Could Kodak have navicular?
As some of you know, my journey with Kodak has been full of bumps. And bruises. And a concussion. I've had her over three years now, and she is no better, in fact, she has gotten worse over the last year or so. It's not so much her spookiness that is causing issues, but she's been consistently "ouchy" in the fronts. To the point where anytime we ask her to canter, she will do a stride or two, then stop suddenly, put her head down between her legs, and act like she is going to buck. She doesn't, however. But we haven't pushed her further to see if she would actually follow through. I will usually just regroup, and try the canter again. It doesn't improve.
After having her treated by two chiros, a massage therapist, and looked at by a couple of vets, we've had no luck identifying any issues. Her back seems fine. She probably doesn't have the best fitting saddle (though I have tried her in several), but here's the thing - she does it on a lunge line too, without a rider on her. And she's had lots of rest, because we hardly ever ride her anymore.
A new person moved into my area, however, providing all sorts of treatments. They include red light therapy, and equine podiatry. I figured I'd give it a try, desperate to see if there's any way to help Kodak. After an assessment, three treatments and a reassessment, she believes Kodak suffers from navicular syndrome. Essentially, she has identified a few symptoms, specifically, some inflammation around the pastern, a very choppy gait (I'd always found that with Kodak, but moreso in the last year), thin soles, and a strong reaction to hoof testers around the frog area. She suggested I get radiographs to confirm or rule out navicular.
On the other hand, my barefoot trimmer does not think it's navicular. She is of the opinion that Kodak's central sulcii are causing the problems, as they frequently open up, requiring me to treat them. I'm using a version of Pete's goo as per Pete Ramey's suggestions (my trimmer follows Pete and just did a workshop with him). Is the equine podiatrist just seeing problems in the hoof because that's her specialty? Or are the hoof problems a symptom of something else? But is it worth doing the X-rays anyway to see if we can see something, or even rule it out?
Hoof gurus out there, what are your thoughts? Is it worth having her feet x-rayed? Will they give us an answer, or just be a waste of money? Keep in mind it will have to be done with a portable X-ray machine since Kodak has severe anxiety and doesn't trailer her well so traveling to a vet is not feasible. Also, despite all appearances to the contrary, I do not have unlimited amounts of money to throw on this horse. If we can't ride her, that's fine, she'll likely remain here as a pasture pet since I've grown rather fond of the girl, despite everything, and I can't sell her anyway. But if we can make her more comfortable, then maybe we should... but even if we fixed this, it's likely there will be other things going on. The list is long, I'm afraid. What would you do?