Let me start out by saying our Vet is coming out this week to draw Coggins on my horses (including this one) and when he comes out im going to ask him about it... Sooooo.. just trying to nip any "you need to call a vet out" discussion in the bud =) Im just curious to hear your input on it before he comes out.
Alright here's the scoop:
I just bought my new Breeding Stock Filly Poco Lady Charity (Charity) on the 1st of this month. I have brushed her, and even bathed her once in this time. I groom pretty thoroughly but im obviously not as thorough as I thought.
A few nights ago while rubbing her back, I let my hand slide about 8 inches below her Withers and kind of just behind her shoulder, and I felt what could best be described as "Just Ribs. No muscle, No Padding, Just ribs, and the "meat" in between them". (Picture a raw rack of Baby Back ribs.. how it has that Sinew-y stuff in between the bones.. that's kind of what it feels like). NOW.. the giveaway... the space that lacks muscle mass is about 4 inches by 4 inches.. the approximate size of a horse hoof!
Charity is about 11 months old I think (Born March 28th of 2008). This injury DID NOT happen the weeks she has been here. She has been seprate from my other horses. Not to mention.. this is not a sore spot for her at all, she doesnt mind when I touch it. Maybe this could have been a prenatal thing.. I have no clue, LOL.
She was bred by a guy who, from what I hear, has his horses in less than reputable living conditions, and doesnt provide mare care to his pregnant mares (i.e. No scheduled vet visits to monitor how the mares are coming along). She was donated to a Charity auction to raise money for a local disabled rider or something. She arrived at the auction COVERED in Rain Rot, and already has the white scarring from it (it broke.my.heart.) I mean.. lets take the living creature aspect OUT of this.... this guy donated a solid bred paint with no vaccinations (to my knowledge) that is COVERED in a sickness... and thought he was being good and respectful? I mean.. if I donated something for Charity... I would donate something NICE that will raise BIG money.. not throw away a horse that didnt come out as I wanted (which is what I expect this person did). Anyways.. a colleague of mine purchased her from the auction, and gave her to me in trade for a Kincade english saddle. Nice. LoL. The whole point to this paragraph was to say that im nearly positive it happened at the breeders place because of the lack of care.
I really hope this doesnt affect her in the riding department... I think its low enough where the weight of the saddle around the pommel will -not- rest on this area. This is just another question I am going to ask my vet this week.
My husband thinks that he feels that the ribs were broken then reset themselves -slightly- off. I can't feel it, but I will ask the vet about it and get x-rays if the need be.
Im also thinking that as she grows and her barrel/chest fills out, the spot may slowly move down her body as the ribs grow.. if that makes sense...
Its a shame to think there may be a potential that this horse lost any chance of ever being able to be ridden (if this bare-bone spot is too close to the pommel when she comes of breaking age... I may not be able to break her without hurting her. I do have a lot of time to look for another solution, like a weight distribution pad like Tacky Too makes). This might happen because some jerk didnt take care of his horses.... or it might have been a birth defect.. who knows, lol.
Anyways... let me know what you think (constructive replies only that pertain to the topic of the missing muscle mass... Please don't mention something about how you don't like her color or her shoulder angles or her gender, condition, or breed or something.. We all know how horse people can be. I don't want Constructive Criticism on anything off topic. If I want it, I will ask.
Could be scar tissue. My boss just got a new horse that at 3 days old, another mare reached over the fence and bit down on his back, right where the saddle lays. So he's got scar tissue on his back and a bit down his ribs where she had bitten him.
Things like that can happen if your filly had been bitten, or kicked, or ran into something with alot of force.
When you have your vet come out, have him/her test the filly's range of motion, make sure that the area isn't restricting other muscles. The only thing you can do really is massage the area to get it softened and to get more blood circulation.
I hadn't even thought of scar tissue! Can you still feel "meat" where the teeth were laid on him? With Charity, there is like, NO meat in that hoof shaped spot. It just feels like a raw rack of baby back ribs, lol (i have awesome descriptions, yes?) If I felt "tough" muscle, I would feel more reassured about it being scar tissue rather than dead/relocated tissue.
Even though Koomy was the only response, I wanted to let everyone know what the vet told me.
She gave me 3 different theories:
1- It was scar tissue, as koomy suggested. It could have formed from trauma as a youth, or it could have just "happened" I asked her to explain, and she said it literally could have been something that just randomly happened in early development.
2- She mentioned a Skin disorder with Quarter Horses, and my eyes bulged, as I assumed she was talking about the.. whatsitcalled.. "HEDRA"(?) disorder? Where the skin sloughs and falls off. She said most of the time its not obvious until the horse is broke to ride, and the skin has no elasticity. She said not to lose sleep over this option though, it was just something to throw out there (she is Poco bred, so it could be a possibility.. but I hope it isnt o.o) I've seen pictures of it in the past.. not pretty
3- Birth Defect. She could have been laying in the Uterus funny, or the mare could have been kicked while pregnant, etc. To where she was born with it.
She also mentioned after seeing the extensive rain rot, that she would probably have more scarring on her back before too long. Right now she only has a little patch (can be seen in my Horse tab for her). Poor filly... =/
lol and I called it HEDRA! I was close, I suppose :p the vet forgot what it was called, but she said it had been making "the rounds" in the Horsie Magazines over the last few years. That's how I first heard about it. They had it in Western Horseman a few years back :p crazy, crazy stuff o.o!
Thanks for the tidbit on Poco having to be on BOTH sides of the pedigree. I had no clue about that. I thought when Poco was -on- the pedigree there was a possibility of getting the HERDA thing (sort of like Impressive is with HYPP) Thankfully, her mother is a purebred Quarter Horse, but her father is a purebred Paint, and I couldnt find Poco on his side (at least not immediately). Here's her pedigree:
I love Poco bred horses too.. King is the smexiest stallion <3 Leo also has a nice butt :p!
And i've heard a bunch about MTG, but never tried it before. I might just give it a shot! =)
Dumas, i've found myself doing that too.. poking my head in a really interesting thread that I have no clue about, LOL! And thanks so much for the compliments on Charity! I love that little thing so much.. I call her Cherry-berry or Cherry-bear out in the field and my husband thinks im a loon LOL!