Saturday, May 14, 2011

Good news that's not so good, but still good.

So this happened Thursday - Blogger on the fritz has prevented me from posting.

Basically, we pulled Amber out and she was still doing the sameee thing.

She's not 'lame'. She's just unsound. I feel there is a difference. She threw a couple of "airs above the ground" so to speak when I got after her a couple of times.

I did ride Pumpkin. Very, very different from Amber. Very strong. Heavy in my hands. But nice and I do like her - she's just not my Amber.

Anyway, Bob looked at Amber and basically we decided that it's more than likely the lack of toe and high heel in the back, and also that she carries herself incorrectly. Her nose is in the air and she's crunching her back. He took some split western reins and ran them between her legs and tied them over her back and basically forced her into a more correct angle of headset. Not to the degree of her head being tied to her chest - she had plenty of room. But it has obviously been done to her before because it didn't take her long to willingly lower her head and move correctly. And she moved 1000x better when she did.

The prognosis? I've got to get her head down more, and she is also getting shoes in a couple more trims.

I'm really hesitant about trying to force her head to be down admittedly. I feel it should be something she learns gently and gradually. I know I could easily tie her head down and I doubt she'd get nasty about it, she knows what's up when it happens, but I just don't like the fact that she's not learning to do it willingly from my aids. Because that leaves the door open that she may or may not pick up a habit and muscle memory from it. I refuse to rely on gadgets to get her using her topline for the rest of our lives!


  1. Sometimes the gadgets can give the horse the right idea..but I do understand your hesitation.

    Could be your girl is going to be one of those horses that need shoes. My Tucker is definitely one. He is back in four shoes now. I've tried barefoot twice and both times he ended up chronically lame. Not worth taking a chance.

  2. If this was my horse, I'd be thinking that the lameness/off-ness has gone on long enough to want a vet's input.

  3. i agree with terry. Also, gadgets do not MAKE a correct frame. Only a fake one. With time and training do you get correct connection. Sure her head will be down, but her butt and hind legs will be strung out and she wont be using her back at all. It takes inside leg to outside rein and impulsion to create a topline. Took my horse six years and not once was i tempted to use a gadget. The result is a horse that is elastic and willing rather than a horse who can only trot or canter versus extended trot, collected, etc. and is willing to be soft in the bridle, not cranked in. Sorry for the lecture I just HATE HATE HATE gadgets! I've seen too many horses ruined with them...don't want your mare to be one, thats all :)

  4. Right now...I'm really not sure I want to blow $300 to go to the vet for something that someone I know is experienced and I trust is telling me from his point of view, I'd be wasting the money for them to tell me to just put her on rest as we are already doing at this point...not to say I couldn't/wouldn't if I thought it was going to come down to it.

    This lameness/off-ness bout has only gone on for about a week and a half. The last time we had trouble was the heel bruise, and that was a totally different case. The last time we had the problem similar to this was back to Goldsboro, where it happened around trimming time...which is weird that it did so again now.

    Basically what I'm being told is, she's lame because she's carrying her head too high. And she's crunching her back up and throwing too much weight on the hind end. That makes sense.