Saddle Suggestions for High Withers

Something to consider is Verhan, either the Futurity or the Todd Minikus. They have a wide channel and look to accommodate a long wither. I’m trialing an older Todd Minikus in buffalo and thinking it is a keeper for my Arab-warmblood cross who looks a lot like the thoroughbreds of my long ago youth.

There is a screaming deal here you might want to check out. The leather color is the older London type, but it should darken with oil. This saddle is wool flocked and can be adjusted.

Devoucoux can make you something that would work- I love how wide their gullets are normally and their LUZ panel is beveled on the side facing the gullet to effectively give you even more room- but it won’t be cheap. Used, Bruno Delgrange or a PJ might work for you- I’ve had good luck with those for this conformation, sometimes over a wither cutout pad. If the horse is really shark-finned, figure you’ll be putting the saddle on over a wither cutout. Skip the fleece ones and go straight to the wool.

I am a CWD fan for sure. I have two horses with very high withers and the saddle I had custom for one of them fits all four of my horses great. I do have to use a black rubber no slip pad on the high wither horses. My trainer has a few CWD’s and they fit all the horses really well. I am pretty impressed at how our saddles fit so many horses.

I used to have problems with my super wide no wither horse. I couldn’t find anything to fit him. The CWD I had made for my high wither horse fit him. So I suppose that’s why I am in love with my saddle.

I did try a few used CWD that were older models and they didn’t fit. It’s worth the trouble and if you have the budget to get a custom. I have heard great things about the Volairs. I heard they are lighter weight too which some people prefer. It really is about what you like, what fits you and what fits your horse in the end.

Good luck. I hope you find something.

I have a mare who was/is a very difficult fit. She is wide bodied, but has very high, very long withers. The ONLY thing I tried that fit her (after trying many different saddles) was a MW Black Country Quantum. My saddle fitter met me at the barn while I had it on trial and she was IN LOVE with the saddle. Even though I hadn’t committed to buying it yet, she went ahead and restuffed it for my horse saying she would buy it from me if it didn’t work out. It has the wither gussets, which is a MUST if you have a high withered horse. The gussets allow the fitter to add additional wool to help lift the saddle up off the withers. The one thing about wool is that it settles over time. So you’ll need to have the fit re-evaluated yearly to maintain that perfect fit. Another plus to this saddle is that it is extremely comfortable to ride in. No, it is not that narrow twist ultra close feel that the French saddles have, but when you have a hard to fit horse you need to throw away the mentality that narrow twist is better… because it’s usually not better for the horse…

I have a thoroughbred with very high withers and a flat back. He’s been a nightmare to fit a saddle to, so this year I finally bit the bullet and went for a custom CWD and couldn’t be happier. Before the CWD I had a County, and while it fit him great, I found the seat way too deep to jump high in. Anything over 3’ was leaving me behind and kind of trapping me in the saddle. I don’t have that issue with the CWD at all, and it is a great fit for him. If you’re doing dressage or jumping low jumps, the County would probably work well for you, but if you love the flatter seat like me, I vote CWD.