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LemonZeus 11-05-2013 02:19 AM

Strange lump next to spine? Help, not going away!
For about two months now, my gelding Zeus has had a strange lump next to his spine. I noticed it one day after jumping him on a lunge line (teeny jumps-- maybe 6" at most). He didn't give me any signs that he was hurt, but I quit him and let him rest until I could get a chiropractor out. The swelling around it went down after about 3 days. She didn't even know what it was, and just said it was "weird". She adjusted him and he's been riding normally, doesn't seem to bother him while under saddle. It's firm, pea sized, and the skin moves over it so it's not a bite. We were on an easy trail ride last weekend, and he seemed kind of uncomfortable, so we walked back and untacked to see what was up. Sure enough, the swelling was back! It's definitely tender when swollen, his whole back tenses up when feeling it. I'm so confused. :?

The swelling around it is about 3"

wdblevin 11-05-2013 06:12 AM

Sounds like it is time for a vet call.

Let us know what you find out. I hope everything is okay.

Lexiie 11-05-2013 08:14 AM

My mare had something like this... I figured it was a hematoma. (Sp??) That she had rolled over a rock in her field or something.
It went away after a month from me seeing it. It didn't bother her when I rode her, but I would call the vet. Lol
Just in case. Hope it's all okay(:
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missaddie 11-05-2013 09:57 AM

There are many things it could be, but here is my experience.
A mare I work with, a 16 year old Welsh Cob, had a bump very similar to this. It was up a bit closer to her withers then your boys is. It wasn't super sensitive, but out of no where one day it became itchy... and I mean ITCHY! All you had to do was lay a finger tip on it and her lip would go out, and she would rock back and forth. It was also apparent that it was uncomfortable. So we had the vet out and first tried some ointment on it to see if it was a surface fungus. It didn't go down but within five days her discomfort had greatly increased so we had the bump removed. The vet though it could be a sarcoid, a fatty tumor, or something that had been pushed under the skin when she had rolled in the pasture. Her "bump" went all the way down to the muscle, and was a descent size. When you looked at it from the top it looked about the size of your boys.
We sent the mass out to have it checked and it came back... as a fungus. A very nasty fungus! The vet said that it is not seen very often. The mares personality immediately improved, and I am so glad that we had the bump removed. Because of the size of the wound, and the fact that her stitches kept pulling apart, it has been a relatively long recovery. But! She is happier, healthier, and much easier to handle.
Now that is probably not what your boys problem is, but it is probably in your best interest to get the vet out to have a look. It could be nothing, but you want to make sure! =]

Chevaux 11-05-2013 10:05 AM

Subbing to find out what the resolution will be.

Best of luck with it Lemonzeus.

Cherie 11-05-2013 11:33 AM

Are you anywhere around cattle? It could be a warble or grub. They usually only come up on the backs of cattle, but occasionally a horse gets them. If it is one, it will develop a tiny hole in the center of it and it can be removed without making an incision.

In the mean-time, you can buy a cheap felt saddle pad and cut a hole where it is and then riding will not irritate it.

LemonZeus 11-05-2013 04:40 PM

Lexiie- That's what I thought too, when he first got it! I kept waiting for it to go away, but it never did :(
missaddie- Thanks for the info! I'll definitely mention it to the vet!
Cherie- Hmm, he's not near any cattle. But hopefully, whatever it is, it'll be that easy to deal with :) Thanks for the tip!

The vet's going to come out within the next day or two...

Pyrros 11-05-2013 05:02 PM

Very curious to see what the vet has to say! My OTTB gelding I used to have had something almost exactly like that show up on his back about 5 months after I got him. It was right along the top of his spine basically and hard. I thought it might have been a chiro issue but it was still there after he was adjusted. Remi's was about the size of your horse's all the time, no swelling, just a hard lump. It was sensitive to pressure. I had a vet out and that was a joke, he LOOKED at the horse, did not touch him or ask any questions, said 'I don't know, it's weird, probably needs surgery.' Charged me almost $200 for that and left.

A few months later I noticed it was no longer sensitive to pressure, he didn't drop his back down if you tried to touch it. After that I just started riding him bareback everywhere. The 'lump' was farther back, just past mid back (he was a 17.2hh tb with a long back) and when he was ridden bareback you didn't put pressure on it and he was good to go! I think I tried riding him ONCE with a saddle after that and he was not enjoying that one bit. Went back to bareback and had no problems with the mystery lump. He ended up being retired from riding completely but his back never seemed to bother him.

Saddlebag 11-05-2013 05:09 PM

Check his pad very carefully and the underside of your saddle. Perhaps a nail has come loose just enough to create the swelling.

LemonZeus 11-05-2013 05:33 PM

Oh wow, Pyrros! It's basically the same thing! I've looked on google ever since he got it and I've never found anything about it... I'll keep that in mind about bareback :-) he's a sweet old guy who acts ancient for his age (11) so he tolerates all kinds of bareback shenanigans.
Saddlebag, I've checked his saddles/pads, and nothing :-( I've been trying to use an Abetta on his because they're so light. Any other time, I use an English saddle with a thicker pad underneath to protect his back. I've been looking into ThinLines a little bit, anyone have experience with them?

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