Help! Australian Saddle Fit
I live in Mexico and ordered a Kimberly Saddle from Down Under. I flew to DFW last week to pick it up and got home and tried it on my new horse. He is an Azteca, I would consider him to be medium width with fairly high withers. He is slightly underweight and lacks some muscle both of which I plan to correct over the coming months so he may be changing shape somewhat.
Anyway, I ordered a Medium tree, 18" and hoped for the best. First time I got on I realized that 18" was way too big for me so am going to go with a 16" and pass this one on to a friend here, but this is the easiest part. The hard part is deciding if it is fitting the horse.
I am afraid the tree is perhaps a bit too narrow for him? It is level but seems to be way up in the air! I can easily put my entire fist between the saddle and his withers. If I stand behind him I can see all the way thru the saddle to his mane with no problem. The first time we rode we got him nice and sweaty and when I pulled off the saddle he was completely dry where the flocking laid again him, front to back.
I am of the understanding that if a saddle is putting a lot of pressure on parts of the horses back that it can stop the horse from sweating so I guess this is the case? I rode again today, hoping I had perhaps it was as simple as I had cinched too tightly but even thought I cinched quite lightly, same thing. I am wondering if I should go with wide tree this time? I am thinking that if I go with a wide that I can add extra padding as needed? Or should I try to work with a medium tree? I don't have time for them to do a custom fitting (which I just found out that they did) as I need to order Monday morning as soon as they open and have them ship it out ASAP. I have a friend who will be in the USA this coming week and can bring it back so I have from now to Monday morning to make a decision, otherwise it will be February before I can get back to the USA to get another saddle.