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How to Tell if Your Horse’s Back is Sore

Submitted by member: Ellen

How can I tell if my horse has back pain and what can I do to help relieve this kind of soreness?

Answer by Dino Fretterd

Well, the most common way someone determines if they think the horse’s back is sore is by running their hand down their horse’s back or topline. If there is a reaction, it is assumed the back is the problem. This should lead to the question of… is the back muscle reactive due to tension of a contraction or tension through elongation (due to excessively tight lower abdominal muscular contraction – the opposing muscle). All too often I see and hear of people treating the back when it is the compensatory issue. Hence rarely correcting the initial consideration of “a sore back.” By understanding the horse’s posture, it is actually easy to determine the reality of the discomfort. As for helping it (sore back) using reflex points (properly) is the most effective way I know, and have been using them for years.

Hope this is helpful.

Best wishes,

P.S. On my website I offer clinics on postural assessment and balance.

Video Recommendation:

back pain in a horse

Back Pain in the Horse
Geoff Vernon and Rob Boswell
Top sport horse veterinarians and back specialists, Geoff Vernon and Rob Boswell, discuss the various back problems that can crop up for our equine partners. They highlight the different treatment options from the most high-tech to over-the-counter remedies and provide advice to the everyday horseman on how to recognize back pain in your horse.
Running Time:  18 minutes and 48 seconds

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Dino Fretterd

Dino started working on horses in 1996 after he received his certification in Equine Massage Therapy from the Optissage in Circleville, Ohio. He previously worked on people for 17 years, specializing in muscular/skeletal dysfunction.  During this time he worked with Chiropractors and Orthopedic Surgeons aiding in their patient’s recoveries. Dino’s latest and best endeavor yet is his Posture & Performance DVD Series. This 3-DVD set will change your life, and the way you view your horse. Visit Dino's website for more information:

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