My horse just started laying down when I put his saddle on! Whats going on?
   

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My horse just started laying down when I put his saddle on! Whats going on?

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  • Why would a horse lay down with a rider on it
  • Horse lays down while riding

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    04-09-2012, 03:25 PM
  #1
Foal
Exclamation My horse just started laying down when I put his saddle on! Whats going on?

So about a week ago I put my horses saddle on and I went to grab the bridle and I saw him try to lay down, (going down in the front), I quick yelled at him and unhooked him and walked him around, then he was fine, I rode him and he was good.

So Today I have him in cross ties and groomed him and put the saddle on and went to go get my bridle, as soon as I turned away he started moving around and started trying to lay down. I kept yelling at him trying to get him to stop but he would just pop up then go to do it again. After doing this a few times, he actually got down, (I managed to undo the cross ties) he layed down flat on his side,(head down and everything), with the saddle on. He scared me half to death! I thought he was dropping dead or something! After laying for a few seconds, he got up and walked off. Then he seemed fine. He got scratched up pretty good but was sound. I lunged him to see if he was ok, then I rode him, he was perfectly happy and good when I rode him.
I am so baffled at this behavior, my trainer thinks it is a behavioral thing, but me and the girl that was in the barn with me don't understand.
Please help me and give your input
     
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    04-09-2012, 03:35 PM
  #2
Started
How tight is the girth when you first put on the saddle?

I had a horse do this to me a few times. She was sort of neurotic to begin with, but what I had to end up doing everytime I rode her was put the saddle on, tighten the girth so it was barely touching her belly, walk her around a little, tighten the girth another hole, walk her around a little, and just repeated the process.
     
    04-09-2012, 03:37 PM
  #3
Started
Well that's an interesting one. Never seen a horse do that so unfortunately i'm of no help but i'm interested to see what others say.

Welcome to the forum btw. :)
     
    04-09-2012, 03:42 PM
  #4
Foal
I don't tighten the girth up very tight, but I should try that and walking him right after I put the saddle on. This is just the strangest thing I've ever seen, thankyou for replying
     
    04-09-2012, 03:46 PM
  #5
Trained
My friend's arab gelding does this. He had a traumatic incident involving being cinched up and now his brain shuts down when he's being cinched and he'll pass out. First time we saw him do it, we were all just staring at him like . He was trained as an endurance racer and when he was cinched up before a race, they caught some of his skin in the off-side of the cinch (his right side). They apparently didn't realize or didn't care because they raced him like that. He now has a pretty bad scar on that side in the shape of the girth buckle.

What my friend has to do is put the saddle on him and cinch it lightly (just enough so the saddle doesn't slide around). Then she walks/lunges him in circles for a couple of minutes until he's relaxed. Then she brings him in and tightens the cinch a little more, then sends him back out to lunge a little. It generally takes her about five minutes to get her saddle all the way cinched up, constantly lunging him to calm down/disengage, then bringing him in to tighten it up a little more. He hasn't gone down on her since she started doing that.
Easter likes this.
     
    04-11-2012, 05:54 PM
  #6
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by DraftyAiresMum    
My friend's arab gelding does this. He had a traumatic incident involving being cinched up and now his brain shuts down when he's being cinched and he'll pass out. First time we saw him do it, we were all just staring at him like . He was trained as an endurance racer and when he was cinched up before a race, they caught some of his skin in the off-side of the cinch (his right side). They apparently didn't realize or didn't care because they raced him like that. He now has a pretty bad scar on that side in the shape of the girth buckle.

What my friend has to do is put the saddle on him and cinch it lightly (just enough so the saddle doesn't slide around). Then she walks/lunges him in circles for a couple of minutes until he's relaxed. Then she brings him in and tightens the cinch a little more, then sends him back out to lunge a little. It generally takes her about five minutes to get her saddle all the way cinched up, constantly lunging him to calm down/disengage, then bringing him in to tighten it up a little more. He hasn't gone down on her since she started doing that.
This made my day.
     
    04-11-2012, 05:56 PM
  #7
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Easter    
This made my day.
It's actually kind of scary when he does it. He hyperventilates, goes down on his knees, then just collapses onto his side. From the time he starts hyperventilating until he goes down is less than a thirty seconds, so most of the time it happens so fast, there's nothing you can do about it.

Not sure how that's funny.
     
    04-11-2012, 09:04 PM
  #8
Foal
When my horse was going down, I was terrified, after it was all done, my knees were shaking like a leaf! Definitely not funny
     
    04-11-2012, 09:37 PM
  #9
Yearling
I borrowed a horse once and when I cinched the saddle tight he passed out and dropped. I loosened the cinch and he was fine. I'm a lot more careful about how tight I cinch a horse. Especially if Im not familar with it.

As I've become a better rider, more balanced and more centered, I leave my cinches kinda loose nowdays.

I've been told there is a nerve that the cinch can pinch if it's too tight that will cause the problem. Some horses are more sensitive than others
chandra1313 likes this.
     
    04-11-2012, 09:51 PM
  #10
Green Broke
It is easy to "girt' a horse, the muscle were the cinch lies and runs from the sternum up behind the elbow over the ribcage is thin and sensitive compared to other muscles on the horse.

If the horse having any other issues, like short striding under saddle, you might consider having a chiro taking a look.
     

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