For the past week I have been posting in Hackamore threads that I had made an appointment to have my 5yo QH's teeth floated.
Primarily as a way to rule out bit behaivor, before actually dealing with the behavior itself.
Wow. And Wow. And double-wow.
The equine vet felt around inside Sam's mouth and said they were very pointed. He had no doubt that Sam was feeling discomfort not only from a bit but also probably from the hackamore.
So for that reason, I guess I am really glad I did not follow any theories that he was too young to have his teeth floated. (Nobody on this board said anything to me about that, but I have seen other opinions that it was an "old horse" issue.)
The procedure itself was very interesting to watch, although I much preferred the enjoyment from seeing Sam slightly drugged and loopy. His head was hanging as a low as a WP horse with his bottom lip completely dropped from his gums.
(okay, that was meant to be visually funny, no debates or slams intended).
I think at one point he fell asleep.
I would have felt bad for him but it was too funny watching his limp sagging body.
Afterwards, we drove back to the barn and I walked him immediately out to his paddock. I walked in him, turned him to face the gate, and took off his halter and gave him his "leave" command. He didn't move. Just stood there. I hugged on him a bit then walked away. Made it about 40 steps away and turned and looked. Still standing in the same spot.
He must of snapped out of it though when he heard the grain buckets rustling, because when I returned with his grain (I swear, it's like crack for horses) he was nickering at me at the nearest corner of the paddock.
My trainer has suggested I take today off, and use the hackamore for a few days starting Thursday. I haven't rode in over a week so he wants to start out back in the saddle without a bit and give him a few days to recognize the pain is gone.
I think Sunday afternoon we will try the argentine snaffle with a short shank to do a litmus test on his behavior. I feel confident that the bit issue was strictly teeth related and is neither behavioral or bit sensitivity. He rode perfectly (mouth closed) before so I expect he will return to it.
Has anyone else had to drug their horse for a procedure? Is it not the funniest sight?