Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Protect Your Horse from Back Pain - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · January 17, 2012

Back pain in horses can be subtle or obvious; can manifest as shifting lameness or just a generally sour attitude; and is sometimes tricky to diagnose and hard to relieve. Savvy owners put their efforts into preventing back pain in their horses rather than trying to eliminate it once the discomfort sets in. Here are a few things to think about:

•Be sure your saddle fits well and your pads are in good condition. Many excellent articles address how to check your saddle for the best fit. If you still have doubts, ask an instructor or more experienced rider to help you. Keep saddle pads clean, be sure they lie flat under the saddle without pushing down on the withers, and replace pads that become thin or worn.

•Maintain a regular schedule of hoof trimming and shoe resetting (about every 4 to 6 weeks for most horses). Slight changes in the length or angle of the hooves can make a horse move differently, possibly stressing his back and legs...

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