Are Spurs Illegal to Wear in Public? What’s Law? (Read This First)

By Zunnun Ahmed •  Updated: 08/07/22 •  5 min read

There are different onions when it comes to wearing spurs in public. Some people argue that it is okay while others feel you should not do it. If you live or work on a ranch, you have probably seen cowboys always have spurs on their boots even when in public.

So, are spur illegal to wear in public? Will you draw attention if you have your spurs in town? Well, this depends on where you live and the laws of your state. For instance, if you live in a place where ranchers wear work gear in town, you will not draw much attention with your spurs on.

In other places, wearing spurs in public can attract attention. I will help you understand whether it is illegal to put spurs in public and what the law says.

Are spurs illegal to wear in public? what’s the law?

There is no single law that controls wearing spurs in public. Different states have different laws regarding the legality of wearing spurs in public. For instance, in Arizona, there is a law that restricts cowboys from wearing spurs in hotels.

Spurs are also allowed in public during showing classes.  Advanced primary riders can now wear spurs in showing competitions and pure dressage.

People also wear spurs in public during special events like western-themed weddings. This serves as a great opportunity to show off your cowboy boots and spurs during the event without drawing negative opinions. If you choose to wear spurs in public, these tips will help you:

What are some reasons for wearing horse spurs?

What are some reasons for wearing horse spurs?

Horse spurs are not ideal for beginners because they tend to overuse them or they press too hard which spurs can hurt the horse. Beginners also lack proper control when using spurs.

Therefore, you should only use horse spurs if you are experienced.

Horse riders use spurs to communicate with the horse if the horse doesn’t respond to the words. They are useful during emergencies because they alert the horse to act fast.

Additionally, they come in handy when it is loud, and you can’t talk. Other reasons for using horse spurs include:

How to choose the right horse spurs?

If you choose to wear spurs, you should buy the best spurs with a nice design. Several things should guide you in picking quality horse-riding spurs. They include the following:

Intended use

How do you intend to use the spurs? This is the first thing you should take into consideration become you buy spurs. Spurs should help in communication with your horse, and using them incorrectly can harm the horse.

Related: Discover the 9 surprising home remedies to help you care for your horse’s cracked hooves and keep them healthy. Learn more now!

Types of spurs

There are different types of spurs you can choose depending on their purpose. The most common types of spurs include dummy spurs, round end, knob end, Prince of Wales, barrel-racing spur, jingle bob, mounted, Waterford, swan neck, and rowelled spurs.

Proper fitting

It is good to ensure that the spurs fit you perfectly. They should not be too tight and neither should they be too loose. The best spurs fit snuggly and they rest on your boot heels comfortably.

Riding style

You should also consider the riding style to get ideal spurs.  For instance, barrel racing spurs might not be ideal if your riding style involves show jumping.

Shank length

If you are in disciplines like dressage, longer shank length is recommended. Other disciplines call for shorter lengths.

Related: Find out if it’s legal to use horses for transportation. Get the facts you need to know, including information on equine laws and regulations.


The issue of wearing spurs in public is highly debated and people have different thoughts. In some places, wearing spurs in public doesn’t attract attention and in other places, people might view it as a showoff.

Wearing spurs in public is a personal preference if you are comfortable with that.

These days they have become a fashion statement as cowboys wear them as fashion accessories. If wearing spurs in public makes you happy, then you don’t have to worry about what people will say about you.

It is also good to know the laws in your state and whether they allow wearing spurs in public to avoid finding yourself in problems. If you choose to wear spurs, ensure you are experienced and know how to use them correctly.

Zunnun Ahmed

We are a group of horse enthusiasts. We want to provide information and tips to help others learn more about horses, how to care for them, and how to enjoy them.

Keep Reading