My 20 y/o stallion, Clipper, went *very* "off" last year after breeding
season: short stepping behind, not wanting to take leads, and just
generally not coming "through." I had several vets look at him and had
several diagnoses: overwork (not likely); stifle problems, etc. Finally
found Tina Steward DVM an equine chiro. In five minutes she told me he was
subluxated at the sacroliac. After his first adjustment, the RX was to (1)
longe him walk-trot-walk-trot (2 mins.each) for a week before cantering on
the longe. Horse should be encouraged to *stretch down* (I do this by
half-halting when the inside rear is just coming on the ground); (2) three
"tummy tucks" a day by applying (a considerable amount of) pressure to his
tummy at midline to cause him to raise and stretch his back; (3) tail
pressure (daily for 1 minute), wrap tail around hand and sort of water-ski
on with gentle pressure, increasing to full weight (This one was fun!
After a few times he would pull away from me, really getting into it, Now
he loves it.); (4) neck stretches: stand off to side with treats and get
him to stretch down and off to the side to get them, down by your knee.
You can probably tell that all of this is designed to stretch and
strengthen the topline, building the musculature to hold the vertebrae in
the right allignment. I have used these excersizes on my gelding, Beau,
(same subluxation) as well. Results: Clipper did not even need second
adjustment. Beau did, but is coming along great.
If my mere anecdotal experience is at all generalizable, Laurie should not
give up on this horse yet. This type of subluxation is not uncommon and,
we found, is very treatable. It could be very simple. Get a good chiro,
preferably one who's also a DVM--there *are* quacks out there.
Gala Argent, Silvermoon Sport Appaloosas
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