My horse has been out of real work for nearly a year, and his back has changed dramatically.
The saddle fitter has completely reflocked his saddle, widened the gullet, and done as much as he can with the flocking. We cannot add any more flocking without making it hard, but it still needs more lift through the front and behind his shoulders.
A new saddle is not in the picture right now. He's mostly a pleasure horse and I'm fairly sure that once he gets back in shape, the saddle will fit him much better. I just need to get him comfortable so he can build up the correct muscling.
Any suggestions on padding? I need something to take up the hollows behind his shoulders and lift the pommel without drastically narrowing the fit. My fitter showed me how to fold a hand towel and place it, but horse seems to prefer a half pad with a little more cushion.
*raises hand* So my saddle was a medium wide and my TB needed a medium narrow only though the gullet and this pad was god send for us. I'm in college and on a college budget so a new saddle wasnt in the works and we had had it flocked so it fit the best it could. He was never sore and it kept the pommel off of his withers perfectly. The riser part of it is more tapered and fit right in the hollow of the withers. Excellent padding.
*two thumbs up*
--Luck is what happens when preparedness meets opportunity--
I've made foam shims before to temporarily solve such a problem. They were thicker at the top where the pommel needed to be raised and shaved down, sorta like a wedge. Since the rest of the saddle fitted pretty well, the shims were only about the size of my hand...one for either side. Worked well at the time.
it's not the edge of the earth, but you can see it from here
Yup, have used that and the Cashel "reverse" wedge for exactly what you're talking about--bringing out of work horses into codition.
You just have to really keep an eye as they develop, because if it makes the saddle tight, it will prevent the muscle from coming up and perpetuate the hollows.
I also LOVE the thinline shims, and think they are more forgiving than the Mattes shims. FWIW.
There's also a sheepskin half pad, can't remember the mfg, but there's a piece on top that velcroes where you need it, so you can make it a front lift pad. Dover used to carry, not sure if they still do. Ill try to poke around for it tonight.