How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

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How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:02 pm

I have been wondering about my saddle lately. Not sure what to do.

I know that white hairs are an indication of an ill-fitting saddle. I hardly rode Fanny last year, yet she had the odd white hair on her (she also had a few white hairs on her back when I got her). She still has those white hairs, and I dare say there are more now. But they seem to be more on her left side than her right. Could it be because she's mounted from the left? I usually dismount on the right.

I've been concerned that she's not happy with the saddle. Even though I find it comfy, I'm not convinced that she does. I have a treeless saddle - Barefoot Cheyenne - with the proper pad and all. I don't think she likes the girth, personally. We had it cinched so tight yesterday when we rode her, yet we still had major slippage with the saddle, especially the back end. From the rear, it looked like the back of the saddle was just about over her hip (sideways, not that far back on her)! I would be hard pressed to find a treed saddle (that I could feel secure in) that would fit her non-existent withers, so I prefer to stick with a treeless.

When we tighten the girth, she looks back at us and puts her nose right where the buckles are, like it's cutting into her. She used to pay no attention to us when we'd saddle her up and tighten the girth, but now she will look back. For a while, last year, she'd try to bite me when I tightened it, but she doesn't do that anymore. She has also started pawing the ground when the girth is tightened too. Not all the time, but I have noticed her do it once in a while.

I have been leaning toward a Rebecca treeless saddle (also called a Softride). They deal a lot with round horses. What I like is that they have the "V" or "Y" (whichever it is) rigging, so the "pressure" of the girth straps is on both front and back of the saddle, rather than one single strap over the withers.

Anyway...when we saddled Fanny up last night, she started to bite at the gate she was standing at (like a horse takes a nibble on a wooden fence), plus, when I would walk up by her face, she'd reach out for my hand and flap her lips at my hand. She didn't have her ears pinned back or appear to be trying to bite me, but she was obviously being mouthy in her gentle way. I think she was very unhappy, but I don't know if it's just because she wanted to go back to her field, or if she was in some discomfort. She did nicker when I got off her, which is a good sign, but she was a real struggle to ride. She REFUSES to go to one corner of the small paddock we were in, and as soon as you turn her in the direction away from that corner, she would pick up her pace to get away from it. If you lead her to that area, she'll go, but she is on total alert. There is a ravine a few hundred metres away from the paddock, with another paddock between her and the ravine. She has been in the field behind this small paddock too, so I don't know what she is so afraid of. She is afraid to go to the 'far' end of any of the fields we try to ride her in, and these fields are only a couple of acres, so it's not like it's a huge ten-acre field. I feel like I have no 'safe' place to ride!! Jason and Kathy suggested that I have one of their advanced riders (who also helps out during my riding lessons) come out and ride Fanny. I want to make sure the saddle isn't hurting her, first.

Any other signs of discomfort that a horse shows? Her sweat marks seem to be even. Occassionally I do see the odd twist to her hair, which I don't care for, but it may just be from trying to straighten the saddle when it slips.

Would love to hear your suggestions/comments!!
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by HorseHippie on Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:23 am

You are absolutely right...the saddle is not fitting her properly and she is telling you that when you cinch her up.

Stetson is the same way. I ended up have to spend a lot of money on a saddle just for him. A treed one mind you, but I needed something. Do you have any saddle fitters in your area? Fortunately, for me, I have one just 2 hours away how is actually a master saddler from Britian.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by FlorayG on Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:07 pm

Something isn't right, you know that. But a treeless saddle shouldn't be uncomfortable on ANY horse unless, as you say, you do it up too tight. it may be your balance - when I recently let a friend ride Dancing the saddle kept almost going underneath it was so lopsided and she had to keep pulling it back. I never have to do that when I ride on it. Treeless saddles will go with you if you are not central.
If it was me I would borrow and try some other saddles and see what Fanny thinks of them. If she hates them all then she might be saying something about the rider Sad but I think from what you say she is more concerned about the cinch than the saddle or you. Try a different cinch? see if she is the same when someone else saddles her instead of you - worse, better or no change?
She does tend to be hormonal doesn't she? is she only funny about the saddle when she is coming in season?
Is she a dumpling shape with a big belly? I used to have a horse that shape and the girth would slide forward into her elbows, there was nowhere else for it to sit and I had to get a girth with cutouts by the elbows.
just a few ideas to try!! Rolling Eyes
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:46 pm

Thanks for the suggestions ladies!

