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Serious question on lame horse- driving question- please read!

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  • Serious question on lame horse- driving question- please read!

    I can't go into too much detail on this at the moment but as I know very little (ok nothing) on driving horses I thought I would put this out to you 'experts' out there and see what you came up with.

    Scenario: Two carriage horses of differing sizes, one approx 15hh and one maybe 15.2-15.3 (larger horse is also more draft like, smaller horse more QH like). Larger horse is younger, has a tendancy to 'bounce' up and down in the harness when stopped (small rears, lunges forward etc etc). Smaller horse is solid.

    Smaller horse shows clear lameness on the right fore leg (smaller horse is on the left side of the pair) BUT only at the walk, not at the trot (or at least much harder to see at the trot if it is there)

    Theories? I was wondering if the larger horse, at the trot, may take the brunt of the weight and 'pull' the other horse along making it look sounder then it is?

    Perhaps at the walk the smaller, steadier horse is taking more of the weight?

    Any ideas?

    Thanks
    I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

  • #2
    I'm not sure what you're actually wanting to know in posing these questions.

    if you are asking:

    If 2 horses are working how do you tell they're sharing equal work: In which case the only way you would know whether they're taking their equal share of weight is to look at the traces. And personally speaking I'd be somewhat surprised if the lame horse wasn't hanging back (because it most likely would if it had any sense.)

    Then it sounds to me like there's considerable variation in size and type. From what you say, I'd be amazed if you could get them to work together properly as a pair and even if both were sound. Don't forget that with a pair of horses, they should do equal work and match each other for stride and pace. With the difference you describe, how is that possible?

    or

    If you're asking:

    If this is a way of working a lame horse. In which case the answer is No, not in my opinion. If a horse is lame its because its in pain. Its not right nor proper to have it trotting and being pulled along by another larger horse when its lame. Its detrimental and you'll make it worse. If its lame the cause of the lameness needs to be fully investigated and remedied before the horse is worked in harness or under saddle.

    Likewise are you saying that these horses are already working as a pair? Because again I think horses should be working well as singles prior to being put to harness as a pair and it sounds to me like here are 2 with problems that are going to impact on each other. I'm not convinced I'd want them as a pair in any event even if both were sound: at least not until I'd stopped the bouncing and rearing etc.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by JackSprats Mom View Post
      I can't go into too much detail on this at the moment but as I know very little (ok nothing) on driving horses I thought I would put this out to you 'experts' out there and see what you came up with.

      Scenario: Two carriage horses of differing sizes, one approx 15hh and one maybe 15.2-15.3 (larger horse is also more draft like, smaller horse more QH like). Larger horse is younger, has a tendancy to 'bounce' up and down in the harness when stopped (small rears, lunges forward etc etc). Smaller horse is solid.

      Smaller horse shows clear lameness on the right fore leg (smaller horse is on the left side of the pair) BUT only at the walk, not at the trot (or at least much harder to see at the trot if it is there)

      Theories? I was wondering if the larger horse, at the trot, may take the brunt of the weight and 'pull' the other horse along making it look sounder then it is?

      Perhaps at the walk the smaller, steadier horse is taking more of the weight?

      Any ideas?

      Thanks
      I'm glad Thomas answered first, because I was having a hard time figuring out what exactly is going on here.

      My first response is, why is anyone working a lame horse?

      My second is, I suspect this is something you've observed that is worrying you, not something you are doing yourself. My "read" is that you've spoken to the person who is working these two horses, and they've pointed out that the horse is only lame in walk and therefore it's okay to drive him. So you're trying to figure out why he is not showing up lame in trot. Am I correct?

      The simple answer, of course, is to trot the horse up in hand and observe his way of going. But as I believe these are not your horses, that may not be an option.

      I've puzzled over a few theories about why the lameness is more pronounced in walk. Nothing really clear occurs, but I'll have a go:

      Option A: The horses are badly mismatched, and as the sound horse is larger and stronger, he is setting the pace. His walking pace is such that the lame horse can't "protect" himself by adjusting how he moves his legs -- he has to just tromp along, and it hurts. The trotting pace is more to the smaller horse's advantage.

