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Saddle type for a mustang

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  • Saddle type for a mustang

    So, I'm starting to think about fixin' to look at possibly getting a western saddle. I know what I really, really want...a Circle Y Topeka flex tree: http://www.valleyvet.com/ct_detail.h...5-87657cf1273f

    However...the current trail horse is a 14.3-ish Spanish Mustang. He has a massive front end and a shortish back. Will this saddle work on him with the double skirt, or should I be looking at more of an arab or other style?

    FWIW, I ride in a 16" western saddle.
    Pic of the hairy beast: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...type=3&theater
    "In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has widely been considered as a bad move." -Douglas Adams

  • #2
    I've got a mare built similar to your Mustang and I found that saddles with longer, square skirts just didn't quite fit her right. Shorter round skirts seem to suit her better. For what you'd be spending on that Circle Y you could have a custom saddle made for her which is the route I went. I ordered from Dixieland Saddlery and they offer flex-trees if that is what you are wanting.

    http://www.dixielandgaitedsaddles.co...FQRnOgodEWsAfg

    I ordered 3 custom saddles from them for 3 very different horses. Each one fit like a glove, is super comfortable, great quality and cost less than that Circle Y you linked even with all the bells and whistles. Customer service was excellent too, overall I had a great experience ordering from them and am very pleased with their quality.

    If you're going to go with an off-the-rack saddles I'd suggest trying out a few different types before spending that kind of money to get an idea of what's going to be a good fit. IME horses built like that can be a little tricky to get a good fit on, make sure what you're buying is going to work before dropping that kind of money on a saddle.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yeah, I think you'll need round skirts, or maybe a wide Aussie saddle.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Thank you! I will alter my search accordingly.
        And ThreeFigs, that page had me drooling. Definitely something to consider.
        "In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has widely been considered as a bad move." -Douglas Adams

        Comment


        • #5
          Here is one of my Dixieland saddles, it fits my short-backed horse fantastically.

          http://i786.photobucket.com/albums/y...s122/014-1.jpg

          They even custom-sized the breast collar for my horse since most standard sizes are too big for him, plus they added all the d-rings and coachman's loops a trail rider could ever want. I got the saddle, matching rear girth, matching breast collar, bridle, reins, crupper and saddle bags all for about the price of that new Circle Y. Everything is stamped to match the saddle, the leather is incredibly nice and honestly it's a nicest saddle I've ever owned. Comfortable to ride in is an understatement, my butt just melts in it even on the long rides. The other two saddles I had made by them are just as well-made and beautiful. I can't recommend them enough. They are a little heavy but one of the saddles I ordered has their butterfly skirt and is considerably lighter so that's always an option if you decide to check into them and want a lighter saddle.

          They also sell wool pads which are quite nice too. Quality right on par with 5 Star pads. I've got both and honestly can't tell the difference between the two unless I check the leathers for the 5 Star stamp.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            I'm sorry, GaitedGloryRider! Totally wrote the wrong name.

            Your saddle is lovely. Part of the reason I liked the Circle Y, aside from the flex tree, is the cushy seat. It was the most comfortable western saddle I'd ever sat in. And now you're telling me I can get a full package for the same price....Yeah. Definitely rethinking things.
            "In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has widely been considered as a bad move." -Douglas Adams

            Comment


            • #7
              No problem Cushy seats seem to be all the rage now, Dixieland uses memory foam in their seats and let me tell you it is divine.

              I'm sure there are plenty of other saddlers that do excellent custom jobs too, if Dixieland doesn't pan out. They are just the company I ordered from and the experience was great. Cynthia Wright is who I dealt with, she was awesome.

              I sometimes pop over to Hillcrest Saddlery's site and drool but their saddles are a little out of my price range at this point in time: http://www.hillcrestsaddlery.com/

              I know plantation saddles aren't for everyone but if you get a chance try one out, you might be surprised. They are generally a good fit for short-backed horses also. You can come across refurbished Minihan and stitch-down saddles on ebay semi-regularly but it's a crap shoot if it will fit your horse and they do tend to run on the narrow side.

