Me and another trainer are currently working with a mare that is well rather clumsy in her gait. She is trippy feeling she will take a couple strides and then kinda stumble and rinse and repeat. Her feet are in great shape. We have he trimmed like any other horse no long toes or anything like that. Anyone else out there worked with a similar situation? How did you correct it if so? Is she just not paying attention to her feet??
I'd have the chiro take a look, then saddle fit, then if all checked ok, I'd put her over some trot poles (Cavaletti) to MAKE her pick those feet up. This was part and parcel of Rascals rehab. It does wonders.
BTW yes, I know she is gaited, but she can still do the trot poles and build the booty. Hill work at a walk is good also. Once you start building the muscle and if she is still doing it, she may not be reaching far enough under herself because she is lazy. What kind of conditioning are you doing, how old is she, is she on a regular workout schedule? Sorry but these things need to be considered also....
Rascal forges and if I forget to put his boots on, he'll short stride with his back end to stop himself clipping his heels. Almost corrected the forging with a good farrier though :)
I might get shot telling you to trot her out instead of worrying about the gait so much, but Meh, trotting works.
ALL light horses mature at 6 years, plus or minus a couple of months. So what you've got is a lanky, mildly uncoordinated, unfit, unmuscled teenager. Trust me when I say that heavy shoes, action devices, cavaletti, etc. will not solve the problem. Tincture of time along with an intelligently wetted blanket will!!!!! :-)
I've got three, 3 year old Marchadors that we are starting this year. All have some "coordination" issues. All have a bunch of growing up to do. Since I intend that they have long "service lives" they don't do much besides learn basic discipline while under saddle. Next year they will begin to learn work that will prepare them for work over fences, shooting, and other more athletic stuff. In their fifth year we will begin very serious endurance training and strength building. In their sixth year, more or less, they will be ready for any specialized work an owner might like.
You have a problem that is ONLY going to be solved by time, and a lot of it. Spend that time wisely and you've to a long term horse. Go with shortcuts and you'll shorten that overall "service life."
Good luck in making your choice.
I agree about the immaturity. I don't have a problem of posting the trot of my 6 yo KMH, when he does. A lot of folks don't have their gaited horse(s) in the back yard, so they don't see HOW OFTEN they trot when turned out. Mine do, but they generally gait when ridden.
Guilherme, you're the first Marchedor owner I've ever talked to. What are their gaits like?
I understand that the Brazilians train and ride a great many stallions. Is that what you own?
I have seen your horses in other threads you have posted and you seem very very knowledgable about gaited horses and I truly respect your view on my situation and I have to say I completly agree with you as well! I think you are really onto something with this. She is after all very young (days away from 3yrs old). So you feel that with time this tripping thing within her gait will dwindle away?
Yeah, you have a gangly teen but I have noticed those that stumble tend to stumble their entire lives. There are things you can do to improve things.
-Muscle her up.
-Short toes that are squared off. This helps improve her break over and decrease stumbling.
-Work her on rough ground and don't let her sight see as she goes to force her into paying attention.
I am working her with a walking horse trainer friend of mine and she rode her today with blinders. I havent got a chance to talk to her yet and see how she did. I am going to have her trimmed and see if it helps with the feet. Thanks for the help Darrin!
Ok, I didn't realize she would be that young. My bad for answering before I asked LOL. I'd be cautious since she is so young, but I prefer waiting till they are 4 to seriously start them working. *shrugs*
Just about every stumbler I have come across was started hard & early, injured in some way, conformationally challenged, or had serious issues with saddle fit. It's not anything but what I have personally seen. I can't back it up with facts or figures :) so take it for what it's worth.
I don't agree with squaring off the toes though. Gaited horses put a lot of torque on their feet anyways and if you square them off, it'll add to the issues. IMHO Just watch her move while gaiting.
Does she toe out? Does she land heel first? Is there any hitch in the shoulder when she stumbles? Is she shod now? Is she nicely balanced working her from the ground? If not, then it could be a matter of simply conditioning her more....
If you ask 15 people you'll get 18 answers. She is your girl and you will know her best, so try different things with her. If something doesn't work, try something else :)
ETA: I'm not a trainer BTW. This is all personal and past experience.
Assuming no underlying injury, conformation issues, tack fit issues, equitation issues, etc. and proper conditioning then, yes, the "tripping" issue will just "go away." There is a very low probability that it's a "mental failure" (i.e., failure to pay attention to what they are doing). In a state of nature a horse that did this would quickly become injured and dinner for some pack of wolves or a cougar or something else. That's why I consider it a low probability item. Low probability, however, is not zero. But it would be the last thing I'd think of, not the first.
With youngsters you must be consistent and understand that they are youngsters. They are not going to perform as well as a fully mature horse no matter what you do. So don't try and beat 'em; join 'em. :D
The hardest medicine for any human to administer (or take) is Tincture of Time. It requires patience and that can be in short supply. But properly used it cures a lot of ills. :-)
Good luck in your work.
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