      Option B: The lameness is in the shoulder and the work in walk is throwing the horse into the collar more forcefully than does the work in trot.

      It certainly is an odd situation. I suspect the owner is trying to use the older, steadier horse to train the young bouncy one, hence the mismatched pair and apparently premature driving for the young one.

      I'm sure other people will have more coherent answers for you!

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm sure other people will have more coherent answers for you!
        I doubt it! Its New Years Day!!

        The whiskey was plentiful last night

        HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU AND YOURS

        Comment


        • #5
          You too, Thomas!

          As midnight approached last night I was giving the horses a belated hay feed (we'd been at a neighbor's earlier), and giving thanks. My gratitude extended to the people on this board, who've become very much an extended family for me. To all of you, the very best of new years.

          Comment


          • #6
            Thomas and Dale have given some good responses and I've not much to add other than WHY??? These two horses sound very mis-matched and it well could be THAT is contributing to the lameness.

            I'd definitely want to see the horse with the suspected lameness in-hand. If he appears OK then I'd want to see him driven singly.

            The way you describe the 'bouncy' one reminds me of my pony with a brakeless vehicle when she's in heat: she doesn't like the breeching hitting her! Maybe this horse resents the breeching too? If that's the case he needs some serious re-training. And again, he should be driven singly until he knows his job.

            I agree with Dale in that it sounds as if these are not your horses. Sure hope you can get the owner to address the situation before the poor horse suffers much more.

            Happy New Year to all of you, too! I had a PPS crash and slept right through it... for 16 hours straight. So much for the fun we had planned....
            Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

            PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
            Ashemont2@gmail.com

            Comment


            • #7
              It is possible to offset the evener a little to make up the size difference. On my doubletrees I have 3 holes on each end 1/2" apart. It doesn't take much of and offset to give a horse an advantage. Like a teeter totter where the skinny kid gets a little longer lever.

              That said it won't allow you to make a pair out of mismatched horses but you could if you needed to get work done. Two to 3 inches is not a big deal to the plow but makes a difference in the show ring.

              The lameness issues have been discussed and I won't repeat what has been said.

              LF
              Lostfarming in Idaho
              http://i512.photobucket.com/albums/t...etPleasure.jpg

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Sorry guys I'll try to be cleaer.

                First off NOT my horses (I don't drive).

                Second I guess my question was, why would the lameness be so pronounced at the walk and not at the trot? As I'm unfamiliar with how horses work in harness I was curious as to whether this would affect how the lameness would show itself.

                Due to the location and safety the lame horse could not be pulled out of harness to be trotted up in hand or flexed etc.

                Option B: The lameness is in the shoulder and the work in walk is throwing the horse into the collar more forcefully than does the work in trot.
                This may well be the case, could you elaborate a little on why there is less pressure in the collar at the trot?

                Thanks

                Oh and the reason the horse is being driven is that the owner does not believe that the horse is lame.
                I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm going to try to answer your question, but please understand that this is based on my observation only and is possibly going to be countered by a more technical reply.

                  I've noticed that Sparrow has a particular trotting rate at which inertia becomes her friend and she is just moving along ahead of the cart, with minimal pressure in the breastcollar. I've watched her work to achieve this floating state. She doesn't want to fall out of draught, because she has learned that there's a "snatch" when she must once again take up the weight. But at the perfect rate for slope, carriage and road surface, she can keep it so that she feathers into and out of draught, and she's happy as a bird. She can't achieve this state in either canter or walk, because canter seems to produce repeated snatches (though she quite likes canter) and the forward inertia just doesn't seem to be there in walk.

                  So in trot, it's possible that the little lame horse is able to keep little to no pressure in the breast collar, letting his bumptious big partner pull the freight.

                  How frustrating that the owner can't see the lameness and won't respond to reasoned concern. Good on you for trying!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    A lot of the time when a horse is in harness (dependent on the terrain), its not actually in draft. The horse is "floating" in the neutral position with neither the collar nor breaching in action.

