Mary and Cutter use Cavallo Hoof Boots from Horse and More, which Mary claims are "a great success". They've enabled Mary to transform Cutter from a shod horse to a barefoot horse on the advice of both Farrier and Vet.
In a barefoot phase of the Llanthony Welsh Championship Trec Competition, Mary and Cutter led the competition, Level 2, overnight, after the POR (Trec 2 day orienteering ride).On this occasion, Mary and Cutter started the POR (orienteering competition) barefoot, due to tarmac and likely grassy/muddy tracks. At the first checkpoint, they were obviously going into a forestry section over stony tracks. On go the Cavallo hoof Boots! As soon as they return to grassy mountain tracks, they nip down a sidetrack and whip off the boots and store them behind the saddle. They finish the last phase barefoot, where over a rocky descent, barefoot is king but in the knowledge that if the forestry tracks get too rough, it will only take seconds to put the boots back on and head for the finish!
"Cutter is so funny. If I'm going out of the yard onto tarmac or grass, I don't boot up and we hobble over the rough surface of the outer yard. The next day, booted up to go out on to a rougher surface, he hobbles out as usual and then gets a light bulb moment when he realises that it doesn't hurt today!"
Mary and Cutter had to use the boots with liners in the early days as Cutter had a touch of mud fever. They used the official gaiters or pastern wraps or special liners which Mary had made, as and when necessary.
But now Mary says Cutter "is acclimatised to the boots he seems really comfortable in boots alone. The only time he is not comfortable with them is on sloping grass surfaces and we may have struggled on our rocky descent but they are so easy to put on and off, that this is not a problem.
Well onward and upward! Level 1 Champs next time. Let's hope the rider can keep the errors to a minimum!"
Horse and More and Cavallo wish Mary and Cutter luck with their competing.