Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Reader Question on Horse Over Reaching

I received the following question from Raelene in Washington State, from the post 'Horse Training – Overstepping or Overreaching'...."Raelene asks "I have this problem with my 8 year old quarter horse mare about 15'2 hands and short backed, but I use Bell Boots and she still reaches under and causes laceration to her heel. Have and idea's?"

Your horse could have a confirmation problem,...long legs and a short back creating the over reaching problem. You didn't say if your horse was shod or not, but the most common method of dealing with conformation issues that may cause over reaching is to trim or shoe the horse so that he picks up his front feet quicker and sometimes trimming or shoeing the back feet so they come of the ground just a touch later.

Your horseshoer will know what this means, but the basic technique is to shorten the toes of the front feet (so they come off the ground faster) and lower the heels on the rear feet (so they stay on the ground just a touch longer).

I had a long legged, short backed Paint horse who used to over reach sometimes as well, even when he was 7 years old. We shortened his front toes just a little so he had a quicker break over. I began riding him 30 and sometimes 40 miles a week and he quit over reaching for the most part, so I don't know how much the extra riding helped him find his feet and stride or if the trimming helped the most.

Again work with your shoer in this problem and please let me know if you get some resolution to your mare's over reaching. I'd still use the Bell Boots to protect those fron heel bulbs.

Good Luck.

1 comment:

  1. Renegade boots work great to protect the bulbs when riding!