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This is a discussion on Ideas? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    11-04-2010, 08:57 PM

I posted in this section when my horse seemed a little colicy several weeks ago. We felt that there was a chance she had lyme disease but had to wait to do the test. She got better and things were ok.

Well within the past two weeks I have pulled probably about 6 deer ticks off her and she started to act weird again. We had the vet out to take some blood, but we got the results today, and they say it's definitely not lyme disease.

I'm going to ride her tomorrow to see if she is doing any better, but I doubt it, because she was acting weird yesterday. If she isn't doing well, I'm going to ride Monday and the vet will be there to watch me ride her.

I now have no idea what's wrong with her, so even though the vet will probably end up coming out again I was looking to see if anyone had any ideas what may be wrong with her.

Here is all the info:
Even though it has been a while, one thing that may be something to keep in mind is we moved to this barn two months ago. I am a junior in college and decided to move her closer to me this year. She had been at the same barn for almost all her life before that.

The first time she wasn't feeling well she seemed a little colicy; wasn't eating her food really, wasn't drinking a lot of water, laying down, slight fever at one point, etc. But she bounced back from that.

This time hasn't been that bad. She just hasn't been acting herself; definitely a change in behavior.

The last time I tried to ride, she wouldn't go one way around the ring. We would be going along the rail and she would turn to the outside and absolutely not let me turn her back; she would threaten to rear. I got off eventually and went up to my trainer and asked if she could watch her. Well when I tried to get back on and go into the ring my trainer was in, she was NOT having it, she just kept trying to turn around and go back to the barn; threatening to rear again.

My instructor had the idea that she may be getting ring sour so I should go walk/trot her around the 1/4 mile track we have. Tried that; wouldn't walk forward at all; threatening to rear again; we just kept going in circles.

At one point I thought she may be getting tired of working. Over the summer, I only rode her once or twice a week and now that I'm at school I'm giving her a good work out about 3 times a week, and usually one day of some light lunging. However, she just doesn't seem like herself.

I hope I got everything. Any ideas are greatly appreciated! And sorry for the short novel!
Thanks so much
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    11-05-2010, 09:53 AM
If this is a new behavior, it could be indicative of pain. Either you or your vet need to check along her back and neck to see if she has some tender spots.

Daughter's friend is a trainer and had a similar issue crop up suddenly with her dressage horse. Had an equine chiro out and after just a few treatments, her horse's willing attitude was back, and he was behaving like a youngster again.
    11-10-2010, 12:34 PM
So I thought I would give everyone an update.

By the way, thank you for your reply, Dee.
The vet has checked over her whole body both times she has been out, and everything is good. She says she has one of the soundest backs she has ever felt.

The vet did an oral exam on her. She said her two back molars on either side were very sharp. She had her teeth floated in May, but the vet said it seems that they may have missed her very back teeth because they are as sharp as a needle.

While she said she can't guarantee this is what is bothering her, it is very possible the bit is pushing up against it on the outside and this is what it is pissing her off and making her reluctant to work.

So she floated her teeth again [well, mostly just the back because she said the others looked great]. I am going to be riding her almost every day this week and we will see how she does.

I'm going out today to ride her for the first time since she had her teeth done. [They gave her a little bit of a sedative when they did her teeth, so I obviously couldn't ride her right after that].

I'm expecting a little hesitancy, but hopefully she is better now. If not the vet said she would come back out for an under saddle examination.
    11-10-2010, 12:52 PM
Green Broke
If it's not a pain issue, and the teeth turn out not to be the cause another possible theory is environment change. I know you said you moved her. How far? Is she in a cooler climate that may bring out the friskiness in her? Mine act like nuts when the weather starts getting cold, not wanting to listen, acting out of character. They usually get over it pretty quickly... Good luck today and keep us posted.
    11-10-2010, 03:42 PM
Yay! Mystery solved =]

Stupid teeth.
    11-10-2010, 03:44 PM
What a relief... I was going to suggest erlichia though. Also tick borne...

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