Got on Xena a bunch of times yesterday. Took probably 15 minutes for her to let me lean against her left side, but she didn't mind at all on the right. Lots of approach and retreat..... but I really can't decide if I think its a physical problem or not. I know that last trainer she went to said that her back or ribs or something was out of alignmnet and that was his excuse for her bucking. Seems like quite the coincidence that it happens to be on the side you mount from, and she didn't have that problem last summer before she got sent off to him. So either
1. She's anticipating a bad experience during riding, which is easily fixable with friendly games.
2. She actually was in physical pain, (I thiiiink I heard they "fixed" whatever "it" was), and now she's anticipating pain. Fixable with friendly games and good experiences, not quite as easy.
3. Hope it's not this... she actually has something wrong with her, which is going to take $$$$$ I-mean-a-chiropractor, to fix.
I'm sincerely hoping that it's just a fear of mounting problem, not a back/rib issue. My glimmer of hope is that I think if she were in pain, she wouldn't buck and roll and jump for fun as often as she does, and that it would be equally bad on the other side.
Anyway, I took her to some grass, and mounted from both sides. I'm confident with getting on her now, so at least some good became of it. She had absolutely no reaction to my jumping on her while she was eating.... you'd think if her back hurt she'd at least flinch.
So.... my game plan for right now is to do loads of friendly with zone 3 and maybe for a week, mount while she's grazing after we play and just sit there for a while. After that, I'll try mounting in the arena again... if she still has a bad reaction to it, I'll hunt for a chiro. I need a job. >.<
(Random interjection - I was playing zone 5 driving with little Ghost the past few days, and I got her to trot half-pass on the sideways box pattern! I REALLY gotta figure out my video camera, I'm itching to audition.)