I have been toying with the idea of a mohair girth. It's supposed to help with slippage, plus it has a bit of natural "give" to it. I think the girth I am using now is too long. The girth has a 'stay' on it that the straps go through before they go into the buckles. When we tighten it up, it is on the third tightest hole on the straps, and the buckles are very tight against the stay. It is extremely difficult to tighten up the girth any more because the stay and the buckles are so tight against each other. I should take a pic to show you. I've learned recently that the top of the girth should not go any further up her sides than the roundest part of her. It doesn't, but I'm wondering if it'd be even better if it was shorter. It appears to be right on her sides, at the fattest part of her.

Yes, Jackie, Fanny is VERY round!! Big belly underneath (looks bigger than it probably is because her legs are so short). She was in really good shape while at Jason and Kathy's, but she was still round. They said she is just built like that and will always look fat. I knew that, but it was nice to hear someone else say that she is just that shape. She will never look like a Thoroughbred, that's for sure!!

She is in and out of heat these days. Right now she appears to be out. Her "best friend" in the paddock is a huge 15.2hh paint, and he follows her around everywhere. Kind of annoying, actually. He carries on and cries and complains when we take her out of the paddock.

Hippie, I do have a few saddle fitters around. One guy developed his own line of treeless saddles, so maybe he could come take a look at her. I wish there was a treeless saddle fitter around that wasn't interested in pushing their own product though.

A lot of the slippage of the saddle is rider error, I'm sure, but part of it is her shape too. Even at Jason and Kathy's, their treed western saddles were slipping on her!! She has no withers.

Yeah, she does seem more concerned about being cinched up than being ridden. But I do wonder if the way she won't walk straight forward, but always wants to go at an angle, has something to do with what's going on under her. Of course, walking at an angle could also be due to my balance being even a little off. If the front of the saddle looks straight, yet the back of it isn't, that would confuse her too.

If the saddle is left a bit loose, so it can find it's natural position, it is further back than most people would say that this brand of saddle needs to be, but that's where it wants to go on her (Jason told me she has a long back, so I wonder if that's why it needs to be further back than other horses). Do I 'force' it to stay in the more forward position, or do I let it slide back to where it wants to sit? The girth doesn't slide into her elbows. She's usually got a few inches between girth groove and front legs, but maybe it needs to be more than that. I've never felt or seen girth galls.

I was "this" close to getting on her bareback while she grazed this morning. I even tied her rope to her halter, to make reins, in preparation. But then the owner of the paint got on him and came over to where we were, and I chickened out. I don't think Fanny would've cared much if I got on her. I was just going to sit on her and let her graze, which I think she would have agreed to. If I had a smaller (safer) enclosure to ride her bareback in, I'd do it, and see if she is happier to move and so on without a saddle on. I am tempted to buy a bareback pad and try it out. Actually, with the amount of bareback riding I'd be doing, I could just get on her bareback and not worry about a pad. With my padded bottom, I think her back would be fine Rolling Eyes I went through the motions of getting on her - jumping up against her side like I was going to jump on - and she didn't even lift her head to acknowledge that I was doing anything. Once I get more comfortable riding bareback during lessons, I'll get on her.

I studied her white hairs again today. Definitely more on her left side than her right. The right has the odd white hair, while the left side has white hairs here and there in the whole area that the saddle covers.

Could she be out of balance, or have one side weaker than the other? She does move easier in one direction than the other, that's for sure. But I've been told that horses are like that - it's like us being left handed or right handed.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by fin on Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:43 pm

hi cyndi Are the white hairs like on a roan horse or are they in solid blocks of white? Usually hen a saddle iscausing damage the white hairs are in patches and not mingled in with the coat. Just a thought. Also mares are much ore touchy about being girthed up so there may be an element of that. I have a torsion saddle which is very like your barefoot and it is less forgiving than a treed saddle when the rider isn't sitting straight, but it really does teach you to sit straight. Here are my experiences of girths with this type of saddle:neoprene seem to be itchy for the horse, the ones with the curve for the elbows work well.
the 'h' girth keeps the girth from digging in behind the ebow.
here are some links to websites shwing the types of girths I mean. http://www.dreamteamproducts.com/torsion-products-girths.php I use the curved leather one and my pony really likes it. http://www.elementalequine.co.uk/osshop/product_info.php?products_id=69 the h girth is expenive, i borrowed one and liked it but got the torsion cheaper off ebay.
I don't use my torsion so much now as I have my solution treeless with a gullet and that is easier to ride on. (Iake my daughter ride on the torsion now!)
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Fri Jul 24, 2009 7:30 pm

Hi Fin.

