The Importance of Horse Boots on All Four Legs

Learn why it is beneficial to put horse boots, like sports medicine boots, on all four of your horse's legs. Brought to you by Professional's Choice.
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Learn why it is beneficial to put horse boots, like sports medicine boots, on all four of your horse's legs. Brought to you by Professional's Choice.

When it comes to booting your horse's legs, there are so many possibilities that you may find yourself with many questions. One of the most common questions we hear at Professional's Choice Sports Medicine Products is this one: "Should I boot all four of my horse's legs?"

Photo courtesy of Professional's Choice.

Photo courtesy of Professional's Choice.

Booting all four legs is beneficial to your horse's legs for many reasons. First, just like the front legs, the hind legs are prone to surface injuries from interference, or from brush and rocks lying along the ground. Booting your horse's back legs as well as the front legs ensures that your horse doesn't receive any scraps or bruises to the booted areas.

Supportive boots like Sports Medicine Boots also help to protect the hind legs as well as the front legs from muscle and tendon strains. Just like the front legs, the hind legs are susceptible to hyperextension and muscle sprains. By neglecting to place boots on your horse's hind legs, you run an additional risk of having internal leg injuries occur. While supportive boots are not a foolproof way to ensuring soundness, they do significantly decrease your horse's chances of developing suspensory-related injuries.

In addition, several studies on Sports Medicine Boots have noted that horses wearing supportive boots on their front legs but not the hind ones place a greater amount of weight on their forehand as opposed to when they do not wear any boots at all. Veterinarians decided that this was likely due to the fact that horses place more weight on the legs that feel most comfortable, in this case the ones with supportive boots. When all four legs are booted, however, the weight distribution returns to normal, suggesting that the best way to boot your horse is by protecting all four legs rather than just the front.