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Bucking Can Be A Pain In The Back



I have a problem with this mare.. Lovie is 14 years old. She was shown as a 2 and 3 year old in snaffle bit events. The rest of the time she was a broodmare and was handled from the ground. I just started riding her and she was fine at first. Now she gets to a point and starts a chain of bucks and has tossed me off. I am a heavy rider who is not physically able to stay on this horse and basically when we tried her she was a deadhead.. She is working up and is no longer what I consider a deadhead.

My friend previously tried to teach her to drive and when the shafts were around her , she freaked out for no apparent reason. This is after a week of line driving cause the lines bothered her. She bucked under harness and destroyed a jog cart.

She is well mannered on the ground. In fact I body clipped her while she was ground tied. She is a joy to work with and around in all ways. We were in our summer time here so now that its fall I have ridden her about 4 times. The first 2 times she was awesome, quiet, well mannered, crossed heavily trafficked streets etc. Now I'm getting more and more afraid of her cause all of a sudden there are the bucks and they are vicious ones. She bucks with a lighter rider on her and is nervous.

Please help.

This is a nice mare I don't know what has gotten into her. She has not fallen, been hurt etc. She is treated like a hot house flower..

It's difficult to solve such problems over the internet because if I can see the horse and/or people involved in person I can usually home in on what is happening. From reading your email alone, the first place I'd look for the cause of the problem would be in the back. Whenever I have a horse that goes along fine for awhile and THEN starts bucking it is usually always the back. It could be the back itself, or the saddle, but it is almost always a back problem.

In reading your email AND looking at the pics you sent I am even more convinced it is a back problem and quite possibly a pelvic problem. The mare has a mighty long back and she is quite stocky. The pics don't show it as clearly as I'd like but I think I see an unusual line down the back of her barrel as if the two parts the line separates flow in two different directions as if the pelvis is twisted. I also noticed the mare APPEARS to be a little sway backed.

I would expect this horse to buck under saddle regardless of the weight of the rider. There is a leverage factor to consider in putting a rider on that back...because there is so much distance between the supporting ends, any weight is magnified tremendously. This principle can be illustrated by using a yard stick extending over a table edge. The farther out you go from the support, the easier it is to move the stick down.

Trashing the cart after a week of work is not illogical either if what I suspect is true. I find the horses in the most pain are usually the most spooky or sensitive to things touching them. Plus the horse has such a long back and leverage plays a part here as well. She is hooked to the shafts further back than a shorter horse is. Turns with her are more binding than with a shorter barreled horse. She turns, feels trapped, is in pain, blammo! Good bye cart. I wasn't there, but I am more inclined to think the shafts were the culprit for the wreck and not the lines.

Horses can be injured in any number of ways. They do not have to fall. They can be run into by another horse, jerk away from electric fence contact, twist in a fight and on and on. Even rolling over a rock in a pasture can cause a problem.

What can you do?

Have her examined by an equine chiropractor first. Then try to strengthen her back muscles, get some her weight off her, and try to keep the rider's weight as far forward as possible.

You may be able to find a chiropractor near you at if you don't know of one in your area.

You will find readily and freely available videos and information about many of the subjects discussed here at the Index Page.

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