Let's pick apart Thelma! Arabian mare critique - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 17 Old 11-11-2010, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Let's pick apart Thelma! Arabian mare critique

So now that I have had Thelma for three weeks (on saturday, to be exact...) and she's put on a little weight, I think she's in good enough shape to be evaluated.
For those of you who don't know Thelma, she is a 22 year old pure bred Arabian mare. Was previously shown at The Midwest Horse Fair and was used in a pintabian breeding program until 2000 or 2001. After that she sat in a pasture and didn't do much else until I came by. :)

Now that she has some weight on her, I plan to start longing her regularly and riding more often. Anywho. Here she is.



This is her when I went to go look at her, so you can see the differance already.




Sorry it's a little cockeyed. She kept trying to pull her tail away from me.



This one was half way through saddling her. So pardon the "undone" look.

And a view of her side now.


She still needs a little more weight and alot more muscle, but she's coming along. I already know about her upright shoulder and high withers (I cannot sit her trot bareback. It is like riding a jackhammer.) but what else do you all see?

Proud owner of ~Mana: 6yo Arabian gelding~Pearl 13yo Arabian~Danzer 14yo Arabian mare~ Tiny mini filly
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post #2 of 17 Old 11-11-2010, 10:10 PM
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Aww...she is really cute! Looks like you are doing a great job with her! She is lucky you came along :)

Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?-Edgar Allen Poe
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post #3 of 17 Old 11-11-2010, 10:40 PM
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She appears to be missing quite a bit of topline which I'm sure will come along nicely once she gets into more work.
Lacey had the same issue, she FINALLY has a pretty good topline now but she's basically living on a mountain that she has to deal with on a daily basis, which probably helped. Haha! I hope Thelma's comes along more easily for you that Lacey's did for me!

Another thing I noticed, in the picture with your saddle on her, is that the saddle appears to be sitting really high on her shoulders, like it's too narrow for her. She'll probably only get wider with work and muscle gain so if it's pinching a little bit now, it could eventually really impede her ability to work correctly and comfortably. Dang saddles! They make life so hard. :/

Also, Thelma is adorable! I just love her.

ETA: She's looking SO much better than the before picture already! Keep up the great work!

Fabio - 13 year old Arab/QH gelding
Hazel - 14 year old Angora goat

Atticus - 4 year old LaMancha/Alpine cross goat

~
Rest peacefully, Lacey.

Last edited by Wallaby; 11-11-2010 at 10:44 PM.
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post #4 of 17 Old 11-11-2010, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Wallaby View Post
She appears to be missing quite a bit of topline which I'm sure will come along nicely once she gets into more work.
Lacey had the same issue, she FINALLY has a pretty good topline now but she's basically living on a mountain that she has to deal with on a daily basis, which probably helped. Haha! I hope Thelma's comes along more easily for you that Lacey's did for me!

Another thing I noticed, in the picture with your saddle on her, is that the saddle appears to be sitting really high on her shoulders, like it's too narrow for her. She'll probably only get wider with work and muscle gain so if it's pinching a little bit now, it could eventually really impede her ability to work correctly and comfortably. Dang saddles! They make life so hard. :/

Also, Thelma is adorable! I just love her.

ETA: She's looking SO much better than the before picture already! Keep up the great work!
Thank you both on the compliments! I was petrified that she would get worse or something under my care, but she is turning into a chunk like Mana and Deja.

I am going to have to research how to build a topline without hills. I have hills, but they are massive and very very gradual. You don't even realize you are on them really. So that's not much of a help. *sigh*

And I actually planned to start a thread on saddle fit for her. See, my saddle is 70 years old and the bars are placed funny. Normal bars are usually about where the first saddle strings are, but on my saddle, they are at that bolt. I can fit my hand under there with it being just a bit tight on my fingers and there is a 2 and a half finger clearance at the pommel when I'm on her. I'm getting photos and such tomorrow, so you can come and help me there. LOL. I definitely don't mind saddle shopping if it's a necessity.

