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[RC] Horse Woes - Peggy Bergman-Smith

I rarely post, just read and absorb the great variety of information (and
humor) available here. But now I need advice - bad!
I have a 10 year old Arab ex-race horse mare, LP Dalite, that I love. We
have been training for over a year and I did 2-1/2 LDs so far this year (a
30, 35 and half of a 30 - the half being that I pulled half way because of
saddle problems). She finished the two LDs with good times - no top tens,
just good times - in good shape, no problems.
Then came the farrier problems - losing shoes, hot nails - I have cancelled
out of 3 rides because of shoeing problems and 2 more because of saddle
problems. I now have a great farrier and I bought a new saddle - Wintec Pro
Dressage, CAIR panels, adjustable gullet system - and it fit her great. I
would do long training rides, no hint of back problems. One day at the end
of a 4-hour hilly ride, my HRM readings were really high. When I got home
she seemed okay, but later developed a swollen spot, about 5 inches in
diameter on the right of her spine, in front of her loin area. It was
extremely sore to the touch - I put Epsom salt compresses on it and didn't
ride until it seemed to be totally gone. Next ride (1-1/2 weeks later) same
thing. I then noticed (I know, it's totally stupid) that a lead rope in my
snug pack had moved and the hook had worked it's way under the right side of
the saddle - right where the sore spot was - so I cursed myself, apologized
profusely to my mare, and figured that had done it. I treated her with hot
Epsom compresses, and left her for over 2 weeks with just some ponying until
she seemed fine again. Took her on an easy ride, no hills, just walking and
slow trotting. Took off the saddle, no sign of soreness - until a couple of
hours later, and up came the swelling again. Didn't seem as sore as the
first time.
I'm just wondering what course of treatment I should pursue or should I look
at other causes. Or, did the misplaced hook do a really deep bruise that is
just going to take a long time to heal? Along with my Wintec I use a new
Supracore Coolback pad which I use on my other horse with no soreness
Would chiropractic help? The swelling goes away in about a day, but now I'm
afraid to resume any training for fear of injuring & hurting her further.
Help! Any advice on this would be welcomed! I'll even put up with criticism
if it's constructive!

Peggy Bergman-Smith - professional ride entry canceller
Bear Valley Springs, CA


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