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Eventer105 03-04-2013 12:50 AM

Sensitive backed horse
First, to put this out there, I am not sure if this is the right thread. If not, somebody more knowledgeable please point me in the right direction!

Long story short, I have a Oldenburg/TB with a sore back. We had a saddle fitter come out and fit my Wintec with CAIR. Fast forward a couple weeks and the chiropractor came out. His back was a bit sore. Then a few days later I got some new saddles to try out. In the new saddle (on trial) without CAIR he seemed less sensitive through his back but some of it was still there. I found out that he does not do well with the CAIR system. I ride 6 days a week doing dressage and jumping type stuff so it it very important for me to make him comfortable. He is still a bit underweight, and we are hoping that once he puts the weight one, it will make him less sore after riding. Other then that, I have heard that Thinline pads help with concussion. I have also heard that Back on Track pads can help. Keeping in mind that I am having to dish out quite a bit of cash for a new saddle, is it worth it to buy these extra pads? Is there anything else that you would recommend for a horse with a very sensitive back?

Cookies for everyone that read this far! I am really looking for some answers on making my guy more happy.

Freemare 03-04-2013 09:49 AM

Pads can make a big difference in how a saddle fits. You might try a thicker pad. Also his weight being down can make a difference as well in how the saddle fits.

gypsygirl 03-04-2013 10:02 AM

how underweight is he ? i would not buy a saddle until his weight is up. maybe it would be a good idea to ride more lightly until he does gain weight.

i agree with the above poster, try a sheepskin pad and see if that makes him more comfortable with the saddle on.

loosie 03-04-2013 04:35 PM

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I agree that I wouldn't try to fit him now for a saddle, if he's lacking weight/topline *unless you understand how to fit it wider, with the use of shims, so it will be comfortable now and when he gains condition. Also agree that I would only be riding very lightly until he gains a good topline - muscles can't develop while they're being compressed under a saddle, so exercise without saddle &/or rider is helpful.

The chiro said he had a sore back? So I guess he did some adjustments? Did he recommend further treatment? Did he recommend anything else, such as massage or such? Yes, I haven't found CAIR to be much chop - I think it's the economy version of 'Flair' which is much better IMO. But I've had & also heard of countless others who have had issues with CAIR, whether it's the 'seam between the sections or otherwise - not all it's cracked up to be.

albertaeventer 03-06-2013 12:01 PM

It's good you're getting the saddle issue addressed first, that's the most important thing. I have a mare who is sensitive and cold backed, and while her saddle fit properly, we'd always have back humping and bucking in the first part of our rides. I bought a BOT back warmer pad, mine was around $75, just to try, as I was pretty skeptical about them at the time. And what a HUGE difference! I don't ride in it, but I bring her in, put the back warmer on while I'm grooming and tacking up, so it's on for about 20 mins before I ride. Her back is more relaxed and tons looser when I get on now, since the pad kind of "warms her up" beforehand. The humping and bucking is now just every once in awhile, instead of every ride. And she stands so much quieter in the cross ties with the pad on too, she was always super fidgety and anxious in the barn before, but she just sort of sighs and relaxes when I put it on. So as long as it seems to make her happy and seems to help, I'll keep using it:)

Maybe see if you can borrow a pad for a couple days before taking the plunge to buy? Of course it may not work on every horse, but I think it would be worth a try!

Jetson 03-08-2013 02:12 PM

Are you sure it has to do with the saddle and padding and not something else? Of course I have no idea, but I had a horse that I went through a few saddle fittings and he was still sore backed. Come to find out, arthritis in the hocks. I would touch his back and he would drop it from pain and it was stemming from pain in his hocks and the way he moved to aleviate the pain. I spent a lot of money in saddles, pads, chiro.

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