Brushing Boots: 9 Important Questions to Ask (Before Buying)

Horses always have their body parts exposed which is why several companies have already made various products and equipment that owners can put on their horses. This serves as a protection for them to prevent injuries. Leg boots would probably be one of the most sought out gear for protection in horses.

Without a doubt, horses need to have their legs protected from injuries and this is why brushing boots were introduced to the equine world. The question is, are these effective? Do they work or would it be better to just let a horse’s legs be free from such equipment?

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What Is Brushing Boots?

Brushing boots are a type of boots that offer protection to a horse’s legs, specifically the lower part.

Brushing boots had a few different names in the past, they were previously known as splint boots. Then came along other names for this protective leg boot such as fetlock boots and ankle boots.

So if you ever come across boots that are named like this, don’t get confused since they’re all the same boot, they’re just named differently.

Going back to what brushing boots are, let’s not go far and take a look at the name itself. We can easily derive what these boots are just by looking at their name, brushing boots are protective gear that targets to guard the hind legs of a horse.

Injuries happen to a horse’s leg/s due to hock hitting. Hock hitting happens when the front limbs hit the hind limb, both being on the same side of the horse. The hock is the area in which the front legs come in contact with which causes the injuries.

Apart from preventing hock-hitting injuries, brushing boots also prevent brushing injuries. Brushing injuries mean that the legs sustain injuries due to uncoordinated gaits. The hooves would hit each other when a horse is moving fast, could either be jumping or galloping.

Brushing boots are designed to effectively protect a horse’s hind legs from all the aforementioned injuries. When worn, the brushing boots would start from beneath the knee of the horse and down to the inside of the leg. This doesn’t inhibit their jumping capabilities and offers nothing but protection to a horse.

Brushing boots are often used for sports that require jumping (e.g. show jumping). When it comes to design, the brushing boots come in two types, the first type of brushing boot would have padding in them to protect the fetlock, on the other hand, the second brushing boot has a function wherein it wraps around the back part of a horse’s joints, leaving the front portion of the boot open.

What Are Brushing Boots Used For?

Brushing boots are used for protecting a horse’s hind legs from injuries like brushing and hock hitting.

Brushing boots are infused with a hard interior shell that would function as a protection for the hind legs while the exterior part of the boots is made out of neoprene.

In the past, brushing boots were made out of organic materials but now, people have shifted to using neoprene and other synthetic materials.

The main purpose of brushing boots is to prevent injuries, whether severe injuries or minor scratches, brushing boots can handle them.

What’s The Difference Between Brushing Boots And Tendon Boots?

The difference between brushing boots and tendon boots is the former protects the lower legs of a horse, the latter focuses on protecting the tendons.

Brushing boots are commonly used during activities that require fast movement from horses. This is to prevent the horses from inflicting brushing injuries on themselves due to their opposite leg or hoof.

On the other hand, tendon boots are placed on the front legs instead of the back. The boots are placed in this area because this is where the tendon is located and that’s exactly what they’re for, protecting the tendons.

The rear hooves tend to hit the tendons when they move too fast or whenever they land from a jump. This type of leg boot is widely known in the sport of show jumping, and due to its reliability,  it’s continuously being used by a lot of competitors that compete in the sport of show jumping.

Are Brushing Boots The Same As Jumping Boots?

Yes, brushing boots are just the same as jumping boots. We’ve already established that brushing boots are always being used in show jumping sports, so technically, these two boots are just the same thing.

Both boots offer the same function and benefits, so jumping boots are just another name coined for the brushing boots.

When horses jump, they expose themselves to a high probability of sustaining splints, bruises, and scratches. They often get these from hitting objects such as barrels and fences, so this is why jumping boots (a.k.a. brushing boots) are being used during show jumping.

So that’s it, don’t confuse these two terms from being different from each other. They’re the same because they both share the same function

Can You Wear Brushing Boots In Dressage?

Yes, horses can wear brushing boots during dressage, however, it’s a rare occurrence. Since there’s a specific kind of leg boot for dressage sports people would choose this over the brushing boots.

It’s common sense that people would naturally gravitate for a leg boot that’s specifically used for a particular sport. In this case, we are talking about dressage boots. If a person were to choose between a brushing boot and a dressage boot when competing in a dressage sport, of course, they would choose the latter.

That doesn’t mean that the brushing boots are completely useless, no. It’s just that dressage boots are specifically made for dressage, that’s all.

