So I had such an interesting conversation with my farrier yesterday that I just have to share...
I have finally conceded defeat, for the moment, on trying to figure out the root of Moon's problem and asked the farrier to just pull his shoes. Moon is so tight, tense and unhappy that I told him that I was simply going to resort to the old-fashioned belief of turning him out and forgetting about him for awhile.
Whether it's the saddle or not, his back is so tight and sore that continuing to try to work though things just seems futile and unnecessarily cruel.
I mentioned to the farrier what the vet said about tenderness in his right hind and asked him to check it. The farrier found nothing. I also mentioned that we had noticed he was loading the outside medial on his left front and asked him to double check that. The farrier acknowledged that Moon was in fact loading to the outside of his left front.
I must have looked pretty defeated because the farrier asked me what the heck was going on and I filled him in on the last few weeks of frustration and that I was just going to turn Moon out for awhile and start from scratch when I felt that his soreness and sour attitude had dissipated.
The farrier says, 'Good! Looks like you both need a break. But I want to show you something and then when you start bringing this horse back, you don't keep doing the same thing I can tell you have been doing.'
I was a bit taken back. Of course the nature reaction is to defend oneself and I told him, "I haven't been doing anything lately. I quit doing anything except to just ride and try to keep Moon's back loosened up, but it keeps getting worse."
Farrier: "I know. I can tell by how atrophied his musculature has gotten over the last 3 months." Then he says, "You do realize there is nothing physically wrong with this horse in the back-end don't you?"
My eyes kind of narrowed...because if nothing else, I have figured out there is nothing actually physically wrong with Moon from the hip back. I couldn't help but sound a bit snarky, when I replied, "Yea...it took a couple thousand dollars, but I think we have safely eliminated any problems in the hips, stifle, hocks or fetlocks."
My farrier gets a big old grin on his face, like a kid you have just unexpectedly handed a piece of candy to and I get the distinct feeling he has been waiting for this moment. I'm already cringing...so I throw out, "Well, the vet thinks it might be that the saddle I am using is pressing on his kidneys." I knew it was a dumb thing to say before the words were even out of my mouth. My self-defense mechanism kicked in and I wanted to assure my farrier that I was not a complete moron, but you know how sometimes you say things hoping they make you sound like you have a grip on the situation...when you are actually at a total loss?
And I got what I expected...the very same look Ed Wright gave me a couple of times not just to long ago...That look that says,
Wow, You are dumber than dirt!
UUggghhh...Lately I have felt dumber than dirt. I have never had a horse with such a pronounced and mysterious ailment that I can't fix. I am the queen of fixing things. *I* am usually the one that people bring their horses to or ask for advice from about particular things that are going on. *I* am the one who can spot the problem and pin point the cause. *I* am the one who figures out teeth, feet, diet, training and conditioning problems and fixes them.
When the hell did *I* become the one who was dumber than dirt?
My farrier walks over to Frosty and asks me if I use the same saddle on him. I replied, No. He takes his hand and presses on Frosty's loin and Frosty sinks away from the pressure. The farrier looks at me and asks me if I still think it's the saddle pressing on Moon's kidneys. I'm a little speechless because I have never noticed Frosty suffering from back pain.
Oh, but my farrier was only getting warmed up...
To be continued...