                    When a horse is in a pair its entirely possible to have one horse doing all the work and one horse doing nothing. IF the limp comes from pain on pressure where the collar is on the shoulder then if the pressure is removed its might be possible for the horse not to have pain and therefore not to limp.

                    However I personally find it quite difficult to imagine that a horse lame at walk is going to be sound at trot (even assuming its pain on pressure) and rather I'm thinking that its just not being noticed so much by the observer.

                    Do you have a video clip of the horse at walk and at trot?

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      However I personally find it quite difficult to imagine that a horse lame at walk is going to be sound at trot (even assuming its pain on pressure) and rather I'm thinking that its just not being noticed so much by the observer.
                      I agree, I am pretty sure that the horse is probably lame at the trot too but due to being in a downtown situation with heavy vehicle and foot traffic viewing wasn't ideal for that. The walk was easier to view and more pronounced.

                      Yes, I have video of it but am not going to post it on a public forum for legal reasons.

                      My thanks for your clearer explanaintion of the how's and why's as I was unaware of the 'drafting' effect.
                      I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        you can email it to me if you want.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yes. Go through TinyVid (I think that's the name) and email it to those of us who have tried to help. We would like to see for ourselves what's going on, and maybe could give better responses.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            I will try and do that but please understand, that as this may be criminal I do not want the video posted on a public forum.

                            Also the video is not of great quality.

                            Thanks
                            I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JackSprats Mom View Post
                              I will try and do that but please understand, that as this may be criminal I do not want the video posted on a public forum.

                              Also the video is not of great quality.

                              Thanks
                              Fair enough, I respect your concern. I don't know much about this kind of stuff, but could you blot out the face of the driver somehow?

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by JackSprats Mom View Post
                                I will try and do that but please understand, that as this may be criminal I do not want the video posted on a public forum.

                                Also the video is not of great quality.

                                Thanks
                                Free legal advice coming up............(not from me but from someone who knows!)

                                If its your video film that you took then there's nothing wrong with posting it. If its someone else's photo of video then you would be in breach of copyright.

                                Tresspass is illegal photography is not.

                                If its film that you took then at law if you can be there, you can take pictures there: streets, car-parks, office buildings, etc etc. You do not need permission to do so, even on private property.

                                If a property owner demands you leave, you must. But if a place is open to the public e.g. a street or car-park or commercial premises then permission to be there and to take photos is assumed at law.

                                A photograph of video may be illegal if its violated someone's privacy: so telephoto lenses taken into someone's private premises or where there's a right to privacy: e.g. a film star in a private garden sunbathing topless

                                If its showing something private or offensive and not newsworthy: e.g. a photograph of someone attending a clinic for sexually transmitted disease or picking up drugs for cancer treatment.

                                If its misrepresenting or used to misrepresent: So it its edited and out of context or specifically used out of context to lay false or libellous claim.

                                So if you can see it, you can photograph or video it. If it requires extraordinary means to see e.g., using a specialist telephoto lens, or trespassing on property not open to the public, then you may not be able to photograph it legally.

                                Then can you publish: A photograph or videotape by itself will not at law place a subject in a false light. Rather, the accompanying text, caption, or voice-over could be misleading and portray the person in a false context. However, an accurate depiction of a person in a publication the person finds offensive does not, in itself, state a false light claim and is not illegal.

                                Permissable: Videoing a horse drawn carriage as it passes by.

                                Permissable: Publishing those videos or photos

                                This is legal. No expectation of privacy and no libel.

                                Having said that I will respect your privacy and not publish it without your permission as its your video and photo and to so do would put me in breach of copyright

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Thomas- trust me I'm very familiar with the law It still stands that due to possible charges I don't want the water muddied by on line input. So while its not illegal to do it, I wouldn't say its a smart thing to do either.

                                  I have to work out how to send it to you after I edit it down
                                  I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    to my email address: carriage@freeuk.com

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      and mine:
                                      windchild.farm@yahoo.com

                                      Comment

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