There is a rescue pony I use in my program that has recently been worrying me. Gully came to us a few months ago and was always awesome. He babysat little ones, jumped with the bigger ones and was just an all around great pony.
Don't get me wrong, he is still sweet as can be but he has started being naughtier with beginners and stopping at fences. I fixed all problems temporarily by putting him in a bitless and he seemed happy no one could pull on his mouth.
Another trainer (who annoyingly put a bit in his mouth today) said he was naughty so I jumped on him an hour ago... of course with the bitless. He was ok going around so we went over a few poles and then to a very little x. The first time over he walked, the second he leaped so far away I almost came off and the third, he took off so long he knocked down the standards. I do know he has slight back problems so I walked him out after that.
I wonder, could his back problem be making him misjudge his distances? He used to be amazing with them. I love this little guy and I only want what's best for him. Any input would be much abliged.