My horses story/how his back was ruined. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-04-2009, 09:37 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Australia
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My horses story/how his back was ruined.

*Not sure if this is the right place, mods, feel free to move*

So, I was at a campdrafting clinic on the weekend, and I happened to meet the old owner of my horse, Bundy, and fill in his life story. It was very interesting, and revealed a lot.

Bundy was bred by the Lone Pine ASH stud. He was bought by Ian Laurie from Riverdale ASH stud as a stud prospect (yay, my boy was nice enough to be a stud prospect!). Ian kept him a colt until he was two, but he didn't turn out quite how he wanted, so he was cut at two, broken in and put on the market.

Then, enter the lady who ruined his back *glares*. She bought him from Ian. Now, she is quite a *large* lady. She is still quite a novice and nervous rider. she used him for trail riding and general riding, however he would sometimes hump his back as if to buck, and this unnerved her. So started the cycle of her sending him back to Ian Laurie to get some training, be 'fixed', sent back to her to be ruined again, and so it went for TWO YEARS. In fitting saddles, she changed the gullet to the WRONG ONE, knowingly, (at least now she knows, don't know about then) and rode him on day long trail rides in a badly fitting saddle with a hefty weight on top. No wonder the poor boy was humping, I would have tossed her ass into the dirt! It's a testament to my boys good character that he didn't. The lady asked a man she knew (Now known by me, also, where I got this story) to have a ride and 'sort him out', which in his book meant getting on with a crop and a huge pair of spiked rowel spurs and flogging the crap out of him. I know for a fact this guy has made other horses bleed from the spur.

So basically, this lady left him with a nearly crippled back and huge sensitivity issues with spurs. By the end I think she just stopped riding. She ended up getting Ian to sell him for her. Ian sold him to a lady near Gundagai, who had him for about six months.

This lady did a BUNCH of natural horsemanship and groudnwork with him. I think she did too much, she desensitized him to the point where he was dull to everything. She didn't ride much, and when she did it was on a loose rein with NO forward whatsoever. She also let him get VERY obese, he weight 600kl and he is 15.1h. He now weighs less than 500kl. She had to go to school, so sold him to me.

Now, I love this horse. He has the most potential of any horse I have owned, and has the greatest nature. You can do anything with him.

But I get so FURIOUS what people did to this horse in ignorance and stupidity. He now has white patches the size of my palm on either side of his wither. If you put the saddle on them, he bucks. Put it in the right spot, he doesn't. My saddle had been fitted 3 times, but still on all weekend rides the white patches come up in lumps, and he gets a HUGELY sore back that heals with rest. He shows NO signs of beign sore so I don't find out until I take the saddle off. (I check him before and after every ride) He is such an angel to put up with pain in his back and not complain. I'm hoping my handmade saddle will help his back a bit... but i'm not crossing my fingers.

He is now SO wary of spurs... It took me 3 rides to be able to touch them to him without him freaking out. Sometimes he still freaks out when I touch him, and it will be a long while before he completely trusts me not to flog him with them.

This horse has so much potential, and so much to give... I don't know what long term affects the damamge to his back may have. Yet through it all he has remained the sweetest, most docile horse. He just loves people... It makes me sick what people do to horses through ignorance or arrogance to these animals who trust us and look to us for care and compassion.

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post #2 of 7 Old 06-04-2009, 10:42 PM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Washington, USA.
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At least now he has someone who understands him, and does everything they can do to make him happy and comfortable. Maybe he'll have to retire from riding earlier than a horse who hasn't gone through that kind of abuse, but you seem like you will still love him even if you never ride him again. =]

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-04-2009, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Hopefully thats not the case... I have high hopes for him. But we will see how he goes with this new saddle when it comes... Thankfully he is ok for 99% of riding. The lumps coming up has only happened twice in 8 months, and both were hard, two full day weekends of riding.

And i'll love him no matter what :] We already have one forever horse, but when it comes time to move him on it will only be to the best of homes and one that matches his physical capabilities at the time.

It just makes me so sad that his potential could be ruined by such careless acts :[

The lady asked me if he ever bucks, and I told her about the pressure points. Her reply? "oh... I wonder if thats why he did it with me..." I just about saw red, lol.

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post #4 of 7 Old 06-04-2009, 11:53 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
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I had Sam up on the market for a little while. A rather large lady gave me a serious offer on him and I actually pulled him off because of her.

Sam's an official 'forever horse' now though my brothers just adore him xD

Wait! I'll fix it....
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-05-2009, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
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Its sad because her weight would have just magnified the problems cause by the badly fitting saddle.

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post #6 of 7 Old 06-08-2009, 06:46 PM
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That is so sad that your horse had to live through that kind of pain. It's amazing that with those kind of behaviors, the saddle fit wasn't the first thing looked at. I wouldn't blame the NH, though.

This lady did a BUNCH of natural horsemanship and groudnwork with him. I think she did too much, she desensitized him to the point where he was dull to everything.

Desensitizing does dull the horse to stimuli, but when it is properly balanced with correct sensitization results in a horse that responds to the right stimuli (the rider's leg), and ignore the wrong stimuli (that horse-eating butterfly). Don't blame the NH, blame whoever only did half of the job.

Good luck with the new saddle!

A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient one in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you ~ Unknown
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post #7 of 7 Old 06-08-2009, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Australia
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Thanks! The tree has been ordered and i've decided on colours/trims etc for my saddle, so now it's just a waiting game!

After four days rest his back was good again after the campdraft school, and he rode fine with no soreness for Games practice yesterday. Although he was in a VERY attentive mood, spooking at everything! Sure made the day a bit more interesting, lol.

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