Sore Back

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Sore Back

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  • Sore forelimb make sore back horse
  • My mare is back sore

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    04-09-2011, 06:27 PM
Sore Back

So I avoided posting this, because I'm sure I'm just overreacting and I trust my coach implicitly. None the less here I am.

I bought my lovely mare back in August of 2010, and luckily for me (knock on wood) I have never had an issue since. Until now. We've been training dressage 5 to 6 times a week steadily since, with some breaks here and there. I train with an excellent coach, and the staff at the facility I'm in is fantastic.

On Thursday night I went out to ride. Anyone who rides 5 to 6 nights a week, I would say "knows" their horse, and how they feel on a normal basis. It felt to me as if her rear end was "giving out". Was very different and enough for me to call it quits after 15 minutes of light work/warm up. I had chalked it up to perhaps just a bad day.

I went out last night to see if the issue was still there and upon further investigation noticed that her back seemed extremely sore. I ran my hand down her back and she winced in obvious pain, this was with no pressure. It wasn't so horrible that she seemed super upset by it, but definitely noticeable. You could see there was some discomfort.

Automatically I took her to my coach as she is wonderful at diagnosing this stuff and giving us solid advice that works. She has a small scab on one side on her back, and there are some slight rub marks where the hair is shorter on both sides. My coach obviously noticed the issue and we have laid my mare off for a few days to see how recovery goes. We both agree there is an issue we have to address.

From what we talked about, it could be one of the following:
  • Saddle
  • Saddle pads
  • Rolled over a rock
  • General soreness from work
According to the saddle fitter who we use (who is wonderful), the saddle fits her perfectly. We re-stuffed it the last time she was out as it was wearing a bit, but other then that she said it looked great. When my coach and I talked, I took the saddle out with me and we looked at it again and it seemed to fit fine and look ok. That being said, it is a slightly harder saddle.

A few other notes, her blankets just came off and she's naked for the first time all year. I also started noticing her move away from the saddle when I put it on a couple of weeks ago - so my thought that she just rolled over a rock is probably not right unfortunately. It seems as if maybe this issue has been building over time.

As this is the first issue I've ever had with her, I am obviously nervous. Our first show was supposed to be next Sunday. I am more concerned about my mare then I am for the show, but just not sure what to expect over the next few days/during this season now that this issue has cropped up.

Has anybody had previous experience with this and if so, could you perhaps provide some insight? I appreciate all responses in advance.
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    04-09-2011, 06:36 PM
When did the saddle fitter visit her last? Schooling 5-6 days a week has certainly changed the shape of her back. A saddle will accommodate to those changes a little bit. If the hairs are shorter, they are being worn down by something. Try to match up where the hairs are shorter on her back and where her saddle fits.

My bet is on the saddle fit.
    04-09-2011, 06:37 PM
If I remember correctly, it was in January that the fitter was out.
    04-09-2011, 06:39 PM
You figure since January she has had a consistent at least 20 days of work a month. If you worked out that much, your body would change also. 60 days of schooling can totally change the way a saddle fits.
    04-09-2011, 06:40 PM

Does it make a difference that one side seemed more sore then the other? As the side with the scab definitely seemed, to me at least, to be more sore.
    04-09-2011, 06:41 PM
Oh I know girl! I just went through the opposite with my TB. He is very atrophied in his topline from lack of work. We have had to try every saddle that I could afford. I am a confirmed Western rider and now ride an Aussie...*laugh*
    04-09-2011, 06:50 PM
Thanks Corino! Anybody else?
    04-09-2011, 07:28 PM
I second saddle fit. Also, the reason that one side might be more sore than the other is how she has been carrying herself. You know how if one of your legs is sore and you start limping, the other leg will quickly get sore as well from bearing more weight and getting more work than it's used to? That may be the case here; she started to get sore on one side and then began to compensate to relieve the pain there and that made the other side sore, then she compensated again and just kept going back and forth and back and forth getting more sore every time.

Another little extension of that might be that she was being stiff to one side and thus, got more work to that side to work on that stiffness, which caused the uneven wear.

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