Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You're responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it--details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums' policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it's understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users' profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses -- Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it's related to a horse for sale, regardless of who's selling it, it doesn't belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions -- Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services -- Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products -- While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements -- Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be "bumped" excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues -- Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators' discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the �alert� button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your �Ignore� list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you'd rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user's membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Young mare issues

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Young mare issues

    Just seeing if anyone has any suggestions or has experienced anything with their mare like this:
    I have a 5 year old mare, lots of thoroughbred in her so she is very sensitive (but not hyper). When tacking up she is extremely girthy (biting and tail swishing). She also doesn't like her chest rubbed/groomed. Okay about her hind end though and udder being touched.
    Anyways, she has also had an on again, off again issue with riding when you put your leg on her. She wasn't broke until 4 (and was sent to a professional to start her for 3 months because of the leg issues). When you put your leg on her she gets upset, sucks back, swishes her tail and kicks out. She usually works out of it after warming her up (10 minutes or so of riding). Worse gait is the canter...she will kick out every stride for a bit.
    I've had 2 suggestions..."girl" problems (she has very expressive heat cycles and her last heat cycle a few weeks ago she actually rubbed her back end every evening in turnout on various things and actually cut her legs, sides, rear, and udder up with rubbing). Second is ulcers. I don't know much about either (my other horse is an older gelding and I haven't had a mare for over 10 years). The ulcers just seem a little odd to me as she is only like this for girthing and riding...fine in her stall and eating and such.
    I'm stuck as to what to do as I don't want to keep throwing money in "searching" for the problem. For both hormones and ulcers the medications are very expensive as I'd also like to know if anyone has experienced this type of bahaviors in their mares, what they have put them on to try to help?
    Thanks in advance!

    I have heard that some mares really get bitchy and nasty when the hormones fluxuate.


      Original Poster

      haha...she definitely does!
      anyone ever use any of the mare type supplements and have success (or ones that don't work)? I think I've seen a few in the catalogs that claim to help relieve their hormonal issues (not regumate...the feed supplements).
      I still don't know if that's her issue but might be worth trying it to see...


        Well, it may get better with age-or pregnancy!


          Why don't you try and get her used to pressure on the ground? Keep grooming her even if she dances around, try to find her favourite itchy spots to groom at the same time. Get her used to moving over from pressure, leading, halting and backing up. The female hormones only make them more sensitive and over reactive but it doesn't change their basic personality. And she can't be cycling all the time, so she must have better days than worse ones. You say she's green, was started at 4 and is now 5. Maybe start from scratch and treat her like an unstarted horse, going over all the basics. Perhaps she has only experiencing a saddle hitting her back hard and being tightened up all the way. You could do a lot on the ground to desensitize her before you decide to go for supplements and medication to try to sort her out.


            Original Poster

            She's actually had an extensive amount of groundwork (even went to an evaluation by Monty and she was an angel with everything...even surprised the heck out me how desensitzed she was! haha). She likes grooming and such...and she is getting worked with desensitizing her chest area (always had issues there...but also has areas/scars there from before I bought her where she's rubbed so might be a long term old issue?). No issues anymore (note I say anymore...when I first got her she used to kick and bite and hated touching but now likes most of it) and she is fine to work with her girth area without tack and's just the girth tightening, doesn't dance around but just makes nasty faces, bites, tail swishing. I'm not as concerned about this though as I am about the kicking out when riding.
            It is just weird that it is such an on and off thing...she can go for weeks without doing it then just start it again (as what happened last week) for no apparant reason, which is why I was thinking hormone related as it conincided with the end of her heat? I did try regumate for 3 months, but unfortunately she first had a cut leg then a big hoof abcess so she wasn't able to be I couldn't tell if it helped. I only could do the 3 months worth at the time due to the expense...which is why I thought I'd see if anyone here has mares with the same issue that have found anything else that worked without being so expensive.
            LOL @ pfb...that was actually one of the first things I said was maybe she needs to get knocked up!


              As it sounds like it's an all the time thing, highly doubtful it's hormones.

              Have you had her checked for, or treated for, ulcers? What is her diet? One poster here has good luck feeding a pound or so of alfalfa pellets right before riding, for this issue.

              Or, she just might have your number
              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                Original Poster

                Started her today on a week of ulcer treatment (gastrogard) today. She did have a month round of the ulcergard a while back but it was during one of her non-bit@hy times so I don't know if it helped, we had done it on a trainer's suggestion for weight gain. Might be ulcers though as it during the ulcergard time she was also on alfalfa hay too mixed with her t/a/orchard hay. She's been off the alfalfa and ulcergard for 1 1/2 months now since she moved to a new barn so perhaps it is just the timing and an ulcer is acting up? Weird though that she's fine in her stall/turnout/eating/etc. and everyone says they act up all the time with the ulcers? But I guess every horse might be different.
                My vet did suggest the alfalfa and possibly scoping her to see if it's an ulcer. Just not really ready to shell out the money for scoping yet. ugh..these horses and their issues! lol
                She might just have our number as well though...hahaha. She is really smart!


