Discussion in 'Problem Horses' started by beccy, Aug 6, 2002.

  1. beccy

    beccy Well-known Member

    My last horse was a bit of a doesy.
    We have this 20 year old bit, that we use for breaking in the horses. Its nothing special, but the horses seem to like it. Just a single join snaffel and flat edges of the rings.
    I have tried just about every bit (snaffel) under the sun on this horse, from german silver, looserings, french, bradoons, single jointed, aniti nut crackers, straightbars, hackamore, rubber, thick and thin and anything else I could find in the tackroom. but my dag of a horse just loved this old bit. Problem is, for hacking it wouldnt shine up (no chemicals or nasties) It was a dull grey in color, and again 20 years old (not nickle plated) So I tried every bit I could, but the horse just didnt like these other bits. I have been looking every where in catalogs etc for a SHINNY new replicar of this bit, but I dont think they come like that any more.

    The horse just didnt like it. In these bits, his work would go dull, ears would stay plain not his usual forward ears and swishing tail, and he would try and chew the bit in half. It worked with the rubber bit. I dont know how he managed it as it was a straighbar. He loves this old bit because as soon as he sees the bridle he tries to bridle himself (watch out for fingers!!!)
    hes not hard in the mouth or anything like that, his neck and poll are like elastic, even if i am just riding him in halter and leadrope. Also as he was training medium/advanced dressage he was being ridden occasional to be introduced to the double briddle which he didnt mind, which i was supprised by.

    I have noticed that I can use this old bit on any horse and they work quite well in it, but the horses dont seem to be nearly as picky as my old horse.

    Do you reckon that this horse is just a sooke? Is there a NEW bit out there that most horses work nicely in? Has any one else had experiences like this?

    I dont have this horse anymore, as I gave him back to the owners after my accident, but it is something I could never really understand.

  2. blondie

    blondie New Member

    One of my boys is like that. I have tried a few but haven't found any that he really likes. He constantly chews on the bit, with a normal nut-cracker snaffle he chews heaps, and with a french link he seems to chew more!
    I am still currently going through my bits that I have, to see if I can find one that he likes. I only ride him in a caverson noseband, as he isn't that strong and I don't want to 'tie' his mouth shut to stop the chewing.
  3. redbird

    redbird New Member

    I bought my gelding a lovely thick copper inlaid sweet iron egg butt, cost a fortune, should have worked great! he hated it, and the only one he works in without fussing with his mouth the whole time is a thin sweet iron loose ring snaffle! Go figure...if they had any idea of how much these things cost, they'd be a little more considerate! Hey! try finding one of those car restoration places that does chroming, they should be able to make your old bit look like a milliaon dollars...
  4. Helen

    Helen New Member

    Hey bekky, you could get it dipped/coated, even just on the ends/rings, we did that with one of our old great!

  5. beccy

    beccy Well-known Member

    wow thanks for the advice.

  6. charlie

    charlie New Member

    Hi all
    what do you think of hackamores and bosals? My ex racehorse hates having bits in her mouth, she changes demeanour completely and chews chews chews but if I ride her in a hackamore with the chain on the loosest setting she is happy. She neck reins and moves off your legs well so that makes it easy to use the hackamore but I hear so many people saying that it is a severe tool and would like your opinions on it. What have people used on ex racehorses that have been taught to grab the bit and ride onto it all the time? Do you use the ordinary egg but snaffle and use a lot of pull release reward type work to get them to stop grabbing and pulling or are the better bits to use on ex race horses to stop this behaviour?
  7. beccy

    beccy Well-known Member

    bits are only as servere as the hands that use them. Ive seen people break horses jaws and be raced to the vets simply riden in an egg butt snaffel. Ive also seen people ride in a double briddle with loose reins (NM) with no contact on the horses mouth, yet the horse chooses to ride and work as if there was contact. No bit is servere and every bit is servere. Though resorting to more gadgets on the bit will NEVER fix the problem and only make it worse (kimbawick gags....)

    If he is hard in the mouth, it is more out of panic, or previous rough hands. You want to make him lighter by showing him lighter. Practice doesnt make perfect, you have to do perfect practice to make perfect. Going harder in your hands will never ever make a soft horse. Ask for half halts or other transitions through the pace to encourage him to come off the forehand and more ballanced, and as soon as he gives be very quick to release, so there is no pressure on his mouth (make sure it is soft in your hands so you can feel it like butter, not sloppy and throw the reins forward). As soon as he takes again, you take so there is contact. be quick on this. Within about 15 min, he will start to realise that when he gives it feels nice, and will try and do anything to keep it that way. his give will only be small to begin with, and prolly for only half a stride, but eventually it will go from one stride - two stride - four strides - 1/4 circle - and soo on. You also have to get his confidence back into trusting you that your not going to hurt his mouth. This may take a long time.

  8. widgelli

    widgelli Well-known Member

    I found the best bit with the inexperienced riders and children were the eggbutt mullenmouth snaffle , which is a slightly curved bit with no join in the middle. This was much kinder as it didn't bend up when they were too hard on it and hit the horse in the bars in the top of the mouth.


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