Dr. Chiro came out last Thursday and gave Kaswyn another adjustment. He said that Kaswyn's left shoulder was less tight than it had been before, so the stretching has been helping him. When I told the doc that Kaswyn was still not quite even at the trot, he checked his shoulders, neck, and chest for sore sports. He found some soreness in Kaswyn's chest, right between his font legs and over on the left side.
Dr. Chrio said Kaswyn could have a rib out of place, which could be pressing on the underside of the shoulder blade and causing pain. He stood on the left side, facing Kaswyn's left shoulder, got very close to him, lifted his left leg, and wrapped his arms under the leg so he had his forearms against the left side of his chest under his leg.
When he did this, Kaswyn picked up his head and wrinkled his nose, and Dr. Chrio said "He's sore here. Now, here comes what I call the "bad Heimlich maneuver..", and with that he lifted up with a jerk to put the rib back in place.
Kaswyn made a noise I had never heard him make before. It was a combination of a grunt and a squeak, and he leaped backwards and threw his head in the air. I said "Oh my God, what was THAT?" and Dr. Chrio said "Yeah, that was painful. He really hurts there. I haven't seen a horse react that strongly to that adjustment in a long time. Usually they don't do anything except grunt a little. But that was huge. He hurts there, for sure."
Since then I've been continuing with the light riding or lunging, then stretching. Yesterday Kaswyn was certainly off when I rode him, so I only rode long enough to warm the muscles up for the stretching. My barn friends were there and I did a right shoulder stretch on Kaswyn and he threw his head up. The one gal said "Oh wow, he didn't like that. Look at his ears." Sure enough, he had his ears halfway pinned and his nose wrinkled. I tried massaging his shoulder and chest, but nothing I did seemed to work. He still had that painful look on his face.
I took him into the arena, seeing if he wanted to roll, which he usually does after he works. But he didn't want to roll. I walked him for a little bit but he still had the owie face, nose wrinkled, ears half pinned. I didn't know what else to do but put him back in his stall and give him bute.
Today he'll go outside. I'm not sure what I did yesterday that was any different than the stretching that I had been doing. I'm hoping that I just stretched something a bit farther than usual. I can't see that little me could move my horse's shoulder enough to tear something or really hurt it. I'm not that big, or that strong! So here's hoping he'll be better when I head out there tomorrow.