Friday, August 26, 2011

With Head in Hands.

Horses are stressful.

Rode Moon today, and didn't think he was lame at all. Granted, the ground is REALLY uneven in the ring and REALLY hard with deep cracks, so a lot of the uneven movement I felt I'm pretty sure is a result of that...since I myself was stumbling as I was walking across it.

I think we're officially DONE riding in the grass ring. I'm contemplating if I can ride him in the hay field next door, which is likely less packed...

Anyway, I'm noticing a more frequently occuring problem.

Head tossing during walk-trot transitions. I mean, that's the ONLY time I get this huge head toss out of Moon, and it's almost every time now.

My thought?

My saddle. I'm about 99.9% sure that it pinches his shoulders. I tested the fit with a Wintec gullet measurer, and there is NO WAY he's a medium gullet. It showed pinching, where the medium-wide sat perfect. On a good note, the girl I borrowed the measuring device off of has a complete gullet set, and isn't using the medium-wide...hopefully I can borrow it until we get a new saddle.

Unbelievably, the same girl owns the Wintec Isabell that I'm dreaming of. Curses. And no, she won't sell.

So, I'm convinced the head tossing is more then likely bad saddle fit. Okay, fair. I'm even more convinced, since I pulled off his saddle and rode him bareback for a few laps. Not only did he move better and more forward, but he also transitioned with minimal or NO head tossing. Coincidence? Considering the last 12 transitions were bad?

Let's add in that he had a TOTAL freak-out when he came near his saddle lying on the ground in the ring. Snorting, prancing, backing, side passing. Oye. And then the fact he puts his ears back and glares at me when I girth him up...And no matter how far back I move it, it creeps forward...

I think that's one problem identified, again. And yes, I'm hunting around for the wintec, trying to find one for about $600, hopefully with a gullet kit and a girth. Keep your fingers crossed and your eyes open!

Tomorrow the farrier is coming out to trim Moon and have a look at his lameness. I was convinced that we're just dealing with some sole bruising. No biggie.

...until after our ride today.

He had a "wind puff" like lump just below his hind left hock, towards the outside of his leg. I know windpuffs don't occur in this location, but it felt IDENTICAL. Soft and squishy, like fluid. No pain, no heat, no real 'swelling'. Just a little fluid bulge.

A lot of googling has me thinking it's: a 'curb', a bog spavin or a swelling of the bursa. All can be caused by riding on rough terrain, excessive concussion or generalised injury. Seems very possible.

Tomorrow I will begin cold hosing his hock once/day for a week, and hopefully it goes away or down. Unfortunately, it was too dark to start tonight. My experience with windpuffs is that it's typically in need of reduced work, cold hosing and easying going. That's what's on the list now.

The thing that does worry me, is that when I posted the video of him lame, I said that I thought it was his hind left that was bugging him. Guess which has the swelling? Coincidence? Could it actually be more sore then I thought?

I really do wish I had access to a sand ring already, so I could ride him on a nice, soft, flat surface and see how he goes. I love T, but I am SO READY to move and start riding him on decent terrain.

Why, why, why does this stuff have to happen? Fingers crossed the farrier gives us some insight and solutions. And the puff goes down.


  1. He should be OK - and it was great that you figured out the saddle fit issue - that can be so important.

  2. I believe the lump on Moon’s leg is indeed a spavin, a Bog spavin, if it is indeed a Bog spavin then it is not very serious but it is a warning of strain and obviously it is important to be rid of it. He should have rest while it causes him discomfort, and yes you should be cold hosing it, you need to cold hose it for 20 minutes every time and should be done twice a day or more if possible. After you have finished hosing the spavin, you may want to dry his heel and put some cream on to prevent cracks. Anyway I am sure you’ll keep a good eye on him and I think you will have this all sorted in no time, oh and good luck with your search for a new saddle.