One of the most important aspects of the manufacture of boots for humans and horses alike is the material used. For riders, choosing between leather and rubber constructions along with various interior linings is a key decision to make. You want to ensure that you choose boots that are durable, stylish, easy to clean, breathable, comfortable, and a whole host of other considerations. The matter is no less important for horses.
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at what some of the most common materials for horse boots offer.
Leather and Faux-Leather Options
A leather horse boot exudes class. Among horse boot materials, leather is as classic and stylish as it gets. Leather looks great, provides good durability, and exudes a sense of equestrian class that can be a huge plus when entering professional dressage competitions, where grace is paramount and every little detail is scrutinized.
If you like the look of leather, but not the price, or are otherwise opposed to leather, faux-leather horse boots may be the perfect solution. They offer much of the same aesthetic elegance as genuine leather at a fraction of the cost.
Leather and faux-leather are most commonly used in open front horse boots as well as those protecting your horse’s fetlock.
If you have ever worn leather or faux-leather yourself, you know that breathability can be a big concern. You don’t want your horse to become overheated, so you’ll want to make sure to find options that emphasize breathability.
Plastic and Synthetic Options
If you are looking for something more affordable, plastic and synthetic horse boots can be a good alternative. Plastic horse boot outer shells are typically quite durable. Synthetic fibers, meanwhile, prevent heat from trapping between the plastic and your horse’s legs, making the best synthetic horse boots quite breathable.
When it comes to breathability, you can’t do much better than a modern mesh option. These are especially popular in bell boots. The last thing you want is for your horse’s hooves to become overheated and develop an inflammation or other serious condition as a result. Bell boots that make use of meshes do a great job of allowing airflow to pass between the fibers of the mesh and your horse’s legs and hooves, thereby keeping them cool and well-ventilated.
Lambskin and Neoprene Options
Finally, you’ll want to consider the material used in the lining. Traditionally, lambskin is the most common choice here. It is incredibly soft and can make the fit extremely comfortable for your horse. Newer models have taken to using neoprene padding, which can also be quite soft and durable.
Ultimately, the question of which materials are best for your horse’s boots will depend on a variety of factors, from your budget to the newness of the boots to your own preferences and those of your horse. Thankfully, the equestrian and market has come a long way over the past few decades, so whatever your horse boot material preferences may be, you’re sure to find an option that fits you and your horse to perfection.