I'm glad you mentioned the different ways that the white hairs show up. Her white hairs are intermingled with her coat, like a roan, but just in that one area. I think she has a small "patch" on her somewhere that I've seen (about the size of the fingernail on your little finger...or smaller), but I don't think it's anywhere where the saddle would sit. I'm glad to know that the white hairs that she has are not the "bad" kind.

Thanks for the links to those sites. I will check them out. The girth I have now is thick foam that is covered with a soft leather. It has elastic at both ends, by the buckles. It is the one that Barefoot recommends. I like when a saddle manufacturer carries all the accessories that you need. I'd like it even more if these accessories worked for your horse every time Wink I hate having to do the trial and error thing, because so many different people are happy with so many different things! But if I want Fanny to be happy, I've go to do my best to make sure she's comfortable.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Fri Jul 24, 2009 7:38 pm

Wow, lots of info on those sites, Fin! Thanks!!
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:31 am

Something isn't right. Any saddle, be it treed or not you should not have to make into a gurdle to make it stay secure on your horse. When it's tightened that much it inhibits their ability to breathe properly. I personally prefer a girth/cinch with elastic. It can expand a little when the horse inhales and his ribcage expands.
Try getting a breast collar. A lot of treeless saddles need one because they can slide. I use one on my bareback pads I have.

Also about girths some horses have what is known as a "flat" spot on their belly (like this guy http://equisearch.com/horses_care/health/anatomy/correct_conformation_clinic_800.jpg )The girth naturally falls into this spot. The rare horse does not (I see a lot of arabs who don't like this one http://cdn-write.demandstudios.com/upload//5000/400/80/3/55483.jpg see how his belly and "flat spot" look more round even though he is streched ) they can benefit from being girthed farther back. Some saddles have rigging to accomodate this such as this Y rigging on this tucker trail saddle http://www.myhorse.com/assets/Gear/Tack/asset_upload_file258_9579.jpg or even this one with two slots you can choose from to put the rigging http://www.horsebacktrailriderblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/10/1pad-placement.jpg . It sounds like Fanny might be one of those. Maybe you could take a conformation shot of her?

As a rule of thumb I would want the saddle about 2-4 fingers behind the shoulder blade so it does not inhibit motion.

Usually with the hairs a big patch means theres been damage but a hair here and there could be her natural coat pattern. I know another horse her colour (seal brown) that has white hairs. Every year he gets more and more.

I would honestly go to the treeless saddle fitter. You are lucky to have more than one! We don't even have any for 2 hours here. Explain to him that you want to know how treeless saddles fit and maybe even let him try some of his and ask him to explain to you why they fit better. You may get an idea from them on how treeless should fit.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:03 pm

Sydney, I am a very visual learner, so I really appreciate the photos you included in your message!!

If the saddle is left loose enough to fall into a natural spot on Fanny, it sits well behind her shoulder. Some Barefoot users will say you can have the saddle quite far up, but I prefer it back, and again, that's where it wants to go.

I know of a treeless saddle guy that is 1.5 hours away, and then our trainer is a Bob Marshall dealer, so he would know too. When I used my saddle at their place, they never commented on the fit or anything, so I'm assuming it was okay as far as they were concerned.

I really like the "Y" rigging on saddles. Hopefully, my next saddle will have that. The one I am looking at buying comes with the "Y" rigging. A breastcollar and crupper are included in the saddle price too.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by nags-equestrian on Sat Jul 25, 2009 1:32 pm

I would be worried that she doesn't like it. I have found that barefoot saddles do have a tendency to slip and move, if the saddle is moving a lot whilst you are riding then that could cause white hairs and the horse being uncomfortable. Are there also white hairs under where the stirrup bars sit?

