Bell Boots vs. Over Reach Boots – Head to Head Comparison

As a human being if you have a horse you should care about it. Be careful along with their health you should give the attention to their feet also. Over reach boots and bell boots both are ready to protect your horse from injuries. They look very similar to each other.

Over Reach Boots Vs Bell Boots

Both of them surround the horse’s ankle and protect it from overreaching. For instance, you often get confused that what boots you should buy.

But, because the boots are so similar in their appearance and their performance, which one you should choose between the two?

Well, don’t be worried my friends, as a horse lover here I’m to help you. Now I’m going to speak with you the differences between over reach boots vs bell boots. Above all I’ll try to give an idea about both of the boots along with their types, their uses, and so on.

What Is Over Reach Boots?

What are Over Reach Boots

Over reach boot is one kind of boot that goes over the front hooves of your horses. It offers protection to horses to their pastern, coronet band along with hoof’s hell and bulb. They can help to prevent overreaching and other strikes too by surrounding the entire hoof.

When a hind hoof hit the front hoof with his soft heel then it is called overreaching.

Various Types Of Overreach Boots

There are various types of overreach boots. Here you may get some idea of their different type.

Rubber Or Plastic Over Reach Boots:

If you want the cheapest overreach boot to buy then the rubber or plastic overreach boots are the best. It is made with Velcro or alternative straps. These boots are also the easiest to put on.

Neoprene Over Reach Boots:

Correspondingly you want the more soft and thick overreach boots? Then your choice can become neoprene overreach boots. Though neoprene is made in the same way as rubber or plastic versions. Nevertheless they are softer and thicker than them. Neoprene is more durable and more comfortable.

Solid Materials Over Reach Boots:

Boots with hard or solid materials. It becomes the toughest boots. To stop the turnaround of the boot at the time of the horse moving a ‘no-turn nodule’ is often fitted inside it.

Some Good Things About Over Reach Boots

Over reach boots are very popular for horses. They are delicate in nature. Many horse trainers choose this boot for training. These boots are a popular choice for hacking, show jumping, lunging, flatwork, cross country, and many other activities.

They are also used for turnout too many horse holders. To prevent a horse to stand on the heel of its front shoe and also pulling it off these boots can help. These boots are also popular with the horses having back shoes on. Because they become the reason for damage when overreaching.

There are some horses who overreach naturally more than the others. For this, they may need to wear these for their all activities. However, the other horses may wear them only when jumping. Because wearing them they may reduce the increased risk of injury.

Overreach boots are also can wear on the hind hooves as they protect from brushing strikes.

How To Fit Over Reach Boot

You have to select the perfect overreach boot for your horse. The too tight and too loose boot will not be comfortable for the horse. Though these boots sit around the pastern too loose boot is likely to rub.

On the other hand, too tight a boot will be uncomfortable. If there is any anti-spin ‘bump’ or tubercle, this should be settled between the heel and the bulb.

What Are Bell Boots?

What Are Bell Boots

Bell boot is an integral item for the protection of horses from overreaching. It covers the front feet of a horse above the coronary band from the heel. At the time of riding or turnout, it may create a barrier as if the hind feet can’t overreach the front feet.

Various Types Of Bell Boots Style

Let’s talk about the types of bell boots. Here you get some idea:

Pull-On Bell Boots: Pull-on bell boots are usually made of rubber. They have no type of opening. They are safer because they have little chance of slipping off. They offer full protection as they stand on a wet footing or cold atmosphere. But they are slightly difficult to put on and remove.

Open Bell Boots:

Open bell boots are the easiest to put on. They are usually more costly than pull-on boots. They simply wrap with hook and loop closures. But care should be essential to ensure the hook and loop fasteners are kept clean and unbroken. So the boots close safely.

No Turn Bell Boots:

This style of bell boot is a tight-fitting boot including a bulb notch for keeping the boot in place. This design obstructs the boot from rotation.  But this particular boot is not comfortable for long-term wear.

