Horse Boot Protection With Patrick Smith
Leg protection is an important aspect of horse health.
June 22, 2016
From AQHA Corporate Partner Professional’s Choice
Whether you’re a serious competitor or backyard horseman, chances are you would do anything to protect your horse from harm. When it comes to preventing ligament and suspensory injuries, using the right horse leg gear can be the determining factor in your horse’s health and soundness.
Professional’s Choice recently released a video about its Sports Medicine Boots with world champion team roper Patrick Smith. Patrick describes why he chooses VenTECH Elite boots, explains the design and shows how to put them on correctly.
In addition to protecting your horse’s legs, don’t forget about his hooves! Download AQHA’s Equine Hoof Health report to learn about common hoof problems, correct shoeing techniques and how to safely handle your horse’s feet.
Protection All the Way Around
“There’s a lot of boots out there. I’ve used a lot of the different horse boots in my career, and the Professional’s Choice VenTECH Elite is the boot that I choose to use. They’re made for protection, and this is something that I think is overlooked. A lot of people are paying 30, 40, 50-plus thousand dollars for horses, and they don’t spend very much money on protection for their horse.
“This is the cheapest insurance you can have on these animals. …You’ve got four tires on your car. You don’t just check the front ones; you want to check all of them. That’s something I’m big on, is making sure that my horse is protected all the way around.”
About the VenTECH Elites Boot
“These boots are great for support. It’s a stretchy material (and) it’s contoured very well. There’s a lot of detail in this boot. …You can see all this extra stitching that they’ve got in here that you won’t see on a lot of other boots. That stitching is to help contour this to a horse’s leg. The same way that boots fit us or shoes fit us, it’s important that it’s a comfortable fit once you put it on.
“The reason it’s called VenTECH is (the) breathable material. So when I wrap this on this horse’s leg and the temperature starts getting up there … that heat can escape (and) that sweat can escape. It keeps that horse’s leg from getting too hot and getting blistered. Instead, it lets it breathe, again, making him more comfortable.”
No matter your event, a horse’s hooves and legs must be healthy to promote soundness and performance. Learn the ins and outs of proper hoof care in AQHA’s Equine Hoof Health report. Download it today!
Putting It on Correctly
“This was designed to support the suspensory on this horse. So, what I’m gonna do is wrap this around, go underneath (and) pull it up at a 45-degree angle. So many times, I see guys just strap it across. ...That’s not what these are for. These are designed to be on, to be tight and to be fitted to a horse’s leg.
“We want to make sure we get (the) strap around and at a 45-degree angle. Then, I’m gonna go up one to the next strap, pull it tight, next one, pull it tight. And then, finish off with the top one and pull it tight. Now, I’ve got a good fit on my horse. It looks good. It’s comfortable to him. And it’s supporting the ligaments and suspensory … Again, keeping him safe throughout the day and comfortable.
“(It’s) cheap insurance for an animal that’s worth as much as he is to me.”
Check out AQHA's Horse Health Pinterest board for even more tips on keeping your horse happy, healthy and sound.