April 9th, 2013

Still very confused about what I should do about everything.  For now though, I’m focusing on my upcoming chem exam, so I’m trying not to stress about it. 

So I’m sure your all waiting to hear about the reps visit.  Got to the barn and futzed around for about 2 hours until the alloted time.  He got there 10 minutes after, apologizing as he was exiting his car.  He explained that he drove right past the entrance, and since I’d done the same things numerous times before, I understood.  So we got right down to business.  Brought him in to see my saddle, to which he immediately exclaimed, “Gorgeous saddle!”  Wahh I know! Too bad it doesn’t fit! Brought Libby out and he put my saddle on her.  He immediately said she had outgrown it, and he could see where she was getting swollen from. 

So he tried numerous different tree combinations that he had, and decided that the best fitting one was a wide tree, with the front let out more, to accommodate her mutton withers.  After deciding that, he brought some saddles out for me to try. 

Tacked Lib up and brought her out with one of the demos on.  When I sat in it, I honestly wasn’t floored.  He was explaining how their new “second skin” design made the saddle much more close contact, which I could definitely feel, but I also felt like the design was really just a flimsy under flap.  I didn’t look very sturdy to me, and was so thin that I could see it tearing in the future, if not taken care of.  But it did give me a super close contact feel, which I appreciated.  The leather on the saddle was nice too, but nothing I hadn’t seen before.  Of course he’d put me in the buffalo saddle so it was super grippy and comfortable. 

Saddle I liked the most

But after riding around a bit, I could feel that the pommel was hitting me every time I came up to post.  I expressed my concerns to him and he immediately knew what to do, had me get off for a quick second, placed some thin pads under the pommel, and had me get back on.  It felt much better, and I wasn’t hitting the pommel any longer.  Huh, quick fix.  He explained in my custom saddle, they would have to take out a bit from the back, since my natural center of balance is farther forward.  I asked how that would affect Libbys comfort, and he assured me it wouldn’t change the fit for her, but I was skeptical.  He jotted down a couple of things and we went back into the barn to discuss the numbers. 

One thing I noticed after untacking her, was that she wasn’t swollen at all.  YAY!! Not only that, but the sweat mark was so even throughout her back.  I was happy about that.

Much better with regard to her swelling!

After walking back into the barn, he looked at my saddle, and again commented on how good it looked.  He proceeded to tell me that Voltaire the company would give me a good price on the saddle, but that I might get a better price by selling it by myself.  I figured as much, but I was still curious to hear what everything would come out to be, especially since I had talked to the customer service agent and had spoken with her about used saddle sales. 

With everything together, it came out to a whopping 2,050 and change.  I was floored.  I spoke with him more about possibly getting a used saddle to fit, but he was pretty sure since they’d have to open up the tree near the pommel, that I wasn’t going to be able to find something to fit her perfectly without going custom from the start.  I was pretty annoyed, not at the rep, but at the situation.  Of course I’d have a horse that needs custom trees and specially widened pommels, of course everything she needs costs that much more. 

After talking more and getting his card and information, I shook his hand and thanked him again for taking the time to come out and fit me and Libby.  At least I’m sure that I need a wide tree, but then again I’ve known that since last year.  So at square one again.  I think I’m going to look into the PJ saddles, since I have a connection with them, and I’ve heard they are great to deal with and incredibly reasonable.

To top it off, since my usual vet wasn’t answering my calls or messages, which is very weird for her, I decided to call her partner to get an opinion, and honestly to make sure she was ok.  He assured me that she was doing ok, but that shes had a nasty virus since Monday.  So I sent him the pictures I’d taken and got this back. 

Managed?! To say I was freaked out was a total understatement, especially when I looked up prognoses of joint effusion.  Most of the articles I found had OCD as a reason behind the effusion, which is not something I wanted to hear. 

When it rains it pours huh?


16 thoughts on “April 9th, 2013

  1. Obviously you need a saddle that fits, but I just don't know about paying for brand new custom if Libby isn't finished growing/filling out. You could be right back to square one in a year or so.


  2. Hock effusion = bog spavin. If its OCD its not the end of the world. We had a pony who we had since he was 2 and he had OCD and was never lame, ever. If the bog is caused by something like a bone chip though, that something that can be fixed. So sorry, horses can be frustrating, they are so wonderful and yet so fragile.


  3. I hate when everything happens all at once — especially bad news!

    On kind of a related note, what exactly does the fitter mean when he says he has to open up the pommel? Is it because the “wide” tree isn't wide enough in the front?


  4. Yea, I brought that up when the fitter was here, and he said its easy to refit the panels. But still, laying that much money down for it to not fit in a year is downright scary


  5. Really!

    Her withers are really wide, but her back isn't quite as wide when they tie together. But yes, essentially its because a wide tree isn't wide enough for her at the withers.


  6. I'm sorry you are having to deal with this. Did you guys do xrays of her hocks when you purchased her? Maybe you can compare the old rads to the new ones. Not that it would change anything but just a thought.

    On the saddle mutant withers :/ At least this fitting showed you that just a wide tree could potentially not be enough for her. I don't know how the Voltaires run $$ new but it does seem like custom is going to be your best route with her. Some brands even offer a tree switch out. I bought my saddle knowing that Houston could potentially need a different size (which freaked me out) but I have until this fall to have the tree changed if Hue did need that.

    There are some brands that aren't as expensive as others though but that still can be custom. I think that Black Country is one of those brands. I personally haven't liked their saddles that I have tried but I never had a rep out and given that they are custom it isn't surprising to me that I wouldn't love the saddles I tried. Hope that you get it all worked out!


  7. I honestly don't remember. I'm going to have to check the radiographs we have.

    I just would hate to shell out money, that I don't have might I add, for a custom saddle, and have to go through this whole process again next year you know?


  8. Totally understand. But a poor fitting saddle will cause more problems that could end up being more expensive. And since your saddle is too tight pads probably wouldn't be able to fix the issue temporarily and the more you use your saddle the more you are decreasing its value… So far Libby isn't violently acting out? But this could end up causing behavior issues as the pain persists? Just thoughts. Hope it all works out for you and I totally understand your frustrations.


  9. I feel like it wasn't long ago that you were doing the saddle hunt… so sorry that you are having to do this again 😦

    Heres to hoping Libby is ok AND that saddle hunting isn't so painful!


  10. Very true. I'm definitely going to be going with a different saddle, not keeping my current one, since I feel awful just riding her in it now with her getting swollen 😦


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