When to Seek Treatment for Your Horse

Animals cannot communicate their pain to us easily and therefore it is up to us, as owners, to look out for signs of discomfort in them.

As a guide, owners should consider seeking treatment if their horse displays any of the following signs:

• Unlevel/uneven gait
• Stiffness and/or reluctance to bend on one rein
• Unexplained bucking/rearing/napping
• Inability/reluctance to strike off on or maintain a particular canter lead
• Disunited canter
• Cold backedness/discomfort when mounting
• Oversensitivity when grooming/rugging up
• Reluctance to work in an outline/engage the hindlimbs
• Uncharacteristic mood changes, eg grumpiness or lethargy
• Lameness where all other causes have been ruled out
• Uncharacteristic refusals/knocking of poles/rushing at jumps
• Jumping to one side
• 'Leaning' on one rein
• Reduced performance
• Head shaking/carrying to one side
• Lack of impulsion/reluctance to move off the leg
• Reluctance to stand square