Last week I had the huge pleasure of meeting Freda .. she is an adorable Welsh Mountain Pony, sweet, gentle and kind. She has never been ridden, has had 2 foals and spent the majority of her 14 years as a companion … she has never had to gallop across hunting fields or jump round a course of 3* cross country jumps… she has had a pretty easy life compared to some and so you could be safe in assuming that she is not an equine that would have suffered much in the way of muscle fatigue…
Freda had returned from a loan home a while ago and her owner reported that even though she had always been very timid, standing back at meal times, she was also now spending a lot of her time just standing in the field and had recently become unwilling to pick her feet up.
On palpation I soon discovered that Freda had huge amounts of muscle spasm in her hamstrings, her shoulders and along her back. Not the sort of muscle tension and soreness you would expect to find in a little paddock ornament.
After one treatment her owner reported that Freda was now able to pick her feet up easier, she was rolling in the field… something she hadn’t done for ages… was grazing much more and generally being an all-round perkier pony…
I am so grateful to have been able to help Freda and even more grateful to her wonderful owner for listening to her pony and calling me out…
Thanks to her vigilance Freda is now able to enjoy life much more … to think she could have so easily been ignored and then had to live the rest of her days in pain…. :o(
Just because she wasn’t being ridden/worked doesn’t mean she can’t suffer from muscle pain.
So please listen when your horses speak… 99% of the time any resistance or awkwardness is your horse trying to tell you something …sometimes their voice is quiet like Freda’s.. not all horses speak by bucking, biting or kicking…if they have been suffering in silence for a while they can shut down and become dull and lifeless… it is up to you, your vet, your farrier and your physio to listen and work out what they are saying… and it is our duty as their guardians to make sure they live as happy and pain free a life as possible!
The Beautiful Freda xxx
The beautiful Freda J