Severe Head Bobbing: No Leg Lameness!!
I own a 9 y/o thoroughbred gelding who for the past 8 months has exhibited back/hip problems with no explanation we have been able to find. I am posting in the hopes that someone has experienced something similar or can direct me to much needed help and information.
2 years ago my gelding injured his sacroiliac joint (we believe by falling or rolling on a large stone in pasture) shortly after that he was rested and received chiropractic treatment to adjust twisted hips. Following the treatment he remained sound and in excellent condition for 2.5 years. However this past winter he began knocking himself in the front lower ankle, causing periods of lameness from 5 minutes to 1 hour (depending on the severity of the knock) , furthermore he began exhibiting this lameness / knocking shortly following jumping (up to 2 ¼’) His feet were slowly adjusted (to reduce the inward swing of the front left foot) and the knocking has since stopped with the helpful addition of SMB elite front boots. However he began head bobbing shortly after the knocking stopped (5 months ago). The head bobbing would start and stop randomly (no association with gait, collection or time worked) it would last anywhere from 3 steps to prolonged minutes of head bobbing and ranging from mild to severe. However there was no associated change in gait (not lame) and it did not happen everyday. The head bobbing occurs almost exclusively under saddle with only three instances on the lunge line, all of which followed bucking, kicking and/or rearing. The head bobbing seems to follow after he is asked to collect or around 20 minutes of work. He has been given bute, roboxin (muscle relaxer), he is on multiple joint supplements as well as electrolytes and vitamin e, he has had both his sacroiliac and his hocks injected, been given chiropractic treatments and massage therapy all with no results. He was x-rayed and exhibited only very minor arthritis of the hocks (typical of a working horse his age), he was sent to have scintigraphy and showed very minor positives around the sacroiliac and the hocks (which resulted in the injections of both joints). This past week he received chiropractic, massage and shockwave therapy to the back from behind the cantle through the sacroiliac. Furthermore I have tried every type of saddle pad from high whither, to shock absorbing and gel pads. Unfortunately all with no result. So if anyone has heard anything like this case, or thinks they may know something about it please write back. If you have any further questions I am more than happy to clarify. Our next step is acupuncture and a saddle fitter.
Thank you for you time