Even if you don’t work your horse hard enough to warrant performance boots or daily wraps…
it’s important to have these five boots and wraps in your tack room. You never know when you might need them!
Bell boots are there for your horse when his horseshoe nails are not. If your horse has a big expressive trot that is just made for tearing off shoes (look at that overreach of stride! Listen to that clink of metal! Oh… drat!), then bell boots are for you. Yes, they’re annoying to look for in the pasture when they inevitably get torn off by frolicking horses or sucking mud… but it’s better than looking for a horseshoe. Buy them in bright colors and have them on hand for horses who just can’t keep their shoes on.
Hoof boots come in a variety of shapes and models. Some are specifically for soaks, while some can be wrapped around the hoof as a kind of rubber-bottomed cast. Even if you swear by the old diaper-bootie with sugar-dine for abscesses, you never know when a hoof injury might strike, making a good hoof boot worth its price-tag. Sometimes, you need more than duct tape to keep a damaged hoof in one piece. More information on this subject can be read our blog post, Winter Horseshoe Options: https://equinefacilitydesign.com/equine-care/winter-horseshoe-options.htm
Polo wraps are those stretchy bandages that can go right on the lower leg for exercise — are a mainstay of any tack room. You never know when your horse might want a little extra support during work. Maybe the arena is harder than usual, or deeper. Maybe one hoof nicks the opposite fetlock during work or play and you want to keep the wound clean during your training session. Polo wraps also extend themselves to human use — they make great chaps in a jiffy if you find yourself without your usual pair.
Adhesive Elastic Wrap
Commonly sold as VetRap or Coflex, self-sticking elastic wraps are a must. Equally useful for wrapping halter chains and wrapping tails, they’re also helpful for making taut hoof wraps and for binding up gauze pads on leg injuries. Use caution when pulling elastic wrap tight, and always pad the skin beneath, as it can easily cut the skin if pressed tightly against it.
Non-stretchy standing wraps, wrapped over a cushion of flannel, sheepskin, or pillow wraps, come in handy for sore shins and leg injuries of every sort. Standing wraps are the leg wrap of choice whether horses need topical medication, ice pads, or just plain support in the stall. They’re also useful for shipping, providing extra support during long hauls in the trailer and preventing horses from stepping on themselves or banging their shins on bumpy roads.
Even if your barn is entirely populated by retired broodmares and trail horses, having the basic bandage supplies here is absolutely necessary for accident prevention and treatment. Keep these wraps on hand, and you’ll be ready for many situations — no panicked drive to the tack store required.