Annie The Destroyer

I have a problem that I have never dealt with before Annie. She has been pulling shoes like its her job. Not only does she pull the shoe but she annihilates her bell boots and often her heel in the process. I have spent more money on bell boots in the past 3 months than most horses use in double the time.

Previously I have used the Nunn Finer bell boots but they are kind of an example of you get what you pay for and have proven to be way too thin for Annie’s skills.

At Rolex I ended up purchasing Professional Choice bell boots (above) and within a month they looked like this (below). Annie has pulled 2 shoes in the past shoeing cycles. She had her feet done right before the show and then pulled a shoe while we were at the show this past weekend.I opted to purchase a back up pair of bell boots last weekend for the hose show so on Tuesday I was able to put those on Annie. These bell boots might have looked durable but less than 24hrs later they were ready to join the rest in the trash can…Now I am getting desperate. It is fairly impossible to get a horse ready to show when you can’t ride them because you’re always waiting for a new shoe to be tacked on! 

I took advantage of Mary’s breeches sale and ended up tacking on some additional bell boots for the reserves. In the past I had Professional Choice no turn bell boots for Houston. I honestly wasn’t a huge fan but apparently the boots can turn a lot if you don’t have the right size.

I also decided to add some quarter boots to the mix. I am really skeptical that this will work but I am open to trying anything. I appreciate that Annie tracks so well up but dear lord I would like to keep her shoes on for more than 2 weeks at a time. Do any of you have similar issues with your horses? Any tips or tricks? Favorite bell boots?

Last  but not least congrats to Karen from Patently Bay as she won the Annie’s Equine Elixir and Savannah treats contest!

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  1. I always liked the Beval pull on bell boots. My horse is barefoot, so I don’t have any advice other than that.

      1. What about the Thinline Bell boots. They have fleece lining and through Thinline have a 30 day guarantee. Eskadron also makes fleece lined bell boots. Not sure how much more durable they are and are definitely more $$, but may be worth looking into.

        I see Back on Track makes bell boots, but I’m not sure what type of material is around the top of them.

  2. Ugh, yeah…havent had this issue to this degree before. What a pain! I hope you figure out a good solution. Can she go barefoot that would save tons!

  3. Years ago, my gelding was awful on his shoes (or, in reality, farrier issues and a “dangerous horse” left his shoe cycle inconsistent) so he wore bell boots 24/7. I found that i had the most luck with the Italian Jumper bell boots in the gum color (only the gum color — the black ripped way too quickly):

    While the didn’t last forever, I did manage to get several months out of a pair (6+?) and could even use them with slight tears. I don’t know if they’re still as good as they were (horse has been barefoot since 2011), but they did hold up better than all of the others. They were a pain to put on though and not exactly cheap.

  4. Roger pulls shoes like it’s his job because he naturally tracks up so far, and also plays a lot in turnout, especially when we have rainy/muddy weather. I’ve had a lot of luck with those same Professionals Choice bell boots; so far, they’ve held up really well and are tough for Roger to completely dismantle. I’ve never tried the rubber bell boots on him because they all seem so flimsy, and the pull-on ones are a bitch to put on and take off. Hope the PC ones work better for you.

  5. I’ve never had this problem but one of the girls at our barn has a young TB who does the exact same thing. She finally broke down and purchased a set of the Dalmar bell boots and they’ve lasted months without a pulled shoe or any damage.

  6. A horse I had a while ago liked to rip his front shoes off with his hind feet from over-reach, and any farrier that worked on him would square his back toes to keep that from happening so often. It did help some. I also prefer the Italian/Beval jumper pull on bell boots, because I think the thicker bottom helps protect the heel & shoe better. I have a pair of Centaur knock-offs that work similarly. I have to rub Gold Bond powder on Eli’s pasterns and the inside of the boots to keep Eli from getting rubs, but he doesn’t wear them 24/7 so I don’t know how well the Gold Bond would hold up to that.

    Also, thank you for hosting such a great contest! I can’t wait to try Annie’s equine elixir and all the other goodies 🙂

    1. This. Basically. I also use the Centaur knock offs, which are SUPER thick at the bottom. I’d talk to your farrier, though. That kind of shoe pulling off might be due to an inferior breakover point on the front foot. Even if it’s not, your farrier should be able to come up with some options to help mitigate the issue.

  7. Riva lives in the thick rubber pull on’s – super hard to get on and off, but they last and work pretty well. In muddy weather, nothing works very well.

  8. I had a pair of random black pull ons last me TWO YEARS, which was amazing. No idea what they were–got them in a trade with my BO. Nothing has had staying power like that since then.

  9. I have this same damn problem with Hampton. I have the most success with the ProChoice ballistic no-turns (thankfully they don’t rub him), but also you could try two pairs of bell boots. Just put a larger size over the smaller size. Our shoe-pulling machines are a royal pain in the ass. Nothing but empathy here. argh

  10. Carlos also used to pull shoes a lot, changing how he was shod helped, limiting turn out as well. I would use the Davis on off bell boots for riding only and left bell boots off rest of the time. Worked for him, might not for her.

  11. I really like the KL Italia bell boots- they’re the only ones I use! They might rub Annie, though, so I’m not sure how useful they’ll be.

  12. Miles does this — changing how he was shod, limiting his turnout (no more overnight) and having him wear bells all the way around (I like the SmartPak brand) has all helped.

  13. My guy pulls shoes all the time (We even pulled one during our cool down stretchy trot work and he almost whacked his face on the ground), but in the summer he can’t wear bell boots because the skin underneath gets puffy and tender with all of the sweat and bathing. What has helped a lot is bringing his heels up a little and squaring off his toes a bit. Obviously everyone is different, but I would definitely at least chat with the farrier about any suggestions he may have. Sometimes hotshoeing helps the shoes stick better too if part of the problem is that the hoof wall isn’t strong, but when they’re just ripping them off by stepping on them, I’m not sure how much that helps.

  14. Yeesh! Annie really is a bell boot destroyer!

    Was going to suggest the KL pull on bell boots as well! But if Ms Redhead gets rubs than maybe not. I just got a pair for Spot, let see how easy they are to get on

  15. I have had the best luck with the Davis bell boots they hold up really well, are very difficult to rip and the velcro is extra sticky. They are certainly worth a try at around $20/pair. Good luck!

  16. If you can’t change anything about her shoeing to prevent pulling shoes, then I would bite the bullet, have her tapped for studs, and buy the Shoe Secures. I used to use them on a 4* horse we had whose feet were absolute crap and who would rip off his expensive imported glue on shoes that took like 6 hours to put on by the one guy who knew how to do it. Works a charm, and they even come in fun colors. You can remove them for riding/showing and they don’t rub.

  17. How have you been going with this? Would definitely talk to a farrier to see if there’s any corrective work that can be done to fix this issue or if they have any suggestions/solutions! Not a nice problem to have!