How to Apply a Hoof Bandage

How to Apply a Hoof Bandage

How to Apply a Hoof Bandage

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Diaper (size 3) or several layers of sheet cotton cut into a square large enough to cover over the coronet band

  • Vetrap® or other similar bandage material (found at most any feed/tack store) Note: this material should always be used over a protective soft bandage because it can constrict and essentially cause a tourniquet.

  • Duct tape – Make a duct tape “placemat” by tearing approximately 8-10 inch strips and overlapping them vertically, then horizontally in at least 2-3 layers. This creates a durable, waterproof outer layer for your bandage. Make a cut down each of the four corners so you will be able to fold it around the foot.

  • Elastikon (3”)

  • “Sugardine” (simply betadine mixed with sugar), or MagnaPaste Poultice if treating a foot abscess.


  1. Start with a clean and dry foot and be sure you are working on a clean surface. Apply sugardine or Magnapaste to the bottom of the foot. 

  2. Wrap the hoof using a diaper or sheet cotton. Diapers are extremely convenient to use, provide padding and are absorbent. Unfold the diaper and place the fold at the toe of the hoof. Then use the adhesive tabs to hold it in place on the hoof. 

  3. It may be helpful to secure it lightly with Vetrap® (never wrapping the Vetrap® any higher than the diaper!). If you are using sheet cotton, you will have to use the Vetrap® to secure the cotton to the hoof (again, never higher than the wrap). 

  4. Next, place your duct tape “placemat” on the bottom of the foot. Wrap additional duct tape around the toe and hoof wall for additional security. Now you can let your horse stand on the foot. Ideally the diaper or cotton should cover the coronet band. NEVER apply duct tape or Vetrap® directly over the coronet band. 

  5. Finally, you can use Elastikon® around the top of the wrap at the pastern (this material is relatively safe to use slightly above the bandage to secure it to the hair (though don’t pull it tight like a tourniquet!) to prevent bedding and debris from getting down into the bandage.  Every horse wears a hoof bandage differently and depending on the thickness of your duct tape you may need to reinforce the toe or the bottom of the wrap so that your horse does not wear through the bottom of the wrap. The more he moves, the more it will wear through.

Protective “medicine boots” are another alternative to hoof bandages. However, you must be sure that you use a boot that fits your horse properly and that you check it very regularly to avoid pressure sores over the heel bulbs and coronet.

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