Another Idea on a Forehand Heavy Horse?

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Another Idea on a Forehand Heavy Horse?

This is a discussion on Another Idea on a Forehand Heavy Horse? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Horse on the forehand and sore
  • Horse heavy on forehand bit

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  • 1 Post By PunksTank
  • 2 Post By verona1016

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    10-11-2012, 11:45 PM
Another Idea on a Forehand Heavy Horse?

As many of you probably know, my horse, Rusty, tends to move on the forehand. He leans on the bit, especially at the canter. Even when he's been in better shape, the problem hasn't gotten better.

Well, we took Rusty to the vet today along with my other horse to see if he needed to get his teeth floated. I mentioned this problem to my vet, and he did a hock flexion test. Rusty has a 1 to a 1.5 on the flexion lameness scale (if that's what it's called lol) in his right hock.

Could this be what is causing Rusty to be so heavy? He hates backing out of trailers, picking up his right lead, and does not like to go downhill - he would rather go fast. He does stumble occasionally too, and he motorboats around corners.

The vet said that it is not advanced enough for hock injections, and I agree because that's super expensive anyway. He recommended Buting Rusty and seeing how that goes.

Is Bute legal in competition?

What supplements have worked for you in this situation? I have heard a lot of good things about SmartPaks, so I was wondering what people have used and liked in this particular situation. The vet recommended Cosequin, which I am willing to give a try. But I also thought SmartPaks.

What is your take on it?
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    10-11-2012, 11:51 PM
I don't know about whether or not Bute would be legal, it'd be a great way to try and see if he's better when he feels better, but I wouldn't use it regularly. How old is this horse?
I wouldn't bother with injections yet either, that's a bit extreme and needs constant upkeep.

I personally use MSM as maintenance for ALL my horses it's fantastic for joints and all soft tissue. I see remarkable differences at the old, injured and arthritic horses at the rescue on it as well. Cosequin is a good choice too. MSM and Glucosamine are my favorite options (I use it for my own sore knees too!)
EvilHorseOfDoom likes this.
    10-11-2012, 11:55 PM
He's only 11 - not old at all. And for the amount I actually use him, hock injections would be silly. He is just so super heavy though and it really hasn't gotten better. Would supplements ease any pain or whatever he's dealing with?
    10-12-2012, 12:18 AM
Well absolutely, but it depends if it's swelling, arthritis or an old injury with scar tissue build up that's causing the stiffness. That would affect which supplement you'll want to use. MSM is a great overall supplement that a horse will never get old on a horse, you can use the same amount their whole life. I do for all my horses. It helps lubricate joints and helps with all soft tissue, cartilege, hair and eyes. Glucosamine is also great for lubricating joints, but your boy may have something different. Does he have a hitch? Is there any swelling or scar tissue? Perhaps just doing some stretching will help? Have a professional teach you how
To stretch his hind legs to help widen his range of motion. It's hard to tell over the internet sorry xD and I'm not a vet.
Sorry I wish I could be more helpful
    10-12-2012, 10:32 AM
Rusty doesn't have a hitch, no. He's just heavy at the trot sometimes and definitely at the canter. Way heavy. Sometimes like pull you out of the saddle heavy. So I thought maybe supplements would help that a little bit.
    10-12-2012, 02:40 PM
I use MSM for my horse as a preventative. It's very affordable (ends up being about $.13/day for the 10g that I give him). However, if he were already showing any signs of arthritis or similar I would probably research something stronger to use. My vet uses Cosequin ASU for her horses, which is spendy (~$2/day) but I've heard good things about its effectiveness.
EvilHorseOfDoom and PunksTank like this.
    10-12-2012, 03:41 PM
Originally Posted by Corazon Lock    
Rusty doesn't have a hitch, no. He's just heavy at the trot sometimes and definitely at the canter. Way heavy. Sometimes like pull you out of the saddle heavy. So I thought maybe supplements would help that a little bit.
But what are his hind legs doing? Are they stiff? Does he have difficulty picking them up all the way? Is there any swelling or scar tissue? Is there arthritis? Or is he just lazy? Depending on that would matter which supplement you'd like to use. MSM is fantastic all round supplement and won't hurt, but it may not be the thing he needs.
    10-12-2012, 07:09 PM
Maybe you could ask your vet if a supplement would help?

My 5yr gelding (who is VERY heavy on the forehand) was just diagnosed with 2.5 out of 5 hock arthritis in both his hocks. He gets a joint supplement and injections, if your looking for a joint supplement AniMed AniFlex GL - this is what I use. I love it and it has done wonders for my boy. The 5lb lasts 160-180 days (which I think is a great deal)
    10-13-2012, 10:40 PM
Hi guys,
I took Rusty on the trails today and here's what I noticed:
1. He has one walk pace. He does not move out at the walk. He's very slow and cannot keep up with my little Arab.
2. Going up hills, Rusty was okay, though he tended to want to trot.
3. Downhill, Rusty would stop, go slow, try to move right, and stumble a little bit. He always has refused to go downhill.
4. Rusty always moves from one side to another - it's like he can't walk straight sometimes when we get to hard road or rocks.
5. My friend noticed that he drags his hind feet instead of picking them up. And she hasn't been around horses much.

Rusty does have scar tissue on the right hind (the one with some lameness) on the front of his leg, but not anywhere near his hock, which is where the lameness was diagnosed. It's from an old injury that he had way before I bought him.

The vet said he just had a little soreness in his right hock, said nothing about arthritis. We'e always thought Rusty was lazy, but maybe it is because he's in pain?

Does this help? I will look up the AniMed stuff. I just want my boy to be a safe trail horse and to start using himself properly.

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