All horse lovers know that a horse’s legs are its life. When they are damaged, the result could mean putting the animal down. We all know that this is saddening and now there is an invention that may make this a thing of the past.
Utah inventor and rodeo competitor David Wadman, the CEO of Zebra Equine Technologies, has developed a horse boot to reduce the hot temperatures on horse’s legs that tend to cause tendon damage.
Wadman was an amateur rodeo competitor who started in high school in the late ’90s. And nearly two decades later he decided to turn his love for horses into a profession by making the investment in several horses.
“At the time, I noticed swelling on my horses’ legs,” Wadman said. “I was using the top-of-the-line boots at the time for horses, (but) still my horses’ tendons kept swelling up. Because I had invested so much money, I felt it was a necessity to do more research.”
At an upfront cost to purchase a horse ranging from $8,000 to as much as $80,000 depending on the type of animal, it is quite an investment that has to be protected, Wadman said.
Wadman discovered that the boots he was using were actually harnessing heat around the horses’ legs during competitions, especially in the summer, and he soon realized he needed to find another medium to protect his horses’ legs during competition.
He noted that he searched and could not find anything that would help. That there were only rehabilitation boots for after the competition to cool the horse’s tendons down. He came to the conclusion that the horse boots that people were using during competitions actually cooked the horse’s lower legs.
After experimenting with different types of materials to reduce heat, Wadman struck upon the idea for his invention.
What is the Z Boot
Wadman’s high-tech Z Boot tracks the temperature of the horse’s legs and alerts via a smartphone app when the temp is becoming dangerously high. How about that for technology? This can save a lot of trouble for horses. Wadman said it just seemed to make sense to utilize the technology most riders already had at their fingertips to make them better horse owners.
The Z Boot uses Bluetooth temperature sensor reports for real-time monitoring. It employs thermodynamic materials to pull heat from the horse’s legs and is made from high-quality, flexible multi-impact protection technology that removes 90% of impact damage. The boot is also perforated to allow for ventilation and has strong grip closures, making the boots long-lasting and easy to secure.
“Once the boot sends the alert that it has absorbed as much of the heat as it can, that is when it should be removed and put in a cooler environment to recharge them or dunk them into a bucket of water,” Wadman said. “They will recharge them in about three minutes. Once they are rung out, they can be put back on the horse for up to two more hours of heat absorption.”
According to equine research, when a horse’s collagen cells, which are the main structural proteins in their tendons, are subjected to temperatures of more than 110 degrees, the cells begin to die. Although damage caused depends on the horse, the result can be bowed tendons, lameness, pain and arthritis. In extreme cases, the horse may have to be put down.
Although Wadman was an experienced rider, he said he had no idea the damage typical boots were causing.
“They put blinders on racehorses, and I came to find out that I had blinders on as well,” he said. “I had no idea about the potential problems and that my horses were most likely working through the pain. I knew I couldn’t take the chance with other boots to keep cooking my horses’ legs.”
What a great invention. Hats off to David Wadman. This should very well save the lives of a lot of horses. Now is the time to look into the best saddle store online has the best arrangement of equine blankets, English saddles, Western saddles, English saddle pads, Western saddle pads, as well as feeding and watering supplies on RHMEquine.com. If you are shopping on this website, you are already halfway there.