By Bob Burdekin
Does your horse work off its front end? Is your horse experiencing flight pattern problems? How about the ride of your horse, have they become less comfortable to ride? Does your horse interfere with its feet? Has your horse started to or has been stumbling for no apparent reason? Let’s talk attitude, has there been a noticeable change in the attitude of your horse? And, let’s talk about the big one; does your horse have back problems?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you need to read on and find out what will help your horse.
Throughout my many years of experience I have found that many different problems that I have been asked to address have not always been in the area that is suspected. It may be a contributing factor, often referred to as a “side effect”, but more often than not there is a greater underlying problem that is the true root of the entire problem. It is my contention that you have to fix the problem, rather than treat the “side-effect”; for once that the problem is located and fixed the “side-effect” will also disappear.
It has also been many people’s experiences that most of the so-called common faults and or lamenesses that too many horses have to suffer through are the results of improper balance of the skeletal structure somewhere within the horse. It has also been seen that most lameness problems start at the ground; or within the feet of the horse and work their way up the body of the horse until the entire structure of the horse is effected and the horse either cannot or will not perform to its greatest ability due to the pain that is being experienced.
If the horse is comfortable, the horse has a better time and is more attentive to what is happening around them. This tends to make their life, and yours, more enjoyable; after all a comfortable horse has a better learning curve and just all around works better.
What is true for us is also true for the horse; pain is pain and comfort is comfort, it works for you so why shouldn’t it work for your horse?
Most Problems Can Be Helped
In recent years it has been noticed that there has been a longing and a desire by horse owners and professionals alike to help chronically sore-footed horses.
After correct and balanced hoof care, your horse may be sore, stiff or at least behave differently. This is due to the body readjusting to the changes which have taken place. Additional information may be needed in the areas of feed, saddle fitting or other areas that may be pertinent to the specific needs of your horse as part of preventative care to aid the rehabilitation of your horse.
We have all asked questions about a horse’s condition and wondered if the problem could be fixed. And, in most cases we were most likely told that it was the way that the horse was and that it could not be fixed. You just had to leave it alone. Many farriers today don’t know or they chose to ignore that they are the reason that the problem in the horse exists.
What needs to be done is to look for the answers to the same questions that you might have. Make your concern the well-being and comfort of the horse. Look to learning and adapting many techniques that are normally outside of the farrier trade, but do pertain to the comfort of the horse. The integration of these techniques into the farrier process has allowed many horses that were designed for chronic pain to be relieved and are able to do what they do best.
Become that special person who is truly looking for the answers and wants to understand their horse, following this path does not take a great deal of intelligence; what it does take is dedication. And, dedication means that you want to learn what you need to learn, you are aware that results don’t happen overnight – you have to allow time for the information to be absorbed, it then has to be digested and finally you need to be able to redefine that same information into what you are comfortable with.
Until next time “Ride for the Brand”.
My work with horses and owners is dedicated to the thousands of horses that I have had the distinct pleasure to meet, learn from and allowed into their lives. That acceptance has given me the insight that is necessary for the understanding of their world and how I had to alter my thoughts and actions to become the same as theirs. These horses started out as my clients, became my friends, then my teachers and finally my mentors. For that I am forever grateful. Learn more about Bob and subscribe to his blog at http://www.BobBurdekin.com