We have been perplexed for the last year or so with a very talented young western pleasure horse that would occasionally exhibit a “short” or “lazy” step at the jog. We had his hocks and stifles x-rayed and even sent off to a specialist. Nothing physically could be found to explain this way of going. Even after a flexion test, he would trot off just pretty as you please. We finally contacted Dr. Christine Woodford and had her look at him. She found his hip to be out and some vertebrae in his back that needed some adjusting. Coincidentally, at this very same time, I also happened to talk to someone that had this same condition on one of their horses. It actually was corrected by a training technique that encouraged them to “march” into the trot. Two days after Dr. Christine’s adjustment, we tried this training technique and the “short” step was gone! It evidently was a “habit” that he had developed, but of course that habit would have affected his spinal alignment. Two weeks later, we took him to a large open show and he had two firsts and two seconds in western pleasure classes that ranged in size from 25-45 entries! I’m become a believer that training and chiropractic care work hand in hand in developing a top-notch prospect.
Western Pleasure Horse