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Chiropractor, Massage Therapist...who to start with?

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  • Chiropractor, Massage Therapist...who to start with?

    Let me preface by saying, my horse has a bit of fungus on her neck and I gave her a week and a half off in case she was uncomfortable from the itchy stuff... I rode her today and she was bucking in the canter. Not "playful hot" bucking, but moreso "something hurts me" type of bucking. I know her well enough, and I'm almost certain its discomfort. I got off her and lunged with dressage saddle still on (still bucked). Took off the dressage saddle (stopped bucking). Put the saddle back on (started bucking). Put on a JUMP SADDLE (stopped bucking).

    So I'm either thinking it is the dressage saddle/girth that are bothering her OR she is uncomfortable from another reason. The dressage saddle was FIT to her using a professional saddle fitter. So maybe it's the girth pinching her? Maybe she has some fungus that is under her hair, and I cant see it??

    But nonetheless, I want a professional to come out and alleviate some of the discomfort. What are my options, and who would you start with? Chiro, Massage Therapist, Miofacial something or other??

    ****A vet has seen her for the fungus. Obviously I will call the vet if the bucking/discomfort becomes a reoccuring issue, or if the chiro/massage therapist can't help me.****

  • #2
    My first thought would be your girth. I bought my filly a nice mohair girth, and it wasn't cheap, because I heard how horses love them. Well, she did not love it. However, she does like a cheaper fleece girth, go figure. So you might experiment a little there.
    I am not a fan of chiropractors, for me or horses. But I do think a massage therapist can give you a lot of useful information. She can tell you if your saddle is causing some pressure or if she just has a sore back. Could be she does, unrelated to the fit of her saddle, and the jump saddle doesn't put pressure on the sore spot. So I guess girth and then massage therapist. Good luck!

    Hell hath no fury like the chestnut thoroughbred mare


    • #3
      What exactly was the fungus and did it spread down her back?


      • #4
        How long ago was her saddle fit? My young horse has been changing so fast I've had to have the fitter out 3 times in 9 months.
        If it is saddle fit, the only fix is ...saddle fit...
        A massage will probably help pinpoint where the issue is, which could help you decide next steps. And it certainly won't hurt! I am a big fan of good chiro and acupuncture, but, like anything else, it only solves certain problems.
        I'd probably start with massage and then go for vet, chiro vet, or saddle fitter depending on what you find.
        The big man -- my lost prince

        The little brother, now my main man


        • Original Poster

          Originally posted by pheasantknoll View Post
          What exactly was the fungus and did it spread down her back?
          The vet said she thought it could be ring worm, but literally, the vet is the only one who said it looks like ring worm. We didnt culture it, we just started treating it. I'm not saying she's wrong, but it's basically just patches of missing hair with some mildly flaky skin. It is just visible on her neck, but it IS possible that its down her back but I'm unable to see it under her hair. I'm not interested in body clipping her, since it could cause the "ring worm" spores to spread throughout her body, instead of being isolated to her neck.

          The saddle fit was done in December. So it's possible the saddle doesnt fit but I highly doubt that it's the saddle...maybe the girth pinching her irritated skin?


          • #6
            Massage therapist.


            • #7
              I would start with the massage therapist. She should be able to give you an idea where your horse is tight and if you will need a chiropractic treatment.
              I find that having the massage first then the chiro will make the adjustment easier and hold better. Sometimes I will do two massage then an immediate chiro treatment.
              Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)


              • #8
                the professional who graduates LAST in their graduating class can still practice what ever profession it is that they graduated from.... just a thought, not all "professional" saddle fitters are equal, just like not all body workers.... vets.... farriers..... you get the idea just because you can pass a test does not mean you can apply what you think you know.

                Since the jump saddle caused the bucking to stop I'd venture a bet that it's something with the dressage saddle. Maybe the girth, but I'd be doubtful even of that.

                and if the horse has an active fungus, massage is possibly going to spread it around. As a Bodyworker, if you told me the horse had possible ring worm, I would tell you to call me back when it was cleared up.

                IMHO, let the fungus heal, then if the bucking continues use the vet to rule out anything physical (like more fungus you don't see) and then evaluate the saddle fit again. THEN a bodyworker if it isn't resolved. A GOOD bodyworker will give you a good idea if chiro would benefit your horse or not.
                If i'm posting on Coth, it's either raining so I can't ride or it's night time and I can't sleep.