Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Greenville area / SC
Southern Trails gave you good advise. I would suggest a synthetic saddle on a pony size horse (or pony). They are lighter and easier for your horse to handle.
The most important part of any saddle and especially a Western one is the tree. In those cheap saddles the trees are terrible. Many times they are warped or easily broken. (I know that many people buy them and will say how wonderful they are but they are not). Look around for a Fabtron, or Longhorn, or even a Wintec. Those are decent brands (Fabtron being the best IMHO) and you should be able to find some good deals on used ones.
If you are going used, btw, be very careful of the tree. To check the tree, place the saddle on a saddle pad pommel down - cantle up. Push down on the cantle and if there is any movement (seen especially in the seat) then walk away from it. Next, place the saddle on it's side (one side on the pad and one side up). Push down on the side and look/feel for "give" - there should be none.
Good luck going Western! I switched ~20 years ago and I'm loving it.
Oh, and since she has a short back, try to find a saddle with a round skirt - and 15" - 15 1/2" seat is the correct size coming from a 17" English
I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.
Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
It's not always what you say but what they hear.