Sudden roughed hair after removing saddle - please give advice!! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 02-27-2012, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Wisconsin, USA
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Sudden roughed hair after removing saddle - please give advice!!

We went on a trail ride last Sunday for just over 7 miles walk, trot and canter with a jump over a small ditch. She doesn't sweat very much or easily, but her saddle pad was wet when I untacked her at the end. All her hair was smooth as silk and I even commented how you would never know we just went on a ride. On Tuesday we did flatwork in the arena - w/t/c and when I took her saddle off she had the hair on the left side of her wither/shoulder roughed up which was very unusual. I was a little concerned but thought I would try again and see what happened. Well, yesterday we did a small jump school (1 foot verticals) and she was reluctant to move out (VERY unusual she usally tries to speed trot and canter the whole time) but her best bud, Pete, was in the arena too and she tends to try to just stay beside him the whole time although we are getting better at this. Anyway, I got off after only 15 minutes of mostly walk and some grudging slow trot and her hair was REALLy roughed up on the left side.

After all that my question - could the saddle fit change that much in 2 days? I have been riding her in the Wintec 500AP with a MW gullet in it for 2 years without a single problem. She went through 50 miles of endurance this fall with all As on her vet card. Could it be that the saddle pad got wet? I always flip it upside down over her saddle in the enclosed tack room to dry and check it before putting it on her. I am going to order the gullet set and see if she doesn't need the wide gullet for some reason, but it seems odd that the fit would change so much in 2 days. Any ideas? Suggestions?

On a side note: I have scoured the internet, local tack store, and harassed both my equine massage therapist and farrier for a saddle fitter and none travel to my area and all are too far away for me to travel to them and the one that is the closest at 3 hours doesn't have a place for me to ride her, so please don't suggest that I have a fitter out. I would love to, but it is not going to happen for now.

livestoride is offline  
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post #2 of 9 Old 02-27-2012, 07:46 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
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I hope to ease your mind a little.. there are days where I would ride and my horse's hair on his back was roughed up. It was simply a case of the pad slipping due to the girth not being tight enough or in slightly the wrong place or things not being 100% even (in terms of tack, not horse.)

Also, my horse gained and lost weight in strange intervals (he's a hard keeper) and so some days we'd be on hole 4 and others.. hole 6.

It could be that her back changed, or her fat layer changed. It could be anything. Maybe the saddle wasn't exactly where it should have been, or maybe it was slightly crooked when you mounted up.. Who knows.

Bad saddle fit causes pressure points, soreness, and all sorts of other issues on the horse, so if those arise when your equine massage therapist look at your horse, then it may be saddle fit.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #3 of 9 Old 02-27-2012, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Wisconsin, USA
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Thanks Sky :) I am a little obsessive with checking her for any soreness. I figure it is best to prevent it than try to treat it. I was a bit takena back by this sudden lack of fit. If I think about it, the saddle might have been a little looser than normal. She is the queen at puffing out when I try to girth her up eventhough I always just put it on the first hole and then go put on my helmet and half chaps and go back to tighten it more.
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post #4 of 9 Old 02-27-2012, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by livestoride View Post
Thanks Sky :) I am a little obsessive with checking her for any soreness.
Oh you and me both! My gelding has been through enough.. last thing I want to do is cause him to have a sore back.

I hope you figure the mystery out!

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"

Last edited by Skyseternalangel; 02-27-2012 at 09:42 PM.
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post #5 of 9 Old 02-27-2012, 09:43 PM
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When you put your saddle on, make sure it's EXACTLY behind her shoulder. If it's just the slightest bit ontop of it, it's going to slide back into place and it could rub.
My mare used to get that until my friend told me where to place my saddle.

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post #6 of 9 Old 02-29-2012, 12:32 PM
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You may be putting more weight on the front of the saddle on one side. A rider balance issue.
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post #7 of 9 Old 02-29-2012, 10:34 PM
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My girlfriend suggests checking a few different things-
1) bugbite in that general vicinity. Look for swelling.
2) check for a muscular injury in that area/soreness. Sometimes, inflammation can induce roughed up hair.
3) look at the opposite hip for inflammation/aggravation
4) check your alignment in the saddle.
5) try a different saddle pad. Sometimes they get funky, and they do wear out.
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post #8 of 9 Old 02-29-2012, 10:41 PM
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I was finding that recently and worked out it was due to my back being out so I riding more to one side causing the saddle to slip and therefore rub.
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post #9 of 9 Old 03-04-2012, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Wisconsin, USA
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Thanks everyone! AZ - I will look at her opposite hip. Didn't think of that. It could be due to me - I almost always assume I am the problem in the equation. I was out of town for a meeting all last week and have plans to ride tomorrow after work. Will see if anything is different.
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