I have a horse who has remembered pain from saddles and always bites when being tacked up, unless she is occupied with treats and forgets to bite,lol. A nice sheepskin girth seems to help, and an equitex saddle pad which is about 2 inches of memory foam helped so she cant actually feel the saddle,lol.

I have another horse who is very sensitive with girths and can only have canter or no elastic girths with a sheepskin girth sleeve, otherwise she jumps when you do up the girth.

The christ lammfelle girths are lovely and soft, but not advisable if your saddle slips.

Have a look at Sensation saddles as well, they are very nice, fantastic quality and made in canada Smile

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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:39 pm

Hi Nags!

As much as I want to like my saddle, I have just had a bad feeling about it for a long time. The saddle itself is nice, but there's this niggling in the back of my mind that Fanny's not happy with it. I've been talking to a couple of Barefoot dealers and they both have differing opinions as to what I should do silent I am one confused girl. Neither of them are wrong, I suppose - they both do what works for them - but it sure does make things harder for me.

No, I haven't noticed any white hairs under the stirrup bars, but that's something I will make a point of checking now, to be sure that there isn't anything there.

I don't think that Fanny has any bad memories of being saddled...unless it's something that I am doing without being conscious of it. The breeder that I got her from is the most sweet and gentle lady I've ever met, and she's the one who started Fanny. She used a treed English saddle. I believe that when Fanny was at the trainer's this past spring, she was saddled gently too.

I've thought of getting a sheepskin sleeve for the girth, but I've read in the treeless group that sheepskin isn't the best if I'm already having slippage issues. I've been told to try a Thinline girth (which I did try, but I can't afford one at $299!!) or a mohair one.

I didn't know that Sensation saddles were made in Canada!
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:40 pm

Sydney...if you want to see a pic of Fanny from the side, to see how she's shaped underneath, the best pic I can find is in my album in the yahoo bitless group, under Fanny Dell. Kathy is on her, but you can still see what her underside looks like. Please let me know what you think.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Sat Jul 25, 2009 4:04 pm

I discovered another pic that might be helpful. I just downloaded it in my photo album in the yahoo bitless group.

In the pic, if you click on "large" at the top left corner, for viewing options, you can see the smattering of white hairs (can't see them in the "original" pic that comes up). I took the pic so I could show the Barefoot dealers what the Large size pommel insert looks like (one dealer said it was the right size, one said it was too small), fit-wise, on Fanny's non-existent withers. Just below and to the right of the pommel insert is where you can see the hairs. You can also get an idea of where her girth groove is.

I sure hope you all can help me!
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:07 pm

It is hard to tell from those pictures because from both she is still kind of on an angle but I am going to say yes, she doesn't have a very prominent flat spot. It's kind of all sloping towards her barrel, not really flat. More round, which is her breed and conformation. You can't help that but maybe looking for a rigging that sits a bit further back can help you as well as using a breast collar for now. Both are cheap.

Where the white hairs are is unusual. Is the rigging on your saddle stiff? Does it press into her side before you even do it up? Once it's done up? That is the only thing I could think that would create pressure there. It would have to be pressing into her a fair bit.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:54 pm

Thanks for your input!!

I don't know that there is any pressure on her in that area before the saddle is even done up. My concern with the rigging, right from the start, is that when you tighten up the girth, the "rigging strap" (underneath the 'skirt' of the saddle) causes a huge indentation. I've been told that it's normal, but I know I wouldn't want that digging into me, even with 'sheepskin', leather and a pad between my 'belt' and me.

Although my saddle is popular amongst owners of round horses, I am not convinced that it's the right saddle for her. I would like to try out their (Barefoot) bitless bridle though Very Happy What are the chances that I'd be unhappy with two of their products?
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:34 pm

I don't see anything "digging" into a horses side that isn't going to cause pressure. It should maybe sit against the horses skin but not make a definite indentation. It would help if you can take pictures of the saddle, certain things like the digging into her and causing the indentation and possibly another conformation shot with her looking forward so we can really see what shes like. Maybe an overhead view?
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by bohohorse on Sun Jul 26, 2009 12:01 pm

Hi Cyndi, a couple of things that occur to me...

