We have a 7 year old cob mare. We bought her in the winter, December 2010 and she arrive on January 1st 2011. She showed no signs of head shaking when we viewed her, asked if she had any vices to which the previous owner replied no. She passed her vetting. She did not head shake when we viewed her being ridden.
Everything was perfect until mid April 2011. She started to toss her head up and down in a vertical motion. It would start as early as about 1 minute into riding. She DOES NOT head shake when in the field/being tacked up. It is only when she is being ridden. I once did dismount half way through a halk to walk alongside her and she did continue to head shake.
After realizing this issue was head shaking, I started to research on the net and looks for answers. Not realizing that looking for a cause of her head shaking would be like opening a can of worms!
So firstly we believed it could be Pollen (April being the begginning of the pollen season). We tried:
. Nose net
. Piriton (Given by vet)
. Nasal Spray.
.Full Face Mask.
. Global Herbs Shake Free.
All of which did not make any difference to her at all, so we started to attempt to find another cause:
. We had a vet come and have a look at her, he found nothing.
. She had a blood test, which came back showing nothing.
. I've ridden her with no noseband.
. I've tried riding her in a very loose bridle.
. Made sure the browband isn't pinching her ears ect.
. Saddler checked all our tack in Jan when we got her.
. She had her teeth checked 2 weeks before she started to head shake. (Dentist is visiting in April).
We've tried loads of things, and it's so frustrating and such a money pit.
Now the winter months have arrived I was hoping the head shaking might calm down. But unfortunatly it is persisting.
I would be grateful if anyone has any experience with head shakers like this or if anyone has any advice on what step i can possibly take next? I do have some videos of her head shaking on my photobucket: