Teddy girth problems - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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Teddy girth problems

So, on to the latest in the “Teddy’s problems” series. This one concerns his girth. I rode him a lot over the winter, in a standard fake fleece girth from Dover. I didn’t notice anything until late this spring when the barn owner pointed out that his girth area looked really bad – he had lost a lot of fur and he had a gall. I think it must have gotten bad when he started shedding out.

I went about five weeks without riding him, and the fur mostly grew back, but the gall is still there (although smaller). I bought a new girth on the recommendation of the salesperson at Dover – it looked something like one of the stock photos below. It was neoprene with a large belly area, and the idea was that it would stick to him and not slide around, and distribute pressure. The first time I rode him in it, he seemed a little bothered, but it was the first time I had ridden him after his time off, so that could have been it as well. It seemed like he was sort of nipping at it, though, so I just took the whole thing off and rode him bareback a little, which went a little better. I rode him in it a few days later and he seemed OK, but not great. It seemed to me like it was pulling and pinching his skin, and a lot of fur came off.

So I went back and got this simple anatomic leather girth, which is really smooth, so I thought it would maybe slide around smoothly rather than catching and pinching, like the big one did, or rubbing, like the original fake fleece one did. I have ridden him in it twice, and he seems to really like it. BUT, I’m worried because more fur is coming off. I took these pictures after I rode him today.

Does anyone have any thoughts about this? Should I be worried? Not worried? With both the new leather girth and the neoprene one, I made sure they weren’t contacting what’s left of the gall (pictured). But if he loses this much fur after each ride, I’m afraid he’s going to get rubbed raw. Or maybe he always had this much fur rub off, and I didn't notice. Teddy has thin, sensitive skin and (in the summer) thin fur to begin with. So I am worried about continuing to ride him if he’s going to lose this much fur each time. (When I put a girth on him now, I do stretch his front legs out to try to keep the skin from getting caught underneath)
Attached Images
File Type: png dover_girth.png (2.8 KB, 75 views)
File Type: jpg fancy_girth.jpg (6.1 KB, 73 views)
File Type: jpeg Teddy_girth_2.jpeg (49.8 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpeg Teddy_girth_1.jpeg (61.7 KB, 5 views)
File Type: jpg Teddy_tum_1.jpg (38.0 KB, 6 views)
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post #2 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 06:38 PM
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I wont use neoprene girths because they are notorious for causing cinch sores. You have the start of a cinch sore with hair missing soon to get raw/bloody sore.

Out riding my horse.
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post #3 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 06:41 PM Thread Starter
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@rambo99 actually that's what he looks like now, after five weeks off and only four short rides after that. He looked a lot worse before.

If neoprene isn't a good idea, then what will help him? The leather seems smoother and not pinchy, but it still seems to be pulling his fur off.
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post #4 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 06:54 PM
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I really dislike neoprene...girth, cinch or saddle pads...just no.
Many humans are allergic to certain kinds of rubber gloves...I = this to our horses can be allergic too.

I really like mohair girths for my horses in western tack.
They do make them also for English tack, pricey but...if it makes comfy that is success to me.

The ones I've seen do not have elastic ends so be careful how tight you girth up as tight is tight...however, I find when I use mohair girths I don't need to snug as tight either and no saddle movement happens.

You could try using a fleece girth cover and see if the softer material helps but damage is done, sorry.
I would also be very careful that is not a skin infection, a form of rain rot.
Skin is so delicate that once it is irritated it is so difficult to calm those nerves and encourage regrowth of hair on the area...
You also need to try to alleviate those bumps cause every time you girth-up...irritation begins.
Gently stretching out the legs so no folds of skin getting caught under the girth might help some too...
Sometimes you need to do a gentle stretch then do a second one when the horse will also give the leg a bit further forward...
...
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post #5 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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@horselovinguy how much would you expect to pay for a true mohair girth for an English saddle? I found one that looked just like the one you pictured, on Amazon, for $36, which seems suspiciously cheap to me. I don't really trust third-party sellers on Amazon to begin with.

Also, I've been treating the black parts with Betadine just to be on the safe side. I've also increased the supplements he gets for skin and fur, and his general supps, and added one for immune function (he was losing a lot of hair on his chest the first part of spring and the vet thought it was allergies, but fortunately that's grown back in now). I'm also going to start applying a balm all over that area before we ride.

If it comes down to it, and I have to, I'll try riding him bareback. I first rode him bareback many months ago, and it was really painful due to his poor topline (at the time). When I rode him bareback last week it wasn't as bad. I actually really like riding bareback in general, but not so much when I've got someone's spine trying to drive a wedge up my youknow.
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post #6 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 08:10 PM
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Think BigD's tack had them for over a hundred less than two hundred...
Mohair is expensive...
I googled and came up with several places in prices from what you found to just under $200.
Try Dover, Stateline, Riders Warehouse....those come to mind as legit businesses.
You might find close-out pricing on new merchandise that could indeed be legit, check out the business and their ratings.


I use to use Vitamin E cream on things like that to keep the skin soft and supple after applying medicinal things that can dry.


I would try using a girth cover of either sheepskin or the fleece ones and see that combines with carefully releasing caught skin not help your issue.
...

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post #7 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 08:33 PM
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I, too, hate neoprene. It is pinchy and sweaty and rubs.

I ride western, but my choices would be mohair and/or alpaca, or wool felt. I have a hand made mohair cinch now, but used a wool felt cinch before with no concerns.

I don't know if applying a balm before riding is a good idea. I would make sure the area is clean and dry, and your girth is clean and dry before saddling. You don't really want your girth slipping and sliding -- that seems like it would cause more issues.
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post #8 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cedar & Salty View Post
I don't know if applying a balm before riding is a good idea. I would make sure the area is clean and dry, and your girth is clean and dry before saddling. You don't really want your girth slipping and sliding -- that seems like it would cause more issues.
That's part of what is confusing me. Looking online, I see some recommendations to get a smoother girth or to use something like vaseline to promote smooth movement, because smoothness means no friction means no rubs. Then on the other side are the proponents of neoprene who like it because it supposedly doesn't move, so no movement means no friction means no rubbing.

Neither Pony nor Moonshine, nor any other horse that I have ridden regularly, has ever had this problem, so I feel like I'm just throwing random things at it and hoping that something will work. I don't know, maybe that's the best I can do? Just keep trying until I find what works for him in particular? But all of the solutions I'm trying are so expensive, LOL. I don't mind paying for something that's going to help, but I have already bought two expensive girths and at least one of them is not working out. I'm strongly considering the mohair one, but of course that's another not-cheap option that might not even work.

Sorry, I don't mean to sound gripey, I am just sort of at a loss for what to do here. Teddy is a sweet boy who tries hard, and I want to do what's right by him. I just don't know what that is right now.
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post #9 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 09:18 PM
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I hear you and empathize a million times over. Salty is like Teddy -- one thing after another. Bits saddle pads, even saddles... you spend $100 to try to fix the issue, and end up with another useless item in the tack room. Some horses are just more sensitive and quirky!
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post #10 of 32 Old 06-30-2019, 10:23 PM
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Sometimes it is not "slippage" but heat retention that is the culprit.
I never honestly ever had a problem with a leather girth ever but if you get a fold of skin and subsequent pinch, well..that is the start to many issues you then play catch-up to correct and fix the problem{s}.
...

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