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This is a discussion on Conformation within the Horse Riding Critique forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        08-31-2011, 05:19 AM
    Arrow Conformation


    I have had my OTTB Elly for 8 months. She has been in our family for 9 years, ever since she left the track at 5yo.

    She has been ridden for pleasure over the years. Since owning her, I have been doing some ground work with her to build my confidence. I haven't ridden her because I have always thought she was quite stiff with her posture and walking. I know nothing about horses but my instincts were telling me something wasn't right with her.

    I had an equine chiropractor out today who said she was very very sore in places, very tender to touch, tried to bite and kick him when he applied pressure to many areas. He worked with her, popping her back into place all over! I heard the pops! And even to my untrained eye, her body seemed so much more... relaxed? Softer? After he had treated her.

    After working with her, he said she is an incredibly sweet girl and will make a wonderful horse when I manage to be her boss instead of the other way around! We are working on that...

    It was a fascinating, educational experience. He was very generous with his time and knowledge.

    I took some photos today, I would love some feedback of her conformation.

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        08-31-2011, 05:47 AM
    First, good job paying attention and getting her treated by a chiro! Now she needs some groceries and muscle, especially in her neck/topline.

    As far as the conformation, it's hard to tell too much without her standing square, as even a nicely conformed horse can look wonky when resting a leg like that. Any chance you can get some of her squared up?
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        08-31-2011, 05:48 AM
    Oh, and what's going on with her rear left leg?
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        08-31-2011, 05:48 AM
    Groceries as in more food?

    What would you suggest?

        08-31-2011, 05:52 AM
    I will get more pics tomorrow.

    Not sure what is with her rear left leg! Will try for more photos.
        08-31-2011, 05:58 AM
    Yeah, more food. She's not horrible or anything, don't get me wrong. Good feed will go a long way in conditioning her. What is she eating now? Forage (hay and pasture) should be the bulk of her diet, but it looks like she has a bit of a hay belly? That should come off with continued work. Maybe someone else can recommend a feed? And since she's so sore, maybe the vet/chiro could recommend a joint supplement. I'd like to hear what others think....
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        08-31-2011, 06:04 AM
    She is on mostly hay and a couple of cups of Equea pellets. She has about an acre of paddock which being at the end of winter, hasn't provided much in free grazing.

    She had just finished her feed when this photo was taken.

    Someone suggested a cup of molasses in a bucket of water to me the other day.
        08-31-2011, 06:11 AM
    Hm, haven't heard of that before... what'd they say it was for? From what I gather on this forum, people are leaning towards lower starch, low sugar diets. Haven't heard much positive about molasses, but I certainly could have missed something. Sorry I can't help more with that.
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        08-31-2011, 06:15 AM
    They are a mixture of pollard, bran and Copra according to the tag on the bag.
        08-31-2011, 08:56 AM
    Did your chiro give you an idea of why she might have been so sore? Given the look of her topline and what looks like it might be a bit of a hollow spot behind her withers, I would wonder if you might benefit from having a saddle fitter out as well.

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