to develope his digital cushion faster. He is only comfortable in this combo in the sand. To walk down the road for a cool down after, it is too much. What I have learned from him I take to my clients. Playing with the separate frog pads can be tricky unless you are very aware of your horses movement. The dome or comfort pads are always a safe bet. I have a client with a navicular horse she has not had sound in years. She is now riding in Bares with dome pads. Because she is new to boots I added down buckles to the Bares to make them easier to get on. Leslie

Rebecca Wyatt

Hi Karen,

I have personally seen the difference that pads can make for a horse. I've seen horses show a marked preference for pads inside their boots as compared with just boots.

One thing I have noticed, though, is that the density and thickness of the pad a horse likes can vary, depending on the horse and what his hooves are like. I think it's great that the Comfort Pads and Dome Pads are available and affordable. I've tried both styles and each has its advantages. The only caveat I have for the dome pads is that it's probably not the best for a flat-footed horse (especially with thin soles) because the extra thickness that normally fills the concavity of a hoof will just create a pressure point on a flat hoof.

Some other pads that are new to the market are the Happy Hoof Pads (http://www.happyhoofpads.com). I love that they come in so many densities and thicknesses, AND are affordable. I know of a few people that have used them, and the softer ones are especially appreciated by foundered horses (and I would imagine that the denser pads would be more supportive for healthy hooves).

Another pad I have tried is the Thinline hoof pad (like the saddle pads, but smaller!). My horse seemed to like them, but I didn't find them very durable (the outer edges were crumbling off after a 2-hour ride). Sometime soon, I plan on stacking 2 of these together to see if that helps them hold up any better.


Jeannie Welch

Hi Karen-
My horses seem to prefer the Dome pads and Epics. You really have to experiment and see what works best for your horse. I have also made my own pads out of a yoga matt. (Walmart, about $15) This is a cheap and easy solution when you are pressed for time. You can get quite a few out of 1 mat, and you can make frog pads out of the scraps. I used heavy duty kitchen shears to cut them out. Pads of this type are good for the initial stages of being barefoot because they are so soft, but they also tend to stay smushed and are only good for 1 or 2 rides. I will sometimes stack 2 smushed ones together to get more mileage out of them. Good Luck!!

Natalie Herman

I love the dome pads. They give more protection and last longer than the regular comfort pads. In fact, they saved my horse's feet on one really bad ride. I did the 2-day 100mile ride at Spanish Springs, CA. We rode on what I can only describe as "cobblestone" road type trail and true lava flows for 75% of the 2 days. Shod horses, even some with pads, were getting pulled both days. My horse was barefoot on all fours with Easyboot bares and brand new dome pads on. He was happy and sound all weekend and didn't even act slightly ouchy. I was able to see the beating his feet would have taken without the boots and without the pads especially, as when I took the dome pads out (remember, BRAND NEW pads), they looked like ones I have used in other boots for three months (aprox 250-400miles of riding). They were SO squished down. I am convinced he would have been sore in just normal boots or even boots with the thinner pads... I also like that they offer the foot frog and sole contact, which with a plain boot does not happen. It helps use all the hoof structures and helps build concavity. I don't even bother buying regular comfort pads, as the dome pads work so well. They also are useable for a long time. Once the edges wear down a little, they fit in the next size boot and so on. I go with one set from a size two boot on one horse, all the way to a 00 on my other horse. They last for 3-5 months (depending on if it is the endurance or trail horse) for me...


Hi Karen,

Personally, I didn't find an advantage to the dome pads. I use the 12 mm comfort pads and they seem to flatten along the edges (under the hoof wall). This essentially turns them into a dome pad.

My experience with boots began after I saw the Pete Ramey interview with Clinton Anderson. I had my farrier pull my horses shoes, bought Epics and began riding with boots and tried to transition to barefoot. My horse never really became comfortable-even with the boots. My farrier couldn't understand why-since the horse was a Morgan and had "good feet". Apparently the definition of "good feet" to a farrier and a barefoot trimmer differ. After about 4 months the horse became lame and was diagnosed with "caudal heel pain". I was told he had to be in bar shoes to be usable-eek!. He had severely contracted heels and he did improve while he was in these shoes. I was uneasy with the prognosis of a lifetime of metal shoes. I contacted a barefoot trimmer who immediately pulled his shoes, added pads to the Epics and he has been sound in padded boots ever since (1 1/2 years). Bottom line-pads make a huge difference.

Dawn Willoughby

I would never use boots without pads. I think Dr. Bowker said he would consider that loading the periphery (sp?).

Normal horse and owner doesn't have a ton of money then I use half inch black pads or domes if horse has concavity. Trick on Domes...don't center the cut-out but rather put it right at the top of pad so that the heel has as much thickness as possible. That's the area that gets flattened...heel first landing.

Person with a little money. Horse has been out of shoes for a while...I love the red pads with sole support. Thats what I use. They last a long time and horses love the harder concussion, or at least I would if I were a horse.

Navicular horse: give owner green and black sole pads, green pressure and support and tell them to play with it. Don't use pressure early on.

Founder: Green sole and frog support. Also try black and red frog support. Stay with Green on sole to soften the blow of the coffin bone.

Pencil Frog, no thrush: Try black or red sole pad with green pressure or support frog pads. Tell owner to use one one day and the other another day. Does the horse go better? Is he sore?

Has Thrush: stick with green frog support and make it the owners mission in life to get rid of the thrush.

**reminder Horse might be sore because he felt so good that he over did it!

Some how I ended up with 2 pairs of lightly used Boas. I always use quarter inch pads with them. I think the half inch is too much for how that boot fits. They're for sale.

Its not so easy fitting the G2's with the sole/frog pads. I haven't checked lately to see if G2 sizes are on there.

Karen...you lines on the sole/frog pads don't work for Epics...at least not for me. I always have to cut much more off the bottom to get them to fit. I get the sole pad in 80%, line up the frog pad, then slip the whole thing in. Also I cut a line just a half inch from the frog shape, parallel to the frog shape. (thats clear as mud)

Using the entire pad takes too much space and the boot won't fit.

What's my biggest challenge??? **Karen** would you please send us an organizer for all these frickin' pads! ;) I try to keep a modest sample in an Easy Care bag for the car...a VW BUG! LOL...gas you know. Tomorrow I plan Operation PADS...reorganize! My husband gave me half the garage shelves. It's a mess!

Heel Balm

My sister uses these boots on her horse, great for wet conditions :)

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