My 8yr old mare Sophie hasnt been herself this past week. She has been getting ridden more here lately, although its not hard rides at all. She was being ridden 3 or 4x a week with a lot of trotting to build stamina and work on some training problems with her. Last week and a half she's been ridden like 5 or 6x a week but most of those rides and are fairly easy, last about an hour but have A LOT of breaks in them, trot for 10 minutes then walk for 5 then canter for a few laps then walk for another 5 minutes or so etc. So it hasnt been hard work, she hasnt been breathing hard at any point in the ride and she's only broken a sweat at the girth. Well for the past week she just hasnt been herself. She's usually very spunky, quick, wants to work and has animated movement. Lately she's been sluggish, seems to drag her feet a little and hangs her head down a lot. She likes to stretch down but still stays animated and has a lot of movement to her, now its like her heads hanging there and it takes so much to pick up her feet to move. I thought maybe she was a little on the bored side so I decided to trailer her out on a trail ride with a group of other horses. She is usually fighting for lead spot, but throughout most of the trail she was lagging in the back. She LOVES to race horses, and we spent some time cantering and trotting but she was content to hang in the pack, and I even had to really squeeze her into the canter when everyone else was already cantering. I thought shed perk up with the change in training and all and there were moments where she was herself and fighting for the front spot but it was very little. I was thinking maybe she just needs a break. Ill give her today off and go out tomorrow and longe her and see if she feels any better, if not ill give her off until this weekend. I havent noticed a change of any other sort with her, she had a runny nose one evening when I went out to feed but that was the only time I noticed it. Her appetite is just as healthy as usual
, she's been licking her mineral block and drinking water, every time I go out she's grazing, I've felt her all over and she doesnt have heat in any joints or anywhere else. She's dropped some weight, but then again she was fat and is now working more and it hasnt been a significant amount so im not worried about that. I noticed a bulge behind her shoulder blade, I figure its a fat bulge from the weight she gained while I was out with an injury and will go away as she gets back into work and is exercised more so I don't think that's a worry either. I upped her grain a little bit, she was only getting about 1/4 a scoop and I upped it over the course of the week to 1/2 since she's working more. Its the same grain she's been on for months and months now, but in the past two days I've been slowly mixing in a new grain. Same brand just going from pleasure to competition grain since shell be getting ridden so much more now. And again that just started the past two or three days, so she was acting odd before then. She was only getting grain the days I rode, so like 3x a week but now that she's ridden more days she's getting grain more days but I don't think its enough to cause a problem?!?!?! The only thing I can think of that has possibly changed at all is that she was wormed on Wednesday (but again was a little odd a day or two before then). I change the wormer each time, and I've never had her act differently after being wormed so I don't know if that's it or not but I seriously can't think of a thing that's changed other than that and exercise. A friend mentioned that maybe with the winter coats coming in she's getting over heated but again she hasnt been sweating and she hasnt felt hot to the touch. Any ideas? Should I wait a few days or go ahead and have the vet out to check her? Anything I should look for to get a better idea? Maybe she was just having an off day and then with the wormer and continued exercise and slight up in feed she's gotten thrown off? I just don't know. Every time in the past when I've changed feed and wormed or anything else she's always been unphased.