You’ve likely seen them on a horse or two. Some horse owners use them every ride, while others put them on for turnout. Bell boots offer protection to the heel area. They’re put onto the horse’s front hooves. These boots also come in a wide range of styles and colors, including pull-on designs, velcro, glitter, unique prints, rubber, and nylon materials.
Purpose of Bell Boots
Not all horses need bell boots, but those prone to overreaching should use them. Overreaching is when the horse’s hind hooves strike the back of their front hooves. They will often hit the delicate heel bulb and coronary band. This can cause pain, swelling, and even bleeding. Some injuries result in permanent damage.
Bell boots can be put on to prevent injury. They should sit loosely on the horse’s pastern. A finger should fit between the boot and their leg. Additionally, the back of the boot will almost touch the ground when standing still. Most come in a range of sizes, so make sure to follow the manufacturer’s sizing guide.
These protective boots come in many different designs. Some like the rubber pull-ons, while others prefer the nylon velcro kind. Fleece around the top is a good idea to prevent chafing.
Some cowgirls like to get fun prints like leopard, cactus, and neon colors. The options are endless!
If you need help putting them on, check out this tutorial:
Many disciplines like barrel racing, reining, and jumping turn to bell boots for protection. Overreach is very common is these sports, so preventing an injury is key!