Thanks again. I am a big fan of Lacey. These two should sit and have tea one day together.

Proud owner of ~Mana: 6yo Arabian gelding~Pearl 13yo Arabian~Danzer 14yo Arabian mare~ Tiny mini filly
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post #5 of 17 Old 11-12-2010, 12:32 AM
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arabs generally need wider saddles. You really need to get something done before you cause her back problems, the angle of the saddle will be putting most of your weight onto the back of the saddle and into her lower back area

With or without hills - top line is gained through long and low :)

You want her to stretch with neck and use her back

Those feet are full of waves - given the time you've had her they're not your fault. Id be whacking her on a few hoof supplements and watch her like a hawk she doesnt founder on good grass

She looks good for her age

Hope that helps :) goodluck!
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post #6 of 17 Old 11-12-2010, 12:34 AM
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PS - do you use a farrier? Or do yur own feet?

If you have a farrier ask about working on those front feet to get her heels up off the ground
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post #7 of 17 Old 11-12-2010, 12:41 AM
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Originally Posted by jazir1787 View Post
with or without hills - top line is gained through long and low :)

You want her to stretch with neck and use her back

SO true! If/when you lunge her try to let her relax and bring her head down low while still keeping good impulsion...that should help

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post #8 of 17 Old 11-12-2010, 01:18 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jazir1787 View Post
arabs generally need wider saddles. You really need to get something done before you cause her back problems, the angle of the saddle will be putting most of your weight onto the back of the saddle and into her lower back area

With or without hills - top line is gained through long and low :)

You want her to stretch with neck and use her back

Those feet are full of waves - given the time you've had her they're not your fault. Id be whacking her on a few hoof supplements and watch her like a hawk she doesnt founder on good grass

She looks good for her age

Hope that helps :) goodluck!
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazir1787 View Post
PS - do you use a farrier? Or do yur own feet?

If you have a farrier ask about working on those front feet to get her heels up off the ground
The saddle has a 6 3/4 in gullet. I'll be putting up a thread for the saddle issue tomorrow, too. I'll have photos without a pad under it and such, so that I can figure out what needs to be done to get a good fitting saddle on her. Luckily, I'm lazy so I've only actually put the saddle on her twice now. Otherwise I just jump on her bareback. <Even though her back hasn't been very comfy until a week or so ago.

When I got her, I was told that her feet hadn't been done in a year. They were short, cracked, and flakey at the bottom like the periople was coming off. I do my own trims for the most part, but have the farrier out three times a year to come in and get a professional evaluation done. I had him come out two weeks ago to look at her feet. I trimmed off some ragged edges and did a little roll as best I could. (As I said, the periople was flaking off at the bottom, so I didn't want to go into messing with it myself.) Her feet had been self chipping and staying short, but they really need to be reshaped. The problem is that they were too short to do anything with, so we're letting them grow out a bit before we do anything on them.

Proud owner of ~Mana: 6yo Arabian gelding~Pearl 13yo Arabian~Danzer 14yo Arabian mare~ Tiny mini filly
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post #9 of 17 Old 11-12-2010, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Piaffe View Post
SO true! If/when you lunge her try to let her relax and bring her head down low while still keeping good impulsion...that should help
She is actually the most calm horse I've met. She puts her head down and goes to work when I ask and doesn't get all excited. (except when I take her out of sight of the other horses. Then you have a screaming monster. )

I read somewhere on here that ground poles are good for getting them stretched out and building topline?

Proud owner of ~Mana: 6yo Arabian gelding~Pearl 13yo Arabian~Danzer 14yo Arabian mare~ Tiny mini filly
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post #10 of 17 Old 11-14-2010, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by grayshell38 View Post
The problem is that they were too short to do anything with, so we're letting them grow out a bit before we do anything on them.
yeah I did the same with my girl, let them grow a bit too long so the farrier had something to work with, then cut them back to a good length. 2 years on she has lovely feet (and has gone up two shoe sizes!)

Goodluck :)
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