I had trouble with Z's Cheyenne slipping to one side and I often felt that I had one stirrup longer than the other. Turned out his pelvis was out - he had his left hip lower than his right. I got a good chiropracter to sort it and the saddle didn't 'slip' any more.

Having said that... I sold my Cheyenne eventually as I've been doing much more jumping and it just felt like there was too much movement going on with it. The hairs under the saddle would be very crinkled when I took it off. Also I was worried that his back was dropping - now that may not have been the fault of the saddle alone but it did mean that his withers and spine became more prominent and I couldn't risk having pressure on the spine. So I went back to my old treed saddle and became very conscientious about getting him to stretch down while riding. There is now no movement and his back is filling out again.

I miss the comfort and the feeling of sitting 'in' the horse with treeless and the added sensitivity but I'd be cautious about going back. I'm sure they do wonderfully on many horses but there will always be a small percentage who don't suit them. Definately go out and start begging for saddles to borrow - it's good fun Very Happy
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by bohohorse on Sun Jul 26, 2009 12:06 pm

And another thing... re Sydney's point about the flat spot, I now have one of these girths:

http://www.robinsons-uk.com/products/Productdetail.asp?ProductCode=31432

The buckle strap slides back and forth through the 'D' so you can have one buckle slightly higher than the other to allow for the natural curve of the belly. I think it's a really nice idea as Z doesn't have much of a flat spot and I always felt bad forcing the rear buckle up to match the fore. Don't know if you can get them your way but they aren't very expensive and probably someone in the UK could ship to you.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Mon Jul 27, 2009 7:54 am

Hi Boho!

That girth looks really neat. I will have to google it and see if I can get it out here. I know what you mean about matching that rear buckle to the front one - I don't like doing it either. But if you leave it, it's so much more loose than the front.

Not sure what to do about the saddle issue. I will have to see if I can find anyone around here who is willing to loan me a saddle.

I got on Fanny bareback the other day, and then yesterday I just let her graze, but stood on things higher than her when she walked by, just to rub her back and test her to see her reaction, and she usually moved away from me. She just doesn't want anything to do with being mounted.

My vet is a chiropractor. I would like to have him check her out, but his initial visit is over $200, which I don't have to spare right now. Looks like I will be spending a lot of time just doing groundwork for a while, which isn't a bad thing anyway. I want to start doing the Hempfling groundwork, so this will be a good opportunity. Perhaps his methods will help me build up her back muscles and so on. More importantly, I hope his methods help build the trust we need, so that she actually invites me to get on her.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by FlorayG on Mon Jul 27, 2009 2:37 pm

Throwing in a deep thought here ( as usual! Mad )
Is it Fanny really not wanting you to get on, or is it you not REALLY wanting to get on? She is tuned enough to you to pick that up. I bet if you were suddenly attacked by a wild dog while doing ground work Fanny would stand like a rock while you scrambled on and then carry you to safety!! (or kick the dog)Shocked

just a thought...you have to know yourself
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Mon Jul 27, 2009 5:26 pm

Cyndi, if you couldn't find one of those girths get a western cinch and get someone to sew the buckles on to the metal fittings. I know my farrier does sewing and something like that would cost about 15$ to modify. A lot of cobblers (shoe repairmen) will repair/modify tack for you.

I was thinking about this today and saddles sliding around. I had a hard time finding a saddle that fit Indigo well before I got my wintec and natural ride bareback pad/saddle. The way I explain saddle fit is like a pair of shoes. A good pair will fit well with a relatively thin sock. If a shoe is too big sure you can put on thicker socks but it will be sloppy and probably strain other parts of your body to walk in them. If the shoe is too narrow or small putting on a wool sock is not going to remedy the problem. It has to be the saddle. You can get girths, saddle pads, (socks and insoles for shoes Wink ) but in the end it should fit and not slide around with as little other stuff as possible. Just like shoes.

Too bad you weren't closer I know I have 8 saddles of my own and know many other people with a bunch of different saddles.

Try mounting Fanny from the other side. The whole reason why humans started mounting on the left of the hose is because the big majority of us are right handed. Right handed people, especially the millitary where riding really started to become refined, all carried swords on their left side. To avoid possibly stabbing the horse they mounted on the left. Makes sense right? I don't think you are carrying a sword so I would go ahead and say mount on the other side.

