Yesterday I rode Melody for just a bit in the arena. We didn't do much except lope circles and do some trotting. She hardly worked up a sweat at all. It was the first time I had ridden her since our long trek in the desert.
After the ride I was administering her daily massage and I noticed something.
Look closely at the musculature difference from left to right? Do you see what I felt?
To pin point it more closely here is another picture with arrows.
In this picture she has her weight distributed evenly and is totally relaxed while eating. The muscle on the right side is soooo tight and hard, where as on the left it is soft an relaxed. The right side is the hip that she has trouble with.
So this leads me to a ton of questions? Is she "tied up" ? How long has she been this way? Did I do this to her by taking her too far? Was it from her and Killian kicking the crap out of each other? Is this what has been causing her to walk funny all along OR is this a result of the compensation of the pain in her hip, or a pain in her hock.
Now she isn't walking any different than usual, so I'm hoping that would indicated that I didn't do this to her by pushing to hard. I would feel terrible if that was the case. But surely if she had been this way all along we would have caught it in her therapy sessions. On the other hand, she has only had two sessions, and although we didn't catch this specifically we did catch that she was very sore in that area.
I guess I'm kind of at that "Which came first, the chicken or the egg" thing again.
For now I am keeping her blanketed at night. First horse I've ever had that loves a blanket. And she has her Back on Track hock boots on, not that they actually hit the affected area, but at least they might be loosening the tendons down below. I also took Sassy's knee boots and made a sort of impromptu stifle boot out of them. Not sure if it is helping at all but it isn't hurting...well except for the part where she feels silly wearing it, but she will get over it.
My biggest questions is what next? Light exercise combined with stretches and massage? Or total stall rest combined with stretching and massage?
Has anyone else ever dealt with anything like this? I'd appreciate any input at all.