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AriatChick772 08-17-2013 05:05 AM

Can't turn right
Long story half way short:

I train horses and was sent a nice little mare SIXTY days ago to "finish" on the pattern and start on poles. The owner bought her from a well known barrel racer in our area. The day she arrived it was a COMPLETELY different horse than I had been told about and seen in videos. I saw videos of this horse loping the pattern, not well but enough to pass as decent. Then I get on her and have to just about pull her face off to get a half way turn!

I went back to a Snaffle and put a heck of a handle on her, she'll tear up the barrel and pole pattern but when you have to turn right... she downright STRUGGLES to make it a turn. I'm completely convinced that she's hurting and the previous owner buted her up for videos and test rides until she sold her, and I've told the current owner this as well, but still wants her finished out.

Are there any exercises I could have missed that affects her turns? She couldn't pick up her left lead to save her life when she first arrived, that's fixed, she's super light in the face (unless she's trying to blow off a right turn), rollbacks, spins, flexes vertically and laterally, side passes, leg yeilds, counter arcs, great stop, lopes perfect circles...

any advice?
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alexischristina 08-17-2013 05:51 AM

Please tell me you're not using her face to turn...

Aside from that. When Jackson came to me he was HORRIBLE, he couldn't canter (he had one speed, flat gallop with his head up in the air), couldn't turn a corner, couldn't bend. I'd tried him myself and he was JUST FINE, I'm convinced that between me trying him and me getting him something happened (in retrospect it makes sense, his previous owner 'decided not to sell' for about a month, and then changed her mind. Maybe he was recovering?) EITHER WAY, after a couple weeks of that I had a chiropractor out twice (once to work on him, and then to re-evaluate a couple days later) and then a vet (turned out his teeth hadn't been done in years) and he was a brand new horse. A few more sessions of the chiro and now he's been happy and not had anymore issues. To me it sounds like a huge pain issue, and I would INSIST on having the horse vet checked before continuing any work.

Saddlebag 08-17-2013 08:06 AM

When leading her have her turn in a tight circle in both directions and watch her front hooves. She should be stepping over. If sore she may shuffle or hop, nothing smooth about it. Then ask her to move her hips over.

CLaPorte432 08-17-2013 08:10 AM

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id have her looked over by a chiropractor.

how is she flexing on the ground? can she turn her head all the way to her side both left and right?

something isnt correct here. ...obviously you know this...
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Corporal 08-17-2013 08:24 AM

I don't usually suggest this but it reminds me of my friend's mare who twisted her back. She got a chiropractor to work on the mare and she was loosened up AND bc a great riding horse afterwards.

AriatChick772 08-17-2013 01:10 PM

She flexes great, but when turning tight circles on the ground she steps all over herself. If she was mine she would have already been seen by a chiro.
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AriatChick772 08-17-2013 01:42 PM

Alexis, when she first got here I wanted to see where she was on the barrel pattern since she was supposed to be almost finished by this well known barrel racer, and after ONE lope through the pattern of her not turning and me *YES*, having to pull her face off to get a turn (I'm not about to run into the arena fence because I don't want to get on ones face), I went back to the basics. She knew a bit about leg pressure but in the videos of previous owner when she was ran on the pattern, they would hold her head out and AWAY from the barrel, that was hard to fix. She just has a hard time turning and I'm convinced that she's hurting. Hard to convince owner that, when they saw videos and the previous owner run her once in the test ride. But somethings not right with her and that certain.
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Saddlebag 08-17-2013 02:42 PM

I'm thinking she has a hoof issue when turning to the right. She's doing her best not to bear full weight on it especially with the turning motion. When she's relaxed, press your fingers into her shoulder muscles on the near side. They should feel a bit flaccid because they are relaxed. Now check the off side and see if the muscles are as relaxed or tense. When there is hoof pain it will radiate to the poll and down the back to the same side heel. The horse may have been buted to hide this.

alexischristina 08-17-2013 03:12 PM

I wish you could include a clause in training contracts that if something isn't right with the horse a vet / chiro / farrier could be called at owners expense. Might save some of these issues that I see a LOT of even with people who come to my trainer for help. Their horse isn't 'working quite right' and they assume training issue before pain issue.

jaydee 08-17-2013 03:42 PM

I think you need to insist that the owner has her seen by a vet or a chiro or both before you do another thing with her
I wouldn't work a horse that I suspected had some physical problems
If it gets worse the owner could well throw the blame at you - especially as they say it was sound and had no issues when you first saw it - and they have the video as 'evidence' of that if they want to get nasty and sue you for doing something to injure it.
You need to be very careful here

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