                  Re: the expense of will probably be able to tell after the week of gastroguard whether it's helping or not and may be able to skip the scoping, though she may still *expect* certain things to be uncomfortable for a bit longer. I now use ranitidine as daily treatment for my ulcer-prone mare and just use ulcer/gastroguard for shipping, shows, etc.

                  Mare also gets something in her stomach--alfalfa or even just grass hay--before riding.

                  For the record, my mare's ulcer symptoms match your mare's symptoms pretty exactly. I've had her almost 10 years and can tell if her meds need to be increased by the degree of crankiness about having her chest curried and girth tightened!

                  ETA: I think every horse's reaction to ulcers is a bit different. Some may act differently all the time, others seem extremely stoic and can't tell until scoped.

                  "When tacking up she is extremely girthy (biting and tail swishing). She also doesn't like her chest rubbed/groomed. Okay about her hind end though and udder being touched.
                  Anyways, she has also had an on again, off again issue with riding when you put your leg on her. ... When you put your leg on her she gets upset, sucks back, swishes her tail and kicks out. ... Worse gait is the canter...she will kick out every stride for a bit."
                  Custom and semi-custom washable wool felt saddle pads!


                    Original Poster

                    Hmmm...interesting. I'm now leaning more towards the ulcers so we'll see if the gastrogard helps this week. She is also not getting the alfalfa hay so I'm going to go get some more and put her back on that too (and try the before you ride feeding).


                      Original Poster

                      Update (since I've seen a few other threads about mares here recently).
                      Tried the hay/hay cubes before riding and absolutely no change. I think they also gave her some of the ulcergard (or like it) and it didn't do anything either. The more it went on the less it seemed to be ulcers as she was only over-reacting when girthing and then the worst was when riding, mostly at the beginning.

                      So, next step was the chiropractor as one thing that I've noticed for a long time now is that her one hip seemed lower than the other...never lame but just not even when you look at her from behind. Chiropractor came out tonight and her pelvis was torqued, and the worst/sorest spot is where the back part of the saddle sits. I guess with a torqued pelvis it makes everything out of wack. So...we'll see if this helps!


                        I had both my mares sewn/Caslicks . This has helped with their heats and not suck in air while riding, etc. It really helps, but takes a while to see results. I am sure this is not the cause of your mare's whole problem, but may help with one.


                          This is EXACTLY how my mare displayed. She is navicular, among other things, and has a lot of problems in her feet. This went on for about a year before we were able to pinpoint it, and I wish we had caught it earlier and were dealing with a lot less damage.

                          Ulcers and hormones were the first two ideas. She was scoped and had an ulcer, but treatment with gastrogard did nothing for her kicking/balking, although she gained weight afterwards. Regumate didn't help the it either, although it calmed her down a little.
                          You can try a week of Ulcergard and some Regumate to rule those issues out.

                          I would definitely get radiographs of your mare's feet. There was a thread recently about soreness in the girth area, and it is very commonly seen with sore feet due to the bracing and restricted movement.

                          How are her feet? Does she have low heels or any problems that may point to pain?

                          On a side note, does anyone know whether you can do hoof blocks and then ride as a diagnostic test? My mare was not consistently lame for at least 6 months after the start of her behavioral changes, and I wonder if that would be able to help pinpoint foot pain in a horse in the early stages.


                            Original Poster

                            She actually has great until she was 4 1/2 and then only plain fronts as she was starting to work. She did have to have hinds put on a couple shoings ago as she had a sand crack, that led to a huge abcess blow out on her hind toe and as it was growing out the crack was splitting up to the blown out abcess part (if that sentence makes sense! haha). So hopefully after another couple shoings it will be grown out and we can pull the hinds again.
                            Defiitely something to keep in mind though if not for my mare, for others.


                              Original Poster

                              Okay...not to drag up an old thread but thought I'd post an update for anyone else who might have experienced the same issues as my mare had (note I said "had"!)
                              So...over the past couple months she got worse and worse under saddle to the point where she would kick out, buck, then stop and rear and literally throw a huge temper tantrum. Hmmm...thought it might be pain so we gave her a few weeks off. Also appeared like it might be mental as it happened in the same spot(s) in the ring, usually in the corners but that was also where you would start to use your leg/seat/etc. to cue her to turn. Decided after a couple weeks rest (in case it was soreness) to have a rider who had ridden her months before all this started get on her (with the saddle she used to use with no issues) and what do you know...still threw the tantrum! decided to have the vet come do a full going over with lameness exam. Oh, one other note we also had a new farrier come out and fix a few areas that were off in her feet but nothing major, which did help a little with her movement and eliminated one issue she had for a few months of knocking her ankles behind and forging but it didn't solve her bucking/rearing issue. Also had the dentist come do a routine on her as well but nothing significant there.