Some Good Things About Bell Boots

Overreaching is so harmful to a horse. It may occur when the hind feet try to step off the front shoes on the back and pull them off. You know bell boots fit around the pastern along over the hoof.

Thus it hampers the injury of the hoof and hairline. Bell boots also prevent shoe-polling. Because there are some horses who tend to put their feet on their own feet. In some instances, the use of bell boots for hind feet also benefits.

Some horses that supposed to miss out on their hind shoe. Therefore clip marks and abrasions can develop above the coronary band on their hind feet. Hence, properly fitted bell boots may be the way of lessening these problems.

How To Fit Bell Boots

Bell boots size is very important to fit perfectly to your horse feet. When the horse stands on a surface level the base back rim of the boot barely meets the ground. One of your fingers should fit between the inner rim of the bell boot and the pastern.

Too big or too small boots should avoid. As the boot is too big they become the cause of stumble to your horse. In contrast, if the boot is too small they provide inadequate protection. Along with they may cause abrasions to the horse’s skin.

Difference Between Bell Boots And Overreach Boots

Overreach boots and bell boots both the term are both used mutually and relate to the same defensive gear. Both of them are planned to defend horses from injuries. They protect the horses while their hind foot hits the bulbs of the heel of their front heel.

The term ‘overreach’ means both an action and a wound when this happens. This overreaching occurs when the horse is working on a slippery surface, jumping, running cross country, etc.

Generally, the lower pastern, hell bulb, and the coronary band are the common area of damage. Moreover, damage for the sake of overreaching can be intolerable. Hence wearing a protective cover such as bell boots or overreach boots becomes necessary.

So during their riding activities or routine works where many horses are involved they need extra care. Then it is essential to cover their feet with bell boots or overreach boots.

Causes of The Discomfort of Wearing Bell Boots and Over Reach Boots:

Bell boots and over reach boots are the first line of defense for a horse. Because by wearing it a horse can prevent injury with its own keen back feet. Therefore, a bell boot may irritate and cause trouble to a horse.

This may occur when the material by which the boot is made is too hard. Again if the horse’s skin is sensitive then it becomes irritating for the horse.

Tips To Feel Comfortable With Your Horses When Wearing Over Reach Boots Or Bell Boots:

Here are some tips which may become helpful for your horse when they wear their boots.

  •  Supervise the boots before using them.  Slight tears also in them can pester your horse’s skin. Also, inspect the boot after using them.
  • Wipe your horse’s hoof before placing boots. Because dirt becomes the cause of skin sores. 
  • After finishing your horse ride or other activities please take off your boots. AS if their lower legs get air and the hair and skin become dry.
  • Clean your horse boots and give special attention to getting out the dirt from the top rim and inside.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Use Over Reach Boots Or Bell Boots On Horses?

Both of the boots can help to prevent your horse from overreach injuries. They can help to protect the pastern, coronet band, bulb, and shoe.

When Does My Horse Need To Wear Bell Boots?

Some horses only require them while riding or while turned out.  Others may live in their bell boots day and night. It will depend on a few factors. Young horses that are not balanced properly yet will easily kick their front hooves by their hind hooves. Shod horses also do this in this way.

Which Is The Best One In Which?

It depends on which reason you are using them. If your horse has a need to put on them all the time therefore you have to select a more flexible one. Again when it is a time of competition or riding then a couple of no-turn technology is worth considering.

Conclusion

The overall intention of over reach boots and bell boots is to safeguard the heel area of your horse. Both of them give the protection of horses from overreaching. When the front feet tender heel bulb faces the strike of hind feet they become injured.

Sometimes this injury may create a permanent damage to your loving horse. Therefore, considering your horses comfort and ensuring their fitness you should protect their feet with over reach boots or bell boots.

So, now it’s your turn to select the boots from over reach boots vs bell boots for your beloved horse.

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