The function of dressage boots would be to protect the tendons and ligaments from injuries, also, these boots are perfect for horses that tend to overreach.

Can You Use Brushing Boots For Cross Country?

No, regular brushing boots can’t be used for cross country since they’re not strong enough to withstand the intensity of this equine discipline.

Since brushing boots can’t be used for cross country, it’s a good thing that there’s actually a specific leg boot for the equine discipline that is cross country.

These are called the cross country boots and these are an upgraded version of the brushing boots since it’s reinforced with added protection to match up with the intensity of cross country.

Cross country boots are beneficial for horses that embark on the cross country discipline since it offers them top-notch protection in their lower legs. Cross country boots have excellent shock absorption and can prevent horses from getting injured from obstacles such as fences.

Another thing about these boots that make them so durable is their water-resistant feature. These are great for cross country, considering what kind of environment horses get themselves into when doing cross country.

Can You Use Brushing Boots For Back Legs?

Yes, brushing boots can be used for back legs, as a matter of fact, brushing boots can be used for all four legs. This provides maximum protection to the horses because they’re always exposed to things that could hurt them.

Some people think that leg boots in general are solely used for a specific leg (front legs only or hind legs only). The thing is, that’s not true at all. Leg boots can be used for all four legs of a horse, no matter what type of leg boot it may be.

Every type of leg boot serves a purpose and this is to protect a horse’s limbs/legs. So go ahead and purchase leg boots for your horse and equip them on all four legs for added protection.

Do Brushing Boots Protect Tendons?

No, brushing boots don’t protect tendons, but tendon boots do.

Although both boots may share some similarities, the distinct difference that tendon boots have is their material (which makes up the majority of the boots).

These are made out of hard plastic while brushing boots on the other hand are softer and are usually made out of neoprene.

People made use of a hard exterior shell for the tendon boots because this does a good job of keeping the tendons protected. Also, tendon boots have great shock absorption.

Since these boots are so tough, owners that compete for show-jumping and cross country use tendon boots. This just gives horses a feeling of being secure since they have leg boots to support them as they land on the ground from a jump and whatnot.

Another amazing thing about tendon boots is their ability to not only provide protection for the tendons but also the ligaments and fetlocks as well.

Can Brushing Boots Be Used For Jumping?

Yes, brushing boots can be used for jumping. Since the material inside the brushing boots is hard, that offers protection and support to a horse.

Oftentimes, brushing boots can also be used with tendon boots at the same time. This doubles the protection for horses so that they won’t sustain severe injuries.

Brushing boots are commonly used for equine sports that require swift movements such as jumping, riding, exercising, and turnouts, with that being said, horses are more exposed to injuries. To prevent that, brushing boots can be worn for such equine disciplines.

Best Brushing Boots

We have scavenged the internet in search of the best brushing boots for your horses. Feel free to experiment with the products shown below, and hopefully, you find the perfect leg boot for your horse.

Breathable

These particular brushing boots have soft and durable materials and provide a breathable experience for your horse once they have it on their legs.

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Dressage

If owners are looking for a perfect pair of dressage boots, then they should try out the Kavallerie Dressage Boots. These are breathable, they look sleek, they have a nice shock absorption feature, they’re easy to wear and take off, and they are easy to clean.

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Equine

If owners want something laid back and simple, they can opt for these boots.

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Ventilated

These boots have a loose fit that would ensure that the legs of horses are well-ventilated.

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Lightweight

Due to the lightweight nature of this tendon boot, it will offer long-lasting comfort to the horse, almost as if it’s not wearing anything on its legs. It’s snug, stretchy, and offers maximum protection.

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For Cobs

Cobs are a type of horse and there are brushing boots that are made for these types of horses as well. This is because their size is different from the other horses (they come in smaller sizes which are similar to ponies).

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For Hacking

Regular brushing boots can be used for hacking, so the Woof Wear Brushing Boots can offer protection when horses engage in this sort of activity.

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For Turnout

Horses need to roam around in pastures freely from time to time, and what better way to protect their legs as they turnout than to introduce them to brushing boots. The LaMieux is a durable padded leather boot that has the ability to protect your horse’s legs.

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Resources:

https://www.farmhousetack.com/blogs/barn-blog/riders-guide-to-horse-boots

https://www.hookseurope.com/hooks-academy/horse-equipment/leg-boots

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