Pig-rooting mare - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 10-10-2011, 05:22 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Bundy, Australia
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Pig-rooting mare

Hi, I am hoping this would be the right place to put this thread. I recently got a new horse, a mare, called Suzie. Just last Friday, and she has been getting used to the paddock etc. I rode her twice, bareback, on trails around my home and she was a gem, but today after school I got one of my saddles and put it on her and it seemed to fit. I could see light through it and it appeared to rest evenly. I fixed a girth and some stirrups on to it and took her out and mounted her up. I was going for a ride with my sister who was almost finished tacking up her little pony. These two horses have been together a little while and they are happy with each other and don't like to leave each other, although they still will. I walked her out onto one of the trails just outside home and it felt like she had ants on her legs and she swished her tail and stomped her back legs a bit. But she did it two more times when I walked her forward to see if she would stop but it became apparent that it was not ants at all. I turned her back so she could see the other pony, thinking that may be the problem, but she did it once more. I waited then for the other pony and then we walked down the trail but she continued to do it. Along this trail (it's very open) I have an arena I made so I took her in there for the first time and got off and lunged her and she was a good girl, although when she trotted she lifted her head as if she was lame, but then she stopped... Half an hour later, while my sister came back after wandering around on her pony, I got on, making sure her pony was in sight, and walked her but she continued to hop around. I disengaged her hindquarters and walked her around a bit but then got off and took her home, trying not to let her get a win.
After some thinking, I thought
* She is still new to home and may not be ready for a proper ride yet.
* I have been feeding her pollard, and i heard that soybean related products cause a problem with mare's cycles?
* She was being a mare?
* The saddle, although looking alright, may not have been the best one, Even though we hardly walked. I am going to try my other saddles that look like they fit.
* It was close to dinner time, or it was the afternoon.
* Her dental and chiro have been done, but it has been a while.
So I am attempting to do process of elimination, and I apologise for such a long thread, but maybe I could get some more knowledge from some more experienced people.

Last edited by SophieLee; 10-10-2011 at 05:26 AM. Reason: mistake
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post #2 of 3 Old 10-10-2011, 05:40 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
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Are you sure it's not up on her shoulder blades? My arab would do this if he didn't like the fit of a saddle. I did find one that worked and he was a totally different horse.
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post #3 of 3 Old 10-10-2011, 07:41 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Australia
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Good for you(and her) looking to rule out physical probs, not just assuming it's only behavioural.

It does sound like it could be a saddle fit problem. That you can see daylight down the gullet & it appears to sit evenly is good, but perhaps the gullet's too narrow, it's evenly tight all over, sitting over her shoulder blades, or when your weight's in it it's no longer even.... who knows. Balance International have a lot of good info on their site about saddle fit. If she's good bareback, I'd stick to that unless you're pretty sure you have a saddle to fit her well. Putting it on with a white cloth/towel & no other padding & going for a ride is a good way of checking saddle fit - the sweat & dirt marks on the towel will give you an idea of pressure points & such.

Interested to know why you're feeding her pollard & what else she gets? Is she too thin or such? I've heard mixed stories about soy beans, as you do with most things. I don't personally have a problem with them, but it pays to ask a nutritionist these things, rather than just going off what 'someone said'(not assuming that's what you've done either BTW).
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