left front leg shorter than right/picture - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 08:48 PM Thread Starter
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left front leg shorter than right/picture

Just found out why our new mare has been so sore. She has been getting chiro/accupuncture 3 times so far, the last time the vet took thermal pictures that showed inflamation in different areas on her body including her back. So I had a saddlefitter out to check the saddle and to maybe recommend one that might fit her better(she has not been ridden since we found out her back was sore). The saddlefitter really impressed me. I had emailed the thermal pic's to him and he said he knew what was wrong with by just looking at the pic's. That may have been why her pelvis was tilted and basically her entire right side being off.
He put her left hoof on a thick magazine and she immediately squared up! I was shocked and really impressed he found this but the chiro vet did not. He recommended shoes with a shim on the left front and back right. Because we board we cannot do shoes on the back unless we keep her by herself so he said she will need to be trimmed properly on the back as if a shim was on the back right.

Has anyone had this problem and how did you deal with it? Did your horse end up being ok and also just wonder if you can put shims in easyboots (I mean besides the pads it comes with). I would rather not have shoes if she doesn;t have to and of course if she does she will! She is such a good sweet almost 5 year old and has never acted up with the pain she has been in. She is the one with the pad. The saddlefitter also told me that a horse will stand with the longer leg forward. Thanks for any advice or comments.
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post #2 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 08:53 PM Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=garlicbunny;1432010]Just found out why our new mare has been so sore. She has been getting chiro/accupuncture 3 times so far, the last time the vet took thermal pictures that showed inflamation in different areas on her body including her back. So I had a saddlefitter out to check the saddle and to maybe recommend one that might fit her better(she has not been ridden since we found out her back was sore). The saddlefitter really impressed me. I had emailed the thermal pic's to him and he said he knew what was wrong with by just looking at the pic's. That may have been why her pelvis was tilted and basically her entire right side being off.
He put her left hoof on a thick magazine and she immediately squared up! I was shocked and really impressed he found this but the chiro vet did not. He recommended shoes with a shim on the left front and back right. Because we board we cannot do shoes on the back unless we keep her by herself so he said she will need to be trimmed properly on the back as if a shim was on the back right.

Has anyone had this problem and how did you deal with it? Did your horse end up being ok and also just wonder if you can put shims in easyboots (I mean besides the pads it comes with). I would rather not have shoes if she doesn;t have to and of course if she does she will! She is such a good sweet almost 5 year old and has never acted up with the pain she has been in. She is the one with the pad. The saddlefitter also told me that a horse will stand with the longer leg forward. Thanks for any advice or comments.
I said right side was off, I meant her entire left side was off and she has been compensating with her right side. The chiro vet adusted her spine last time where the back pain was and the saddlefitter said she was out again in that spot. Only 8 days had gone by between vet and saddle fitter. Thank all!]
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post #3 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry I am clueless..the first message/pic can be deleted, the second one has more info. I tried to delete the first post but I didn;t know how. Again..sorry!
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post #4 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 09:04 PM
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If people would pay closer attention to this very thing? Many horses would not be so sore.

I've never seen a horse that didn't have a shorter leg on one or the other side. Sometimes not by much, but can be substantial too.

Trimming the hooves to compensate for this helps, leaving the one that is on the short leg slightly longer for instance?

But when I worked with TB's, we flew vet in from Atlanta that was really good at this, and trimming should help.

For that matter? Humans, nor are any creatures, symmetrical on legs, arms, hands what have you. One side is always different.

Leather shims/pads under shoes is probably best, at least at first, but if farrier will trim correctly, should have this solved.

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post #5 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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Oh thank you so much Palomine!! A ray of hope for our precious mare..Your feedback was very positive for sure..really appreciate your reply, farrier comes out next week so I can get him started on getting her back where she should be..thanks again!
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post #6 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 11:29 PM
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When this horse is standing square on level ground, look at her knees from about 10' away. That will show you how unbalanced the legs are. Does this horse have unmatched front feet, particularly in the height of the heels? It is correctable for the most part. I wouldn't worry too much about it.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #7 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 11:41 PM
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I have a horse with a similar problem, except it is a hind leg that is shorter due to a curved cannon bone. He's coming 2, so he's not been saddle broke or anything yet. I'm not sure how it will effect him when he is older.

On the front legs I have always heard it isn't that big of a deal because the front legs are in a sling of muscle and not attached directly into the skeleton (if I'm making any sense). It seems like I have heard that a club foot can sometimes be the result of uneven legs- nature's way of compensating.

I worry about my guy because his hips are visibly uneven and they don't have the benefit of the sling type of attachment that the front legs do.

What is the theory behind doing a shim on diagonal hind leg on your horse? Will it somehow affect her front legs?
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post #8 of 12 Old 03-30-2012, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Palomine View Post
If people would pay closer attention to this very thing? Many horses would not be so sore.

I've never seen a horse that didn't have a shorter leg on one or the other side. Sometimes not by much, but can be substantial too.

Trimming the hooves to compensate for this helps, leaving the one that is on the short leg slightly longer for instance?

But when I worked with TB's, we flew vet in from Atlanta that was really good at this, and trimming should help.

For that matter? Humans, nor are any creatures, symmetrical on legs, arms, hands what have you. One side is always different.

Leather shims/pads under shoes is probably best, at least at first, but if farrier will trim correctly, should have this solved.
That's a really good point Palomine. I know I have one leg shorter than the other too. It's probably more common that most folks realize!
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post #9 of 12 Old 03-31-2012, 05:51 AM
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I don't have any advice to offer but hope you manage to get her sorted - she is gorgeous
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post #10 of 12 Old 03-31-2012, 07:33 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all! The shorter leg is causing her left shoulder to drop which in turn is also causing her spine to tilt a bit downward to the left. Honestly I am not sure if that leg is the cause of all her problems. The farrier comes out Tuesday so will ask more questions and the saddlefitter comes about that time as well to deliver our new Thinline pads with shims. Since we bought her last June my husband has mostly been riding her and when her winter coat came in she had a big white spot behind her withers. I usually ride in from but occasionally he did and I would notice the middle back of the saddle was 4-5" to the right. When he moved the saddle to the middle he kept saying it didn't feel . Well at least now we know why!

Trailrider have you ever thought of having chiro done on him. It will help to even him out but it is a memory issue with the muscles and will have to be done a few times or so before it becomes permanent.
The reason for the back shim...he watched her walk and I can't really remember for sure but something about that leg swinging too far in or something.. I will ask him again when he comes back. I hope your horse is ok. I am getting positive feedback on our mare but is very exspensive with the acunpunture and chiro for both horses which includes a $90.00 trip fee as Dr is an hour and a half away and has been coming every couple months.
Puck, I don't think it is her hooves but when I looked at the thermal pic's I couldn't see the difference but then I am not the expert! I'm sure I will be continuing to keep learning as things progress.
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