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“Sneakers For Horses”
Think about your own shoes and how extra padding and wider widths make your feet more comfortable, and it’s easy to understand why horses might prefer Sneakers performance and therapeutic horseshoes. They aren’t the only shoe with a pad, but they are unique.
    “We reversed the configuration,” explains Melinda Balint, co-owner of Equithotics Inc. that sells the patented Sneakers, invented by co-owner Kirk Adkins. “Instead of the pad between the hoof and shoe, it’s on the ground surface. With the nail heads seated into the aluminum bar shoe, the nail clinches and the shoe stays tight and secure. This allows for the pad material on the ground surface to absorb concussion and wear as the horse requires.”
    Farriers use regular shoeing tools and techniques. Sneakers are shaped by trimming or rasping the excess shoe material for a custom fit for each horse’s hoof.
    “The ultra-wide web bar shoe and pad combination provides plenty of heel support, protection and concussion absorption. The pad material wears like the horse likes to travel so there is even easier breakover available,” Balint adds.
    The material is also durable. Depending on the terrain and the way the horse travels, most horses usually can get several settings on a pair of shoes. Endurance horses have logged as many as 600 miles with a pair of Sneakers, while arena horses average about 9 months with resets about every six weeks.
    Depending on the size, Sneakers cost around $65/pair. They are available in sizes 0-5 in the front rounder toe profile pattern and sizes 1-4 in the hind more pointed toe profile.
    “We also have our newer draft horse shoe sizes. The California highway patrol horses will be wearing Sneakers in the Rose Bowl parade again this year,” Balint says. “Sneakers work well for carriage and patrol horses because they provide good traction on roads and asphalt.”
    Equithotics also sells other products. The $6 Sandals are a lightweight (less than 3 oz.) plastic boot that are duct taped on for emergencies when a horse loses a shoe or to protect a hoof being treated with medication.
    Besides ergonomic designs to provide comfort to horses, they offer products for human comfort. Adkins designed orthotic rasp handles in a variety of bright colors and makes hoof knives with orthotic wooden handles and special blades.
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Equithotics Inc., P.O. Box 163, Dixon, Calif. 95620 (ph 707 449-3570; www.equithotics.com; mail@equithotics.com).

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2019 - Volume #43, Issue #1