What about a mounting block? I recently started using one regularly on Indigo who would let me mount then have to take a few steps. Since I now throw my leg over her back she isn't getting strained because I am not putting weight into one stirrup. Mounting from one side creates uneven muscle development. It's the number one thing I see when I am called to do a massage on a regularly ridden horse is the muscle development differing from the side they mount and the side they don't. It does more harm than good. Try mounting from both sides regularly.
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Cyndi on Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:05 pm

Jackie, you are probably right in so many ways! I want to get on Fanny SO badly, yet part of me feels that something still isn't quite right. I think there is still an underlying trust issue between us. It doesn't take much to cause a setback with her, so I have to really think about my body language and even my thoughts. I am learning. Very slowly, but learning.

I will also admit that I was a lot more confident at Jason and Kathy's, just knowing that someone else was there to give me advice when I needed it, and so on. We'll get there, but it'll just take time. Part of me enjoys doing my own thing without someone watching me, yet part of me really enjoys being with other like-minded people.

Thanks for making me stop and think!!

Sydney, I was thinking exactly the same thing about modifying a western cinch! It would give me a chance to try out a mohair girth too, because I think my local tack store has western mohair cinches. I'd just have to remove the pin from the buckle on the cinch. There is even another tack store not far from here that does repairs, so I'm sure she could set me up with something too! She's got all sorts of buckles and things on hand. I sew, but I think I'd rather leave something like that to someone with experience.

Eight saddles??!! And they're all yours? I'll have to let my husband know that it's okay to have more than one saddle lol! .

I prefer to use a mounting block, and use one whenever I can. I will also try mounting her from the other side. Makes sense. I try to dismount on the right, but it's not the same as the weight when you mount. I think I used to mount her from both sides at the old barn. Don't know why I stopped.
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Cyndi

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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Tue Jul 28, 2009 8:02 pm

Yeah eight and they are all mine. One is going to the theraputic riding school near me who is in desperate need for a new saddle for a VERY wide cob. Too bad I already promised them it or I would have sent it to you for a try. I can also harness 4 horses Wink Collecting tack is a serious obsession I tell you. I can never sell any of it because I do use all of it at one point or another. It's def. ok to have more than one...or five.

A dear friend of mine who has had 2 hip replacements (Shes 75 btw) had my friend's dad make this this mounting block that is stirrup height for her horse. She just swings her leg over. I am a bit more nimble I just scramble up a gate or use the wheel hull on the trailer to achieve the same thing. But the point is there are a few older and problem backed horses at this barn. A lot of the owners began using this block, as ridiculous as it looks because it's HUGE. It has made a huge difference in a lot of horses and how they react to mounting. I am inserting a picture of Naigen standing next to it. She was 13.3 you can get the picture how big this thing is but it's very helpful. The purple "staircase" is it and you can see the normal two step block in white to the right. It's also convenient for people watching you ride/train as bleachers lol! When my nephews come with me here they all perch on it until it is their time to ride or help out.


Actually a funny story about that block and the only time I fell off, before I even got on my old mare Naigen. The lady I was talking about with the two hip replacements wanted to ride Naigen so I obliged. She was worried about how Naigen would react to how tall she was above her so I said I would mount her first. I stood up on the block towering above Naigens head, who stood perfectly still, went to half bend down to put my leg over her without plopping hard on her back and woop, landed on my butt on the other side in the sand. Naigen turned her head looked at me and I swear I could read that horses thoughts "your a moron!"
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Sydney

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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Jo on Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:36 am

I already use steps - partly because Trelawny has put on another growing spurt and is somewhere up around 19hh now - so pretty difficult to get on from the ground - partly because I just am not as flexible as I used to be!! (especially with a current neck injury)
I use a set of old steps that used to be the entrance to a barn before it was converted - the steps are higher than Trelawny's back so its very easy to slip on his back with minimal hassle - but I have learnt to use any type of raised platform otherwise I would spend more time on the ground than on board - especially as a lot of the gates we have to go through are too low for me to reach!!! (Or is it that Trelawny is too high Rolling Eyes !!)
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Jo

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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

Post by Sydney on Wed Jul 29, 2009 7:39 am

lol I couldn't imagine! I guess thats why they use quarterhorses for ranch work rather than Shires lol!
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Re: How can you tell if the saddle is causing problems?

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