Mare with unexplained episodes of falling

Dr. Lowder:
I have a 12 year old 17h TB mare who has fallen twice in the past year while at a canter. Both times she was carrying a rider and was jumping low courses. She can be heavy on her forehand and also tends to trip if distracted (when her head is up listening intently to a strange sound). My vet tells me her basic neuro exam is normal and despite her falls she hasn't once been lame. She's very physically fit. The vet seems to think she's just clumsy. As a rider, I don't allow her to go along on her front end, but now I'm concerned about each and every stride she makes. I'm told that on the horse's last fall, it was a while before she got up and that she may have been unconscious? Could this simply be clumsiness?Dr. Lowder:
I have a 12 year old 17h TB mare who has fallen twice in the past year while at a canter. Both times she was carrying a rider and was jumping low courses. She can be heavy on her forehand and also tends to trip if distracted (when her head is up listening intently to a strange sound). My vet tells me her basic neuro exam is normal and despite her falls she hasn't once been lame. She's very physically fit. The vet seems to think she's just clumsy. As a rider, I don't allow her to go along on her front end, but now I'm concerned about each and every stride she makes. I'm told that on the horse's last fall, it was a while before she got up and that she may have been unconscious? Could this simply be clumsiness?

Story originally posted by: Dr. Michael Lowder, DVM, MSUniv. of GA School of Veterinary Medicine

Dr. Lowder:
I have a 12 year old 17h TB mare who has fallen twice in the past year while at a canter. Both times she was carrying a rider and was jumping low courses. She can be heavy on her forehand and also tends to trip if distracted (when her head is up listening intently to a strange sound). My vet tells me her basic neuro exam is normal and despite her falls she hasn’t once been lame. She’s very physically fit. The vet seems to think she’s just clumsy. As a rider, I don’t allow her to go along on her front end, but now I’m concerned about each and every stride she makes. I’m told that on the horse’s last fall, it was a while before she got up and that she may have been unconscious? Could this simply be clumsiness?

Thanks;>BR>
Noreen

Noreen,

It could be that you mare might be experiencing some mild lameness in her front feet (sore heels, degenerative joint disease, etc.) and a good lameness examine is indicated. Talk with your local horsemen and find a vet that is good at lameness examines and have them take a look at her.

Thanks, Dr. Lowder

The author cannot be responsible if this information is misunderstood or misconstrued because it has been taken out of context. The concepts and techniques discussed in this answer are meant for experienced horsemen. Because of the nature of electronically transferred information, the integrity or security of this message cannot be guaranteed. No valid patient client relationship is implied or inferred and always consult with you local veterinarian.