Last Updated on April 30, 2021
When spending hours on your feet around the stables or the ranch, you need excellent footwear, a task the needs the best boots for barn work. Durability, safety, warmth, and waterproofness all factor into the right kind of boots. However, lots of available options make choosing difficult; we are here to help!
Qualities The Best Boots For Barn Work Need
Standing on hard ground, walking through muck and mud is hard on your feet. Any old boot won’t hold up to barn work. To avoid sore, wet feet, you need a book designed for hard work.
The best boots are waterproof. Double-check this, as waterproof boots will not survive around the barn. No matter how hard you try, you can’t avoid water, or even worse horse muck touching your feet. If you need to wear your shoes all day, a waterproof pair is the only choice.
Ensure the material of the boots is not only waterproof but also all check that all seams have treatment to prevent water from getting in.
Good boots have cushioned insoles and supportive arches. With the right footwear, your feet won’t ache by the end of the day. It is tempting to wear sneakers, but even though they provide comfort, they do not protect your feet as well as boots.
Time Of Year and Climate
The time year and climate factor into what boots will work best for you. In the winter, especially if you live in a wet region, tall work boots are more practical. If it gets very cold, warm boots are essential.
The exterior sole of barn boots should have a thick rubber sole, with good grippy treads. The thick sole will cushion your feet and help the boots last longer. A good tread will help you avoid slipping.
Barn boots take a beating. They suffer through mud, dust, water, and horse manure. On top of that, the material is constantly flexing as you work. At a minimum, you want a pair of boots that will last you a year; longer is a bonus.
Working around the barn presents several hazards. Horses are large and unpredictable, no matter how quiet they behave. Getting stepped on not only hurts, but it can also break your foot or toes. In addition to horses, the tools, and machines you use in your daily barn work can cause an injury to your foot.
One rule to strictly adhere to is never to wear flip-flops at the barn. The injuries suffered by people from doing this are pretty gruesome. We don’t want to scare you, and if you really want to see evidence, a simple search online will show you.
Look for a boot that has a steel toe or at least an extra layer of protection in the toe area. Some boots don’t have either but do have very thick material that makes them acceptable. The material will also help protect the rest of your foot from rocks, rough ground, and any other hazards found in a countryside environment.
Caring For Barn Boots
Looking after your boots will prolong their life. Daily exposure to dirt will degrade the boot material. When you’re finished working for the day, rinse the boots off with a hose.
However, the type of boot will depend on how much of the boot you can rinse with water. Always spray off rubber soles, and boots made from rubber or neoprene. For leather boots, wipe off the dust and dirt daily.
Make sure to oil, polish, and leather according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Leaving dirt on leather boots especially will ruin them fairly quickly.
Some Of Our Favorite Barn Boots
Here are some of the best boots for barn work. Hopefully, it will help you narrow down the right ones for you!
The Original Muck Boot Company makes a wide range of work boots suitable for around the barn. For winter or wet weather, this model is perfect. The boots have a thick sole with rubber extending above the ankle area.
Thick, insulating neoprene finishes the upper part of the boot. The top of the boots reaches the mid-calf area. The calf area is wide, so the boots suit a variety of leg shapes.
- Excellent grippy exterior sole
- Easy to clean
- Durable construction
- Thick 5 millimeter neoprene
- Reinforced toe and heel
- They retain heat, so can get too hot in summer weather
- Lack good breathability
The Servus Comfort boot is an extremely popular men’s work boot with an affordable price. They have a thick, deep tread sole that provides great grip and extra cushioning for your feet. The boots reach the top of the wearer’s calves and are completely waterproof.
They are made from PVC polyblend and contain no seems, so there’s no chance of water seeping in. The cushioned insole provides comfort and support. The steel toe adds that extra bit of safety.
- 100 percent waterproof
- Removable insole
- Steel toe
- Material is formulated to resist damage from manure, dirt, and fertilizer
- Great price
- Can run big
- Some might find the calf too wide
Ariat and boots go hand in hand. The brand makes a huge variety of boots for equestrians from horse riding boots to work boots. The Ariat Terrain Pull-On Boots have a western-style, similar to a cowboy boot.
Even though these are great work boots, they also look good with a pair of jeans for a casual look off the farm. This boot comes in a rich brown and is made from genuine leather with a suede finish. They incorporate ATS technology which provides excellent comfort and support, regardless of the terrain.
The boots reach a mid-calf height and have a flexible rubber sole.
- Good foot grip
- The leather means these boots require extra care
- Only available in one color
- Can run small
The Bogs Women’s Class High No Handle boot is similar in design to Muck Boots. This model is the best for winter wear. They are tall, covering the calf, insulated, and waterproof. The exterior sole is rubber, and the upper area is a type of neoprene called Neo-Tech™.
The model featured here is for women, but Bogs also makes a version for men and children.
- 100 percent waterproof
- The footwell has an interior four-way stretch bootie.
- Warm to minus 40-degree Farenheight
- Moisture-wicking lining
- Easy to clean and care for
- The sole tread is a little shallow which can make them a little slippery
- To hot for summer wear
- Can run small
Even though this is technically a hiking boot, the Ariat Terrain is a fantastic option for barn work. These sturdy boots provide comfort and protection and are great for summer wear. They are ankle-high and use ATS technology for extra comfort.
The boots even take horse riding into consideration, making them safe to put in stirrups. We love the rugged, yet stylish look. They are made from full-grain, oil leather. The interior sole has added shock absorption, so you know you’ll avoid achy feet.
The bottom of the foot incorporates Ariats Duratread sole. Even with the rugged look, these boots are lightweight. Finally, don’t worry, these boots aren’t just for women, Ariat offers a model for men as well.
- Good for summer barn work
- Great foot support
- Run slightly narrow in fit
- Laces could potentially lead to leaks
- Made from leather which requires more care
Each of these barn work boots has great qualities, so choosing our favorite is tough. But if we have to make a choice the Ariat Terrain boots come out on top. These boots provide good protection without losing comfort and style.
However, for the winter, the winner is the Bogs Classic boot. There is nothing worse than cold, wet feet. Once your feet get cold, it is impossible to stay warm, and it just makes you miserable.
Our best boots for barn work round-up gives you a small taster of the different footwear available. We hope it helps you narrow down your search. Here are a few final tips to aid your search for the perfect barn boot.
All boots need a chance to dry. If your budget allows, it’s a good idea to have more than one pair of work boots. To dry out your boots, stuff them with newspaper and place them in a warm, dry room. However, never place them next to the radiator or open fire.
Care for your boots as per the instruction that comes with them to get the maximum life out of them. Finally, sometimes it is a good idea to try on a few different brands or models to know what best suits your feet.
We would love to know what your favorite barn work boot brand is. Let us know in the comments below.
Michael Dehaan is a passionate horse owner, horse rider, and lover of all things equine. He has been around horses since he was a child, and has grown to become an expert in the field. He has owned and ridden a variety of horses of different breeds, and has trained many to compete in shows and competitions. He is an experienced horseman, having worked with and competed many horses, including his own. He is an active member of the equestrian community, participating in events and teaching riding lessons.