It is the season. Grass, grass, grass…
In case any of you are suffering laminitis with your horse (hope not), these little dittys should come in handy.
I have the ice packs in my freezer – ready. I also have a duct tape bootie (flat) taped to a wall in the tack room – just in case. Because when I’m stressed, I don’t make them well…
TRICKS I HAVE LEARNED FROM MY VET
The below duct tape booties and ice pack wraps are gems during laminitis season.
You may already know these tricks… but I didn’t, so maybe there are some of you out there who make lousy booties and never have the correct size ice pack when you need it – just like me!
DUCT TAPE BOOTIES
When wrapping hooves, I tended to use duct tape as a wrapping tape. First you put on the vet wrap and then you follow those same circular motions when adding the duct tape over the top.
And, if you are like me, you will have leakage, the booties deteriorate quickly and you find shavings INSIDE when you thought the booties were sealed tight.
Well, never fear. I have watched a Master duct-tape-bootie maker at work — My vet, Dr. Mario.
MAKING A PERFECT BOOTIE
It all started because we were wrapping Norma’s feet the other day. In preparation, I had made a duct tape bootie according to how I thought Dr. Mario made them. Feeling smug, I handed him my creation.
He looked at it, eyeing it curiously. After about two ‘monkey with an odd object’ perplexed looks, he walked into the tack room and started to make his own.
I decided to not be hurt and instead to study what he was doing… I made mental notes of his commentary as he whipped out a new bootie.
MY VERSION FOR YOU… Please know that I made the booties in these photos, not Mario.
I wasn’t quick enough to get my camera while he was in genius mode. So, I’m recreating this from my mental notes.
1) Don’t try to make the bootie with the sticky side up. Place it sticky side down onto a surface — any surface. (He said he does this on his truck or bumper often.) Figure you need a square about double the hoof size on all four sides. Lay out your strips vertically. If you need a really strong bootie, you can also add strips horizontally at this phase.
2) Put on diagonal strips
3) Make a frame – all four sides.
4) Cut the sides so they are even
5) Snip diagonally on all four corners (this give you your overlap tabs)
6) Voila! You can apply this on the sole, then paste the sides and then the front and back – or do it anyway you want. Since the corners are cut, you will be able to overlap it any way that is easiest for you. It goes on fast and easy! You can do it with the hoof up, or if the horse is really sore, just pick the hoof up long enough to cover the sole and then let him put his foot down while you adhere all four sides.
7) Add a strip of duct tape around the top to secure all the tabs – or not. That’s it! The booties pictured below on Norma were 4 days old!
QUICK ICE PACKS
This is so easy, I laughed when I saw Mario do this.
Basically, all you have to remember is to get some surgical LOOOOOONG gloves (or save bread loaf bags – those work, too). The kind vets use for rectal exams. Keep those in your trailer or in your barn or your tack box. If you have any way to freeze something, you are golden.
I keep some of these ice packs pre-made in my freezer. So if anyone is hurt while at home, I can run and get a pre-made frozen ice-pack!
ICE PACK sized for a hoof.
These are great when you need to ice a hoof or hose it down with cold water. You can just apply one or two of these and walk away!
1) Take one surgical glove and tie off the hand part with the fingers.
2) Open the other end and add a bit of water. You only want to add enough to make an oblong ball. Tie that ball of water off loosely. Allow the water to slosh a bit so it isn’t tight. Make sure your tie-off knot is long. Or, make a few knots. You want some space between ice packs.
3) Make sure to add a few knots in the middle so that you have space between ice packs. If they are too close together, they won’t wrap around the ankle well.
4) Make the shapes only as large as you need. Too big and it won’t wrap well. Practice a few times to get the hang of it.
5) Put this in the freezer
6) After it freezes, you have two ice packs tied together and all you have to do is wrap it around the area and tie it off!
Cheap, Modifiable and Easy!
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