              Comment


              • #8
                Go to www.horsesaddleshop.com. They have templates that you can download to check what width of tree you need. They also offer advice as to what saddle will fit your horse best.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by GypsyQ View Post
                  So, I'm starting to think about fixin' to look at possibly getting a western saddle. I know what I really, really want...a Circle Y Topeka flex tree: http://www.valleyvet.com/ct_detail.h...5-87657cf1273f

                  However...the current trail horse is a 14.3-ish Spanish Mustang. He has a massive front end and a shortish back. Will this saddle work on him with the double skirt, or should I be looking at more of an arab or other style?

                  FWIW, I ride in a 16" western saddle.
                  Pic of the hairy beast: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...type=3&theater
                  Is he a registered Spanish Mustang? Just curious as I wondered where you got him from. I know nearly everyone. I'm in Virginia also.

                  He looks like he hasn't missed many meals. His plumpness may affect saddle fit also. That is something to consider as you look...that what fits now may need padded up later if he drops weight.

                  Generally in our breed, the rounded skirts are a better choice as they are short backed and compact horses. I would avoid center fire type rigging also. As you can see his girth groove is pretty forward and that is typical. Get the front/forward rigged type saddles you probably won't have issues with that.

                  Most Spanish Mustangs are narrow chested..it is a breed trait. They have narrow shoulders and a wider rib cage. I can't tell if he is built that way or not. Usually, semi bars work for most but he may be too wide and need full bars. My gelding is the exact opposite of your horse and is very narrow. I'm probably going to eventually need a custom saddle for him to do any serious distance riding. They are an old breed and modern saddles do not always take their body type into consideration.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Before I tried finding a permanent saddle for him, I'd find a way to get a bunch of weight off of him. He is unhealthily overweight, IMO. If you find a saddle now and he gets fit and trim, that saddle will no longer fit.
                    NJR
                    Your beliefs don't make you a better person, your behaviour does.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Yes, he is overweight. He and I both need to get back into shape. He is spending a fair amount of time in a grazing muzzle again as I have no dry lot.

                      I have a close contact saddle that works well, but want to have a western in the tack room as well.

                      Daydream Believer, if he is registered then the papers are floating around somewhere else. All I know is that he was in a lesson program in Keswick for about 8 years and she got him as a 5 year old. Hes 15 or 16 now.
                      "In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has widely been considered as a bad move." -Douglas Adams

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Gypsy, do you know his full name? Was he sold to you as a Spanish Mustang?
                        He could be looking at him but I'd have to see more pics to be sure.

                        I might be able to help you find out who he is or where he came from if I knew his name or origin. We also have quite a bit of DNA on file now and can possibly search for relatives that way. So many of our breed's horses have been "lost" that it would be nice to "find" one.

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Daydream, she told me that he had been sold to her as a Spanish Mustang. The only name I was given was "Dancer". I will check with her and see if there was more name than that. I believe she did get him in VA, and I would love to pursue DNA testing if it would be worthwhile. He was such a good deal and the right horse for what I needed, that papers were not at the front of my mind at the time.
                          "In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has widely been considered as a bad move." -Douglas Adams

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Gypsy, There is a good chance we can find out who he is if he is registered. There are only a handful of people involved in SM's in the country and the world and I know most of them. They are quite rare. When you get more info on who they bought him from, papers, full name, previous owners, send me a pm and then we'll switch to email...or you can get my address of my website and go to that from here. I don't want to post it here and invite spammers.

                            Also, more photos would help..markings, front views, etc... and even one from the rear. How tall he is...color (looks dun in his pics), age, etc... There are some DNA databases now in place with the American Heritage Horse Assoc.(AHHA) registry as well as the Spanish Mustang Registry. Most likely he'd have papers with the SMR or HOA (Horse of the Americas). AHHA is a relatively new registry but is the only registry requiring DNA for registration. There is one other registry SSMA (Southwest Spanish Mustang Assoc.) but it is nearly defunct now...however their stud books are still around and he could be linked to a breeder if someone could come up with more info on him. I have some pretty good contacts with AHHA who can help. I'm the Regional Rep for that registry.

                            "Dancer" is kind of a common name in our breed...I have two with that as part of their names! He is pretty cute though and his head is very typey. The pic is hard to be sure since he's quite obese in it but he has the basic correct build. Do you have any pics of him when he wasn't so rotund?

                            Does he gait at all? If they do, most of our horses that gait will single-foot or foxtrot. That info would help also.

                            Comment

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