Pads and Endurance Horses

Q: I have been a farrier for 7 years. I have started doing endurance riding. My horse has very sensitive front feet. One of them is slightly upright. I usually put plastic pads on him for endurance rides because the footing is often very rocky and we ride pretty fast and hard.

My problem is that sand gets under the pad and gravitates to the toe area and eventually causes pressure. Also, small rocks have managed to work their way under the pads as well. I have used many different types of packing material and have had no luck preventing this from happening.

Any advice would be appreciated. Also, I’m interested in advice on types of pads as well. I’ve always used plastic for endurance because they hold up fairly well with the miles that I put on. Has anyone had success with a different type of pad for this type of riding?

— Merle

A:. I have had good success using Vettec’s Equi-Pak pour-in pad product. It adheres to the foot as well as the inside rim of the shoe. There is no problem with rocks, etc., causing a problem under the pad. It also does a great job of protecting the sole of the foot from bruising, etc. I have used this material on barrel horses very successfully.

You can also use this material or the CS version as packing under plastic pads. It will completely fill the void under the pad, making it impossible for rocks…

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