What to do when a horse or pony is not performing at its full potential?
This is a scenario we commonly encounter. The cause/causes can be simple or complex involving musculoskeletal pain, medical issues and behavioral problems or combinations of the above. Seeing the wood for the trees can be difficult, can take time, and may be a trial and error process.
The starting point has to be a clear evaluation of the horse in the absence of complicating factors. Trot up, lunge and a ridden assessment on appropriate surfaces is a good place to start to establish whether the issue could be a lameness or musculoskeletal problem.
The nature of poor performance investigations is such that the investigation could then go off in any direction and may lead to nerve blocking, X-raying, scanning, endoscopy, and blood tests.