Broken Jaw :(
So a few days ago I sent Cheyenne (my chestnut gelding) to a friends house for some additional training. I also needed to get him out of there for the fact that my new gelding wouldn't leave the yard without Cheyenne. Anyways last night my friend stopped and he looked quite worried. I immediately knew something bad happened. Well he asked if we had ever used a bit with Cheyenne, and I told him we didn't, because we never had. Well it turns out that Cheyenne has a broken jaw. It's an old injury, the guy thought maybe a few months or it could've happened when he was a colt or yearling. I had noticed the other day his jaw was kinda offset but I thought maybe it was just the way his mouth was sitting. I didn't think much of it at the time.
But my friend said he opened Cheyenne's mouth just to see how old he really is, and some of his teeth were just hanging off to the side. His jaw is off to the side and he was a bad "parrot mouth" now.
I don't understand how this went unnoticed when it first happened but it really makes me angry. Now that this happened, this horse will not have a chance. He will never be able to have a bit in his mouth and at best he will be companion sound for the rest of his life.
That's awful, poor thing. But there is no reason at all that once it's for sure healed that he can't be taught to ride with a halter, or a rope hackamore, or something that doesn't go in his mouth. I don't know what your plans for him were, but I don't think that is something that would make him only pasture sound. It's ultimately up to you, but seeing what he looked like when you got him, and how much better he looks now, I wouldn't let this knock him out of the game. He has too much potential to become a pasture ornament. I'm sure if you devoted the time and energy to it, you could still use him, if nothing else, that as a pleasure/trail horse. Good luck!
How long have you had him? Has he been eating/acting normally before yesterday? You are sure this is an old injury? Obviously you will need a vet out right away to assess this.
On a positive note, I remember a horse who supposedly had suffered a broken jaw, and he was a fantastic riding horse. In all honesty I don't remember if he used a bit or a hackamore (this was about 17 years ago), but he was definitely ridable. Get him checked out.
Why does having a broken jaw make him 'only pasture sound'?
Broken jaws heal, and even if he can't wear a bit he can always be ridden in a bosal or hackamore.
JJ has a slight parrot mouth and it doesn't affect him wearing a bit, so I'm not sure why you think parrot mouthed horses can't take a bit.
Besides, a jaw being off to the side isn't a parrot mouth. A parrot mouth is used to describe an overbite.
How 'old' is old? A month or two, or are we talking years? If it's a years-old injury and he's eating well and keeping his weight, there's no reason he can't be ridden.
We had a colt (racehorse) that broke his jaw. It was a huge mess and he required surgery to remove bone fragments. While the recovery was long and getting him to the races was a bit of a different process, he did indeed get to the races and is now a successful racehorse. He races with a snaffle and a chin strap overcheck - a very normal setup.
The point of me telling you this story is to give you hope that the horse is indeed still potentially useful and to encourage you to have the horse seen by a vet that you trust - the horse I mentioned had a wonderful vet who worked with us closely.
Good luck and don't loose hope!
Lol, I'm sorry Speed Racer, but this whole past week because of your avatar I have heard you in my mind speaking like Yoda.
"Hmmm? Be ridden can he not? So sure you are? Hmm?"
You were already one of the most knowledgeable posters on this forum, and this just tops it.
I don't know about knowledgeable Skip, so much as my head is just crammed full of stuff, some useful, a lot of it not. :wink:
Or should that be, "Knowledgeable am not I, full of stuff I maybe am." :lol:
I'd rather be Yoda than an Ewok. Teddy bears with weapons give me the creeps!
My mare broke her jaw as well. It was very bad, she had to have surgery to remove bone fragments ( I still have everything removed) and a second surgery to try and reset the jaw correctly (which failed) she is way parrot mouthed but has been rode in everything from a snaffle to a broken shank. She was worked hard as well(5 days a week for 5 months) Its only been a year since this happened and the only thing we have to do special for her is float her teeth twice a year rather than once, pretty minor. She is perfectly rideable and sound.
I would invite you to go and feel under the jawbone of all horses. A very large percentage of them (that have been on herd turnout) MINIMUM have a calcification bump on one or both bones. Horses "speak" with their teeth and hooves. One horse bites - the other goes to kick - connects with the jaw bone.
So we figured out what was really wrong with him. They guy got a little excited and thought it was more than it actually is. We discovered he actually has an absessed tooth. Bummer. Poor guy. But its all taken care of now. He's for sale and a guy is coming to look at him this week sometime.
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