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Horse Won't Turn Right ONLY Undersaddle - A Little More Info Post 87

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  • Horse Won't Turn Right ONLY Undersaddle - A Little More Info Post 87

    Let me preface this by saying HI everyone! And I've been great, just heavily into the farm, horses, kids and a great part-time NPO job I took on over the summer. Life is good but there has been no time for COTH.

    Anyway, on to the interesting stuff five year old gelding, was very difficult to start which was a red flag for me. Finally got him going undersaddle. Horse did not like to step off to the right. Was diagnosed with Lyme, treated, improved somewhat, issue still lingered. Issue has slowly become bigger, to the point where he now refuses to turn right - ONLY undersaddle. He longes right, line drives right, turns his head right freely at any other time. Checks out with chiro, dentist and vet.

    None of the normal things I would suspect, such as teeth, neck, poll, saddle, front end lameness have shown anything even vaguely suspicious. It appears that the problem is only when he has weight on his back I am reluctant to just scan this horse if that is true, because I cant ride him in a MRI LOL!

    My other suspicions are kissing spine, shoulder OCD, wither damage... Any other ideas and how to eliminate things so as to narrow down where to look? I believe this is physical, and now has an added mental component, poor guy. I will check back here as often as I can and appreciate any ideas. Thanks!
    Last edited by EqTrainer; Nov. 27, 2012, 06:21 PM.
    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
    ---
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

  • #2
    I had a slightly similar situation. My horse was reluctant to put in a good right circle or pick up his right lead. He checked out sound, teeth done regularly, negative for Lyme, saddle fit, etc etc. I ended up thinking it was a training issue (I was young, stupid, and didn't bother to fully investigate) and worked him until he started showing up lame. What was interesting about his lameness is that he would be .5 to maybe a 1 lungeing or in hand, flexed ok, didn't block out anywhere on a lameness exam, etc. He was a solid 4 under saddle though, within one lap around the ring he would barely put weight on his RF. The local vet was stumped, as x-rays showed nothing (and we x-rayed all 4 legs up to his knees/hocks, most the vet seemed to find was a little hock arthritis). Finally took him to a large clinic and did Infrared on him? I think? Sorry it was a while ago, but basically scanned for heat/inflammation in his body. The vet found that his front feet were inflamed inside the hoof capsule, even though the horse did not present as hoof sore, didn't respond to hoof testers, etc. So the vet looks at his x-rays and sees that the horse is caudally rotated several degrees in his p3. We started trimming him in relation to his x-rays and he was sound within a few weeks, much more comfortable picking up his right lead and turning right. It really was like night and day.

    Sorry if my story isn't much help, it's just one more thing you might want to consider...
    come what may

    Rest in peace great mare, 1987-2013

    Comment


    • #3
      From your description, my first thoughts would be kissing spine and imbalance in the front feet- possibly something like a fractured sidebone that could show only when asked to bear weight on one side of the foot more than the other.

      Comment


      • #4
        I'd xray the feet and also get a second opinion to make sure he is balanced in his hooves. Also I'd look into epm, could still be a neuro issue presenting. Kissing spine possibly, but does he have any other issues under saddle? Does he buck, crow hop, refuse to go forward or slowly go forward?
        Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

        Comment


        • #5
          How long did you treat for Lyme? Did you retest after you treated? My horse was diagnosed and treated for Lyme for 30 days. He improved somewhat, but not really. When we retested, his titre went up. While no two Lyme cases are the same, his story is somewhat parallel to your horse's, including most of his symptoms manifesting under saddle.

          Comment


          • #6
            My first thought was a rib out of place, any chance the chiro may have missed that? Have you tried lunging him with tack on? That was how we found out my filly had a rib out. She too was also only having a problem under saddle.
            McDowell Racing Stables

            Home Away From Home

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Laurie, my first thought also was a rib and quite frankly I was sure it would be.. But no and he moves forward freely on the longe to the right, in full tack, even with a one or two sidereins on. It really seems weight bearing in another way
              "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
              ---
              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

              Comment


              • #8
                Any difference bareback? What about with a bareback pad?
                Flip a coin. It's not what side lands that matters, but what side you were hoping for when the coin was still in the air.

                You call it boxed wine. I call it carboardeaux.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by rabicon View Post
                  I'd xray the feet and also get a second opinion to make sure he is balanced in his hooves. Also I'd look into epm, could still be a neuro issue presenting. Kissing spine possibly, but does he have any other issues under saddle? Does he buck, crow hop, refuse to go forward or slowly go forward?

                  He has in the past he was a very difficult horse to start. Unfortunately it coincided with an overall difficult nature and so when nothing came up in a rudimentary vet exam to explain it, we forged on.

