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Journey 01-18-2012 11:18 AM

How do I know if my saddle fits right?
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I have a horse that tends to lay down when I ride her and I'm starting to wonder if maybe my saddle doesn't fit her right and is uncomfortable, but I don't know how to tell if it doesn't fit her. Also I have a regular saddle blanket and a therapeutic saddle pad. I think I usually use the blanket on her. Would it help to use the therapeutic pad instead even if the saddle doesn't fit right? So how can I judge the fit of the saddle? She is a 10 y/o Tennessee Walker I would say she's a little underweight although a lot of it is probably under muscled. My saddle is a 16 inch Western with I think has full QH bars. I've included a picture of her wearing the saddle and blanket if that helps any. A little background on her: we adopted her and her 8 mo/o foal in March last year (2011). They had been neglected before being rescued and as far as I know they were not physically abused in any way. I have no idea if she was ever ridden prior to us riding her.

MIEventer 01-18-2012 11:44 AM

I don't know much about Western Saddles - but it appears to me to be too wide. The front end of the saddle is too low for my liking, and you can see that the rear of the saddle is "lifted" up - or not making contact properly in the rear.

It doesn't look balanced.

Ally Greeneyez 01-18-2012 01:40 PM

umm... it might fit if you tighten the girth it looks a little loose ;D

Ally Greeneyez 01-18-2012 01:41 PM

but then again that could just be me :)

TKButtermilk 01-18-2012 01:59 PM

Tightening the girth won't do a thing when the actual saddle is too wide, which is why the gullet is so low on the withers and like was said before, it isn't balanced. There may be a way to build it up using a pad to make it fit "alright" however it'll never be perfect. I had the opposite issue with my amazing pink seated barrel saddle, debated getting a new horse instead of selling it! (just kidding, kinda haha). It was much to narrow and instead of sinking like yours, mine pinched like crazy. Saddles just have to go and be so difficult.
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randomrider92 01-18-2012 02:08 PM

That gullet is too wide on her, even with all that padding. She looks like she a gaited horse like a walker, is that correct? I would invest having a saddle fitter or someone at your local tack shop coming out to find her a saddle that will fit her correctly.

equiniphile 01-18-2012 04:28 PM

Definitely too wide, which isn't going to be helped by tightening the girth. It looks like it's pressing down on her withers, which can't be comfortable.

Joe4d 01-18-2012 04:57 PM

That saddle is horrendous! Please dont ride her in it. You can see from the picture it is way down hill and crushing her withers.
A TN walker is NOT a quarter horse. Please dont put a quarter horse saddle on her. Every walker I have owned came to me with behavior problems caused 100 % by people doing exactly what you have done in the above picture. Usually they go away when you quit hurting them.

randomrider92 01-18-2012 10:46 PM

And to Joe4d, I completely agree with his comment that you need to get a gaited saddle.

SorrelHorse 01-18-2012 10:56 PM

Agreed. I haven't owned any walkers, but I did have a peruvian that definately needed him a special saddle because none of mine fit him.

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