Friday, September 06, 2013

Goof-proof Hoofcare: “StayOns” Instant Hoof Poultice Wraps Simplify the Way You Wrap a Foot

This article is sponsored by Hamilton Biovet.

Here’s a product that is worth its weight in baby diapers.

If there was ever a contest that farriers, vet techs and veterinarians should run, it would be to see who has the fastest two hands in the world for making a duct tape bootie to attach over a hoof wrapped in a disposable baby diaper.

Hamilton Biovets Stayon Hoof Poultice Pad
How many times have you wrapped a hoof in duct tape, only to have the horse walk right out of it as he stepped off the mats? It happens, even to the pros. Now you can use StayOns prepared quilted “instant poultice” wraps, available in multiple formulas from Hamilton Biovet in Massachusetts.
Some day, that may sound like an absurd idea, but we all know that there are people out there today who have perfected foot wrapping to an artform. We also know that there are people out there who get more poultice on themselves than on the hoof.

Every tack room in America seems to have some baby diapers stuffed in a cabinet, and they’re not for babies. We all have rolls of duct tape stashed around our barns, horse trailers and cars.

Poulticing is a messy job, but there’s always been a bit of a universal acceptance that foot wrapping was a skill that must be mastered.

But Hamilton Biovet launched a new product to the farrier market this summer that may take the “dread” out of “dreaded hoof abscess”. The product, called “StayOns”, is a quilted hoof wrap that contains “instant poultice”; you wet it, lay it over the hoof, and keep it on with a clever little foldable bootie.

That’s it: no duct tape, no diapers, no struggling, no mess, no cleanup chores. And it stays on because, unlike a diaper, it really is shaped to the horse’s foot. And the poultice mixture is pre-measured and pre-loaded; you just have to wet it and secure it over the hoof and secure it with a boot to hold it in place.

So just when you think there is nothing new under the sun, here’s a good old-fashioned clay and Epsom salt poultice. Or a bran and Epsom salt poultice. Or a plain Epsom salt poultice. Take your pick; the quilted booties come in three recipes.

The quilted pouches cover the enter foot, including the heel bulbs, where so many abscesses like to erupt, and all the way to the hairline, the other favorite eruption spot.

The best part of the StayOns may be when you take them off. There’s much less mess to clean! You can just hose it off.

Horse poultice residue
There’s no question that traditional poulticing is a work-intensive endeavor, especially when it comes to the legs of sport and racehorses. You can make a mess twice, since the next morning, there’s a lot of post-poultice cleanup to be done, as well. (©Fran Jurga photo)
One of the things I especially like about this method of poulticing the foot is that the horse has to stand around for a shorter amount of time and that he has his feet handled for a much shorter time.

This is efficient time use for the groom or owner, but it is even better for the horse, especially if there’s a problem in more than one foot, such as road founder after a horse has gotten loose or stinging soles at the tracks.

Wrapping a horse’s foot is tough; wrapping a horse’s lifted foot when the weightbearing foot is painful is even tougher.

Many horse owners can go years between an abscess, puncture wound or foot problem that requires poulticing. They may forget how to do it, or not remember how much poultice to pack in the foot. Stayons take the guesswork out of the equation, since the poultice is pre-measured. They can see the poultice in the transparent quilts.

horse hoof abscess treatment
Everyone has a signature way of wrapping a foot up with duct tape. But would anyone be sorry to learn a new and cleaner way to do it? (© Fran Jurga photo)
There are hundreds of videos on YouTube that will show you how to soak and/or poultice a horse’s foot or leg. It’s an artform that we take for granted. Each groom or owner has his or her own way of doing it, and when they get good at it, they want to share how they figured it out.

The heyday of foot wrapping may have passed as people discover products that make it not just easier for caretakers, but safer for horses. A goof-proof product like StayOns insures that a horse’s foot gets treated and stays treated, until you take it off.

poultice horse hoof
The StayOns hoof poultice wraps allow users to poultice the entire foot and heel bulbs as well as the bottom of the foot. The mess of the poultice stays in the moist quilted sacks. (Hamliton BioVet photo)
Reminders about hoof poulticing:

  • Horse owners should always ask a veterinarian for advice before poulticing a foot for a condition that includes broken or irritated skin.
  • A foot poultice may not be advised for some foot infections.
  • Seek the advice of a veterinarian before applying poultice--or any medicated products--to young horses and pregnant or lactating mares.
  • Never apply poultice to inflamed or irritated heel bulbs.
  • Keep poultice stored in a safe, dry place that is out of the reach of dogs, cats and children.
About STAYONS and Hamilton Biovet: This product is made by the Better Bandage Company. Hamilton Biovet is the prime vendor for horse and farm owners, with exclusive rights in the farrier and farrier supply market in the USA. The poultice products may be ordered online from the Hamilton Biovet website. The cost is $13.99 for each pack of two wraps plus shipping. The coordinated fold-up booties are $14.99 each plus shipping. (These costs are current for September 1, 2013 and are subject to change without notice.) Check out the quilted leg poultice wraps, too! Email the company for more details.  "Like" Hamilton Biovet's Facebook page, too.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Hoof Blog (Hoofcare Publishing) received compensation for placement of this post. Hoofcare Publishing has no material connection to the brands, products, or services mentioned, other than products and services of Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.