                  Kissing spine has been on the top of my list for a while.
                  "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                  ---
                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by jen-s View Post
                    Any difference bareback? What about with a bareback pad?
                    Great idea but I dont think you could pay someone enough to try it however trying different saddles is on the agenda.
                    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                    ---
                    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I had a simular problem ...but horse would not turn left at the canter. We did an ultrasound on his hind fetlocks which showed tearing. He had to be retired after that but was in his late teens at the time. Hope you have better luck!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Have you longed him with rider in tack? I doubt it's purely an evasion but it's good to minimize variables while you're diagnosing.

                        I had a mare with trigeminal neuralgia who had funny symptoms, though not exactly similar to yours. Any early signs of dsld/espa? Sorry I don't have anything more helpful. I mostly chimed in to say I cant believe no zoolander reference has been made yet. :-)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I just got back from an equine clinic with a friends horse. He is having a bone scan tomorrow. Vet was telling how he does heads now because he's had two horses with this same problem. They both had hot teeth that would never have been found otherwise. They too had been looked at by very good equine dentists but the problem had not been found. Both horses would not turn one direction when bridled. They were scanned, thinking there was a lameness issue, but was a tooth problem. Once the tooth was fixed, they were great.
                          Lilykoi


                          Hell hath no fury like the chestnut thoroughbred mare

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Lilykoi View Post
                            They were scanned, thinking there was a lameness issue, but was a tooth problem. Once the tooth was fixed, they were great.
                            I had thought of suggesting a second opinion on the mouth but I hate to sound like the proverbial broken record. Never underestimate the importance of well floated teeth!
                            Last edited by Toothgrinder; Nov. 9, 2012, 04:58 PM. Reason: spelling
                            http://www.traditionalequinedentistry.com/

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Excellent question - does he longe well with a rider on him? Yes, he does... But the horse longes so very well that I worry that he is just being submissive and going along with the program. other variables being that there is no leg or rein aid when he is being longed, and it is the aid(s) that begin the downard spiral.

                              Teeth - oh how I wish it were teeth! And if he gets scanned I will request his head be done too - but he has had excellent dental care since he was a baby, has a very routine mouth checked every six months and allows all the bit/rein aids to be used, happily, as long as no one is sitting on him...
                              "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                              ---
                              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Just a thought. Try riding to the right with your reins in your right hand at posting trot. Reach out with your left hand and rhymically pat your horse down on the right shoulder with your left hand, straightening up after each pat. Do this in the trot rythm (sp), allowing your seat to turn to the right as you do. Don't worry about your upper body as this is just an exercise to train your body to have a "spiral seat". Each time you reach across with your left hand allow your whole seat to turn to the right. I am sure you are a good rider. I am too, but my body tends to ride a left bend no matter which way I am going. I am crooked both on and off a horse. We are all to different degrees. I do this exercise myself when I am having an issue and it fixes it pronto. It works on everyone I teach also. I'd love to have feedback after you try it. Good Luck.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Will he turn to the right on a loose rein without any aids other than the rein aid? No leg no seat, nothing at all? Pull the right rein out wide and see what he does. Will he follow the rein at all? It makes me wonder since he goes under saddle with rider in the lunge fine with no aids. Let's try to break it down from there. You know with no aids he is fine. Try just the rein aid to see if he will turn off the rein. If he does maybe there is something such as ulcers or something going on on his left side. Try then to turn him just off seat and leg. No rein. Do it at the walk and see. If he will turn with seat and leg and no rein id look in his mouth more and in his neck. If he still doesn't turn with this trial I'd be back at maybe kissing spine or neuro issues.
                                  Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    On that note, have you tried a really light rider, such as, say, LMEqT? Assuming it's safe, of course
                                    ______________________________
                                    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Can you elaborate on "difficult to start", what sort of things did he do to make him so difficult? Also, when you say he "won't turn right", what *exactly* does he do, how does he evade/ignore/insert your word here lol the turning aid? I do like the idea of a lighter rider or maybe a different saddle....

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by SAcres View Post
                                        ... Finally took him to a large clinic and did Infrared on him? I think? Sorry it was a while ago, but basically scanned for heat/inflammation in his body. The vet found that his front feet were inflamed inside the hoof capsule, even though the horse did not present as hoof sore, didn't respond to hoof testers, etc. So the vet looks at his x-rays and sees that the horse is caudally rotated several degrees in his p3. We started trimming him in relation to his x-rays and he was sound within a few weeks, much more comfortable picking up his right lead and turning right. It really was like night and day.
                                        It's interesting to me because this is basically what happened with my mare. She sometimes didn't want to take a right lead canter, especially landing over a jump (makes sense if she would have been landing on her right front, which is the affected hoof. She's still on hand walking but is doing much better since she got her new shoes. And the vet's calling it laminitis...
                                        You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                                        1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"

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