So, today an equine chiropractor came out to assess my mare. While she was poking and prodding, she made a comment about my mare's neck being cresty. Now I put a picture of Frida up in the critique section. She is certainly not overweight, and is very much in shape. This is the first comment I have heard in regards to this. Now, I know cresty necks aren't just caused by solely weight issues, but that they can also be metabolic, or prevalent in certain breeds. Frida is an ArabX. I was just wondering if anybody could have any specific ideas as to the type of metabolic issue I might be looking at. Also, I don't know if you can see well enough, but she has slightly swollen lymph nodes on each side f her neck, behind her jowl. Really interested in hearing your responses as to the possible etiology of this as well. Thanks!
When I see an overweight horse with a cresty neck I immediately think either insulin resistent or Cushings disease, those are the metabolic issues you'd be looking at. Dream is a great example for it and needs to be tested. However, your horse not being overweight makes me think it's just how her neck is, it's part of her conformation that can't be changed. I don't see anything that makes me think "OMG metabolic problems!!!" if you didn't post this, I wouldn't even think anything of it :)
Looking at her picture, it just looks like that is how she was built. She's not overweight, is not an obvious "wow, look at that crest", and some of it is muscling. If you think about it, stallions who end up getting a lot of muscling just from being a stallion, has a big crested neck, its nothing bad, its just the extra muscle they develop in their neck. She is a cute looking horse, and I wouldn't worry too much about it, unless it becomes very obvious, or she starts showing signs of other health issues. As for the swollen lymph nodes, if they don't get any bigger, and she doesn't end up getting a running nose, or other symptoms of being sick, then I wouldn't worry about that either. Again, it could just be the way she is, or maybe her immune system has just kicked into gear over something, so you are noticing it, but it isn't really an issue. Just keep an eye on it, and make sure that it doesn't get any bigger or anything.
I have no idea what that chiro was seeing. She must be used to emaciated horses...
Your mare is fine. If you have concerns about her lymph nodes, call a vet. Some horses can get some swelling there in the spring just from some mild allergens. It is usually not a big deal. If it is accompanied with foul smelling and/or strange coloured nasal discharge, then I would be worried.