I wrote last month about needing to solve my fly problem. It’s too late to release fly predators and fly spray is only lasting 24-48 hours. Plus a part of me dies every time I coat my horse in chemicals while doing my best not to breathe it all in.
My first thought was to purchase fly sheets, but the high heat and humidity around here made me hesitate. I don’t need my horses to get heat stroke. Then I stumbled upon the Shoofly Leggings and noticed a local friend was using them. She had nothing but good things to say, so I bit the bullet and ordered two sets.
I found mine at Jeffers for $49 a set which includes four leggings. I ordered a medium for Gem (15h, 950lbs) and a large for Pete (16h, 1200 lbs). The website gives recommendations based on horse size and also provides a size chart with exact measurements for those more motivated than I am.
The blue large was in stock and arrived about 5 days later. The orange mediums were on back order and ended up arriving the day after the other set, so not so bad. I got free shipping by adding in a lovely black dressage pad ($18 which was more than shipping would have been, but shhh…wife math) with cool max lining that I’ve been wanting.
So what are they?
Shoofly Leggings are PVC mesh, loose fitting fly boots. They have Velcro to attach along the entire vertical edge and fleece lining the bottom. They are meant to be open at the top to allow air flow, freedom of movement and prevent rubs. They have no chemicals in them.
They ended up fitting perfectly with plenty of room for error too. Our horses are out 24/7 and they wore them for the last two weeks straight with a break for riding only. During that time they rolled, galloped around like idiots, stood in the pouring rain and played in puddles.
Not a single legging came off or loose the entire time and when we took them off, while they were filthy dirty and the white fleece was brown instead, they didn’t have a single tear or rip. The Velcro was just as sticky coated in mud as it was when brand new.
We will see what shape they are in after the entire season, but they stood up to nearly everything possible in the first few weeks of wear and still looked brand new after a hose down.
As for the horses, they had no rubs whatsoever.
Do they work?
It appears so even if I did break my horses in the process. From the moment they went on, the stomping ceased entirely. Of course these do nothing for flies on their body or head, but the non stop stomping that was occurring even with fly spray finally let up. I was impressed.
Of course! The biggest and really only thing I don’t like is the fleece on the bottom. White anything is just not a good idea around horses and they quickly became brown. I don’t care what they look like as long as they function, but a color other than white would be better.
In addition, the fleece caked in the mud and rain and became hard and rigid instead of the soft and pliable material you would want around the horse flesh. It came clean with the hose, but who wants to hose them off after every rain storm that blows through? If they changed it to a different material all together, it would be perfect.
I’d recommend them to anyone having to fight the stomping of their horse. They are easy to put on and take off with just one strip of Velcro and have held up in the short term perfectly. Shop around to find them. Jeffers was the lowest price I could find when I was shopping.