                              Before anything the vet's first question was had I ever tried depo. Nope. So she went over her thoroughly (note she is also an acupuncturist so she literally ran her hands over her entire body to note issue areas as well as a complete lameness/flexion/lunging/etc.). Absolutely nothing wrong with her (she was sensitive more on her left girth area so might be the cause for her girthiness). This vet had also seen her when I first got her and remarked how she actually thought her manners throughout the exam and her attitude was much better as she had not had a lot of handling when I first got her.
                              So, in the end she first told me she was super smart and to try to mix up her riding with jumping/poles/trails/etc as lately the dressage was being concentrated on and a lot of it seemed to be temper tantrums.
                              Second, we started her on depo that day. This was 2 weeks ago...WHAT A DIFFERENCE!!! You can put your leg on her now, she hasn't reared since or bucked, only a few of the kick-outs but they were legit (one tripping and it was her reaction and a few due to confusion but not temper tantrums or pain-like). So, it seems like the hormones were a huge factor in all the issues this mare has been having. Definitely not saying this is all mares' issues but thought I'd share a hopefully happy ending to my mare's issues.


                                Good for you! My mare just turned 7, I also put her on depo as a 5 yo... this winter I took her off and she was much better than pre-depo mare. I will start back up in the summer for sure!
                                Welcome to my dressage world


                                  I'm glad you figured it out! I have an ottb mare who is a lot like this- but add on a layer of general insecurity around horses- her personal space bubble is HUGE. She seems to be a nasty mare- but if you really watch her- she's insecure around other horses.

                                  Last year in addition to the numerous tests, we tried regumate, chrio, gastroguard, herbal this-and-that, lo carb to no grain, extensive teeth workup, farrier work- shoes, barefoot, special shoes- you name it, no change in her.

                                  Then I had a colt starter work with her- and after a couple of interesting sessions, she figured out that the only answer was forward, and she quit doing the really dangerous stuff.

                                  She had a couple of months off over the winter, but just started back this week. Her rider says she tried some funny business, but gave it up fast.

                                  She still isn't friendly with other horses. Only sometimes- for brief moments. otherwise, she's absolutely sure to posture at them and show them she cannot and will not be messed with.

                                  In observing her, though, I think I am going to explore some allergy testing, and I think I am seeing a bit of headshaking- especially when she feels pressured- which can either be a horse coming up to her fence, or being asked to do something by a human.

                                  We will see what spring brings. This time last year she was a gem, she only started getting really bad in April.

                                  I'm confident we'll figure her out. When she's tuned in, she's an amazing mount. When she's not- well, look out! I really want to help her, it may just take some time to figure her out.

                                  Good luck to everyone in these situations- and post your findings- you never know who you'll be helping!
                                  My blog: Change of Pace - Retraining a standardbred via dressage


                                    Original Poster

                                    Good luck with figuring out your mare as well! frustrating.
                                    You mentioned you had tried regumate..did you ever try the depo? I had also had my mare on regumate for over 3 months but didn't notice it changing anything (but was hard to tell as she was off work at the time due to hoof abcess and then a dose or two were skipped by boarding barn as she went into heat, doh!).
                                    It's funny you also mention the colt starter...the trainer who broke my mare did a lot of groundwork/roundpen/etc. and their main focus was getting her to stay forward as well. I should have picked up way back then when he said he thought she might be super sensitive with "girly" issues and hormones...even told me about marbles but at the time it wasn't so bad..she was younger and hadn't been out with other horses. I think as she was exposed and turned out with more horses, and matured in age a little, it caused her behavioral/physical issues to get worse.
                                    So far over 2 weeks into the first depo shot and she's still great!!! My friend who hadn't seen her in a few months (and was there when she started to get really bad) saw her this weekend and said she just seemed more relaxed, and just a nicer horse to be around.
                                    Crossing fingers it just gets better and better from here!


                                      Interesting about the regumate not working for your mare either. I'm going to talk to my vet about the depo shot.

                                      For whatever reason, she seems to be ok with being paddocked next to my 3 yr old standardbred. He's so relaxed and dopey and young he doesn't really react to her. She's since dropped the posturing at him over the fence, and has taking to standing next to him and even nuzzling with him a bit.

                                      Who knows, that can change in an instant, but I am kind of relieved to see that she made a friend over the fence, LOL.

                                      I have a young horse starter riding her 3x a week right now too- and he said the first day she had a lot of bad ideas, but that now she's doing well. I'm going to try to catch one of their rides this week, and maybe bring her new found friend in the arena while she's working to see if she can be worked through the probable antics.

                                      There is hope for her- at least between the months of December and March! LOL
                                      My blog: Change of Pace - Retraining a standardbred via dressage


                                        KW-thanks for posting an update. I have a mare with the same chest sensitivity issue, and apparent "girlie" problems. My girl is still fine under saddle, but is clearly the alpha mare of her pack, and makes the UGLIEST faces at her neighbors (both mares) when in her stall. We went the ulcer route too, nothing changed temperament wise, but she did gain weight.

                                        We are just starting her on regumate to see if we can keep her happier, but I'm really interested to read your stuff about depo. Currently the plan is to try regumate for 60-90 days, see the effect and then discuss depo. Thanks again for coming back to update with your results!!!!