5 year old - not cut out for ridden work?

Laurac13

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I hope you find answers, agree it could be a hind suspensory Issue, the only time my 6 year old at the time started bucking was when he had a suspensory injury.
Also you mention you had a made to measure saddle for him, when was it last checked, young horses change shape rapidly so may be worth checking too.
Best of luck he’s a lucky boy you care so much for him, keep us posted x
 

Pearlsasinger

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This is very interesting. He has always had quite a basic feed, over winter he was on a low cal balancer (Top Spec) but for the last 6 months has just had Spillers Daily Fibre or equivalent.

I have never used any Top Spec feed but there are people on here who won't touch it because it sends their horses loopy.
The Spillers feed contains alfalfa and molasses, amongst other things and many horses react to those.

If you feel that feed could be the problem, I would take him off everything except hay/grass for at least a month, monitoring his behaviour carefully and then gradually reintroduce straights, so that you can pinpoint the culprit, if there is one. I wouldn't give molasses at all, tbh.
 
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absolutely this ^^

My lad was 'cold backed' and have a very good bronc in him. I did all the investigations you have done, plus feet and hind legs xrayed. It was only when he was 9 and he started showing other symptoms did i get his neck xrayed. He had neck arthritis. Its defintely worth exploring .
Hes one lucky chap to have found you. Not everyone looks into issues as thoroughly as you, I hope you find out whats bothering him
Thank you, that is very kind. Next port of call will be the vet I think.
 
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I hope you find answers, agree it could be a hind suspensory Issue, the only time my 6 year old at the time started bucking was when he had a suspensory injury.
Also you mention you had a made to measure saddle for him, when was it last checked, young horses change shape rapidly so may be worth checking too.
Best of luck he’s a lucky boy you care so much for him, keep us posted x
His saddle was checked before he went off to be backed again, he is very sensitive with any change of numnah etc.

Thank you, if I am honest I feel like he might not ever be suitable for me as a rider but I need to get to the bottom of it all before I decide on the next steps for him.
 
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Seems pretty pertinent to me. Is she able to continue working him?
She absolutely would do. My reason or sending him away was to get to him more 'all rounded' so suitable for me rather than a professional rider.

She is my other option, if all comes back as ok and I decide to sell him I would do so with her support.
 

Trouper

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When all other good vets and investigations have failed to identify a problem my go-to person would be Tom Beech (The Osteopathic Vet. Have a look at his FB page.
 
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What does she do differently?
The lady he is currently with spends a lot of time with groundwork, getting him focused and listening to you rather than reacting to his surroundings. Getting him to be confident in himself so he isn't seeking reassurance from the rider all the time. Asking more of him I guess rather than him seeking confidence all the time from his rider.

The previous lady I had riding him successfully I feel gave him a huge amount of confidence, but also didn't necessarily ask him to overcome situations he wasn't comfortable in. He has always been very reactive to the leg, often in a negative way so she would sit quietly when he resisted rather than continuing to ask / ask in a different way.
 

ester

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To be clear, I was querying that from a pain point of view, I'm generally a believer that physical pain is likely in situations (while being very aware of the limits of diagnostics) but if the lady riding him successfully wasn't triggering that pain what was happening differently then.
 

Pearlsasinger

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The previous lady I had riding him successfully I feel gave him a huge amount of confidence, but also didn't necessarily ask him to overcome situations he wasn't comfortable in. He has always been very reactive to the leg, often in a negative way so she would sit quietly when he resisted rather than continuing to ask / ask in a different way.

That also reminds me of the TBxWelsh that I posted about. She was very reactive to the leg but if you just sat quietly, would be calm. The fireworks started if she was put under pressure. As we continued to feed her, she got more and more reactive, to the point that a child running down the yard, shaking a tube of Smarties sent her into meltdown once. She had seen the vet multiple times to no avail, we ruled a lot of stuff out!

I would save myself a vet bill for now and stop feeding her the molasses and alfalfa.
 

tristar

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i`d change the diet, to grass and hay,

you say you did not set her up right when you first rode her,? and she does not do this all the time, which is interesting, and she had bronked off the previous owner as well.

its a young horse, how did you or do you go about preparing her for ridden work?
 
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In my limited experience horses that buck or have cold backs/hump their backs when ridden have hind leg issues - like spavin or weak/damaged stifles. Both my horses showed similar symptoms and initial thoughts by vets were kissing spines on one and neck arthritis on the other. Xrays were clear however. Further tests found the spavin and stifles issues. Other symptoms with my horses included dragging hind toes, reluctance to go forward/choppy stride, struggling to walk down hills or they go sideways down hills, stumbling/tripping etc. Maybe worth a full bone scan if you can afford it.
Sorry I somehow missed this earlier. This is very interesting as he does have a choppy stride at times - compared to the videos / photos from his advert where he’s floating! I spoke to his rider today who hacked him out yesterday and she said he really struggled to go down hill when they were out (first hack with her)
 
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To be clear, I was querying that from a pain point of view, I'm generally a believer that physical pain is likely in situations (while being very aware of the limits of diagnostics) but if the lady riding him successfully wasn't triggering that pain what was happening differently then.
Sorry I thought you meant the rider as she is a he!

I would say that the lady riding him successfully made it a positive experience every time, not that the current lady doesn't make it positive but if he questions or resists she doesn't just let him continue to say no. I am not convinced there is pain currently, but maybe pain memory from hind gut ulcers - he is a very sensitive horse.
 

ozpoz

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There is always a reason, and I think the cold back and struggling to go downhill make it clear that he is in pain or discomfort. Not letting him continue to say no sounds a bit harsh when you haven’t ruled out pain. A specialist lameness practice would be a quicker way to do this.
 

whizzer

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Sounds like a mare I had a few years ago,bought as unbacked 5 year old, then proved difficult to back. Spent thousands on her,referral to Newmarket,quite a few medical issues which were worked through. Had saddle made for her,gave her time,numerous physios etc etc spent months at professional yards & rehab yard. Exhausted every avenue of what could be wrong but still didn’t want to be ridden,she was a nice horse so there’s must’ve been something wrong but god knows we couldn’t find it!
After 2 years I gave up,I’d spent thousands & never even sat on the bloody thing! Managed to rehome her & bought a very nice,completely straight forward horse that restored my faith that it’s possible to have a rideable horse!
Also she did come good at one point,was going well,came home for a break while I saved up money to have saddle made,then went back to professional after 3 months off & she was back to square one again but didn’t seem able to work through it that time,it was at that point that I decided once & for all to call it a day with her.
 
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cornbrodolly

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Sounds very like the story of a horse we had -a so called unbacked 3 yr old turned out to be a 4 yr old 'broken' in every possible way . This of horse yours sounds as is he is in pain, or had terrible experiences being backed. Vet is the only option , looking at every part of his body. [ Our horse was injured in S I , very badly]
 
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