Difference between tender touch and jr cowhorse
 
 

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Difference between tender touch and jr cowhorse

This is a discussion on Difference between tender touch and jr cowhorse within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category
  • Bit similar to a tender touch
  • Using a jr cowhorse bit

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    06-13-2014, 09:41 PM
  #1
Foal
Difference between tender touch and jr cowhorse

I have seen these two bits mentioned a lot in this forum, but I don't have a very clear understanding as to the difference between them. I get the structural differences, but what do they do for the horse differently? What kinds of horses are they better for? Or are they interchangeable?
For reference, these are the two bits I am talking about:
Jr. Cowhorse: Metalab Stainless Steel Junior Cow Horse Roller Dog Bone Gag Bit 5 3/8'' Stainless Steel - Rakuten.com Shopping
Tender Touch: http://www.smithbrothers.com/reinsma...t/p/X3-013163/
I am not new to barrel racing, but most barrel racers in my area are fad chacers and just go with the newest, biggest, fanciest bit that has been endorsed by someone famous. I am finding it rather difficult to learn some of these things from any of the "trainers" in my area. I actually own the tender touch and it worked wonderfully on my old horse, however I am starting over with my new mare (who is currently in a d-ring snaffle with a roller) and I want to educate myself as much as possible before moving her up into anything else. Any help in this area is greatly appreciated.
Sorry for the long post and all the questions.
     
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    06-13-2014, 10:01 PM
  #2
Green Broke
Now I am not a bit guru, but in my opinion, those two bits are very similar. I have a jr Cowhorse like you posted so I have never had the need to get a tender touch, because I feel like they are very similar.

I like the jr Cowhorse because it is a relatively mild bit (short shank) with a decent balanced purchase to give you lift of the shoulders.

In general, I am a big fan of dogbone bits because I feel it helps a horse be softer in the bit. And it allow you enter direct rein control, with the least amount of effect on the opposite side.
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    06-14-2014, 10:47 AM
  #3
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by beau159    
Now I am not a bit guru, but in my opinion, those two bits are very similar. I have a jr Cowhorse like you posted so I have never had the need to get a tender touch, because I feel like they are very similar.

I like the jr Cowhorse because it is a relatively mild bit (short shank) with a decent balanced purchase to give you lift of the shoulders.

In general, I am a big fan of dogbone bits because I feel it helps a horse be softer in the bit. And it allow you enter direct rein control, with the least amount of effect on the opposite side.
Posted via Mobile Device
Thank you very much for taking the time to explain this. I actually was able to go to Sharon Camarillo clinic last year as a graduation gift from my parents, and your explanation of the jr cowhorse bit is pretty much identical to the one she gave me for the tender touch. I was beginning to suspect that they were similar, but I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something important. Thanks again!
     
    06-16-2014, 01:29 PM
  #4
Foal
I believe Abetta has a bit that looks just like the tender touch for half the price. I use one for my mare because after looking at the price of Tender Touches, I decided that wasn't the best deal lol! The problem with the Abetta one is that it can leave sores on the horse's mouth, so I use bit guards on mine. After seeing the jr. Cowhorse I think I might look into those too, they're about the same price and they look like they might work better :)
     
    06-16-2014, 02:26 PM
  #5
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misty789    
The problem with the Abetta one is that it can leave sores on the horse's mouth, so I use bit guards on mine.
Myself personally, I use bit guards on ANY bit that has a gag action (where the mouthpiece can slide). Any time you have that slide, there is the possibility that a horse can get their mouth pinched.

Bit guards are a cheap way to ensure your horse's comfort.

(And yes, even this bit below is a gag.)


     
    06-16-2014, 08:55 PM
  #6
Foal
I have both the Jr. Cowhorse and the tender touch. My gelding much prefers the tender touch compared to the cowhorse. It has a straighter shank and a quicker gag action, I find (I'm no bit expert). Trooper seems to enjoy it and works wonderful in it :) But they are very similar
     
    06-16-2014, 10:54 PM
  #7
Green Broke
Beau--Slightly OT... But do you recommend this for English bit/bridle gag combinations as well?

Sorry for the hijack! XD
     
    06-17-2014, 08:53 AM
  #8
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roxiandsplotch    
I have both the Jr. Cowhorse and the tender touch. My gelding much prefers the tender touch compared to the cowhorse. It has a straighter shank and a quicker gag action, I find (I'm no bit expert). Trooper seems to enjoy it and works wonderful in it :) But they are very similar
The quicker gag action makes sense given the differences in the structure of the actual gag part of the bit. I had not noticed the straighter shank. Out of curiosity, what difference does a straighter shank make?
     
    06-17-2014, 09:05 AM
  #9
Foal
Ahaha, I've just been stalking this topic, getting what info I can from it about the difference lol :3 my sister used to use a jr. Cowhorse. On a mare we had, it worked fairly good.
     
    06-17-2014, 11:24 AM
  #10
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zexious    
Beau--Slightly OT... But do you recommend this for English bit/bridle gag combinations as well?
Are you referring to the bit guards?

If so, YES.

A gag bit is a gag bit, no matter what discipline you ride. That mouthpiece can slide, and has the potential to pinch skin.

Even my colt that I ride in an O-ring snaffle bit has bit guards. It's not a gag bit, but that ring can still slide around on the mouthpiece, again, giving the potential to pinch.

At least that's my opinion, anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleBayMare    
Out of curiosity, what difference does a straighter shank make?
A straighter shank gives you a quicker signal.

For example, this bit could be considered "harsher" because the shanks are straighter. The very instant you pick up on the reins, the horse is going to get a signal because the bit will engage.




Versus a bit like this, where the shanks are "swept back". This bit could be considered a little more "mild" because the horse is going to feel you pick up on the reins BEFORE the bit itself is engaged. It gives the horse more of a warning.

Roxiandsplotch likes this.
     

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