LOOK OUT! Dan's falling over again!!

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LOOK OUT! Dan's falling over again!!

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  • When saddling horse tightening cinch makes him go to his knees
  • Horses fainting girth too tight

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    02-28-2009, 10:53 AM
LOOK OUT! Dan's falling over again!!

My guy keeps falling down or going down when I saddle him.

I am trying to figure out if he is holding his breath and fainting or is it a ploy to not be ridden..

He doesn't seem to be suffering any reprecussions from this but I do worry that if I don't have a quick release on his tie-down, he will hurt himself and sometimes he has a hard time getting back up if he goes down in a non-compromising area or position. To say the least of what he has done to my saddle thus far...

He seems to only do it when I put the cinch on and the most obvious thing would be "is it too tight". He will spread his leg out like he is going to urinate, he might pull back some, and then just folds his legs under himself.

You would think, after the first catastrophy being quite scary and uncomfortable for him, he would not do this deliberately, but he did it again yesterday...

And yes, after checking for any lameness, I ride him anyway so he doesn't really get away with anything.

Has anyone else ever had this happen????

I am going to put a cinch on him today with a rope and a saddle blanket to simulate a saddling, and watch to see what happens. I will post results later...

Thanks for any anyput anyone has.........
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    02-28-2009, 11:07 AM
Immediately after you saddle him walk him around.
    02-28-2009, 11:08 AM
My older horse does this. We were told when we bought him it is the result of an old injury from the cinch. He was a ranch horse in Montana in his younger days.
Anyway, what we do is tighten the cinch very slowly, just a little at a time, and walk him around between each tightening. When we do that he doesn't "faint". If we tighten it all at once, he'll collapse like that. It's not always immediate either. If I do it too much at once, even if I do it in steps like that, he'll do that when I go to get on him.
Another thing to do that may help is when you get it tight, stretch out his front legs to be sure the skin isn't folded under the cinch.

I hope this helps!
    02-28-2009, 11:20 AM
There is a really good article about this I was just reading on The horse web site
I'll post a link, let me know if it doesnt load The Horse: Excessive Girthiness
    02-28-2009, 11:48 AM
The link worked. Thank you so much. Dan is 22 years old. The previous owner had one episode of this. I am going to apply all that you nice people have suggested...

And maybe even get a new cinch....
    02-28-2009, 12:01 PM
We had a horse at Dixie who did that once. From what I saw, everyone was in a rush to saddle their horses for the show so they grabbed and ripped the cinches up as fast as possible without allowing the horse time to breathe, or adjust. When the rider did it to Hondo, he went down on his knees because the air was knocked out of him.

I would suggest taking a longer time to cinch him up? Do it in steps. A couple holes, walking him a minute, a couple more holes, walk him another minute and so on.
    02-28-2009, 06:40 PM
My old mare Kita used to do this about 1% of the time that I saddled her. A girthy horses, who is over girthy will try this. Don't give him any sympathy when he does this and discipline him like you would for any other bad behaviour that he does. It is a behaviour issue.
    02-28-2009, 08:25 PM
Wow, I'm glad you posted this, I'm very interested! I've been around horses my whole life and have never had or seen this problem, it's so unusual for me to find something that is completely new to me like that! I'm interested to find out what your results are :)
    03-01-2009, 06:04 PM
Hmmm that article was very interesting, Vida! My Wildey boy does the 'walking on eggshells' that they mention when girthed up too quickly/tightly... He also gets girth gall when not properly groomed/clipped in that area. I always thought it was just him getting used to the tightness on his belly.
    03-01-2009, 06:58 PM
I think that slowly working the cinch up tighter should help. I don't have a problem to that extent but Dobe will "blow up" when I tighten his cinch the first time so I have to tighten it, then walk him out of the barn, then tighten it again. Then the first time we stop after beginning the ride, I have to get off and tighten it again. Little turd.

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