Bit and head problems - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 11-15-2013, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
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Bit and head problems

My horse has recently started playing with his bit more when im riding. He moves it around in his mouth and he also bobs his head up and down constantly when anyone rides him. He only has a snaffle bit but i was wondering maybe he needs his teeth floated again. Is there any way you can check their teeth? Why would he be bobbing his head, is it to do with his teeth or something else?
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-15-2013, 06:31 PM
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Yes, he could quite possibly need a float, most horses do every couple of years. As for you checking his teeth to assess them, no, a vet experienced in equine dentistry is the only one who can do that properly with the proper equipment.
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post #3 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 08:29 AM
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It's actually not impossible to check them yourself. Just be careful about it. I do think you should have the vet out to float them though. Ask if he/she might show you what they look for and how. Usually if you do find any sharp edges on the first three or so then there are more edges further back that you can't get to.

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post #4 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 08:56 AM
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When did he have them floated last?

All horses should at least be checked once a year. Some horses need floats every 6 months. Depends on the horse and their stabling/pasture environment.

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post #5 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 10:29 AM
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Could be the bit, too. Or your hands.

How old is he? How much training has he had? What is your experience? What style of riding do you do? Have you tried other bits? See...all sorts of info we don't have.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 10:49 AM
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I'm going to go with teeth. It's almost always the cause

Good luck :)

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post #7 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 01:05 PM
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Could be bridle needs to be taken up and bit is resting too low also.

Picture of him wearing it would help.

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post #8 of 9 Old 11-17-2013, 01:54 PM
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You can't check the teeth yourself unless you have the tools and knowledge. You'll need to call out your horse's dentist.

I get my horse checked twice a year - sometimes he gets floated both times, sometimes not. He's sensitive in the mouth so if he is borderline I'll get him done.
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-18-2013, 04:10 PM
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Is it head bobbing or head tossing? Two different terms, at least in my horsey background.

In my experience, head bobbing is generally a sign of lameness or soreness in the legs or back, similar to how you may cringe or walk oddly if you twist your ankle. His head will go up and down when he moves because he's compensating for pain somewhere. It's unlikely he'll bob his head while he's just standing still, unless you palpate and find the sore spot.

Head tossing would be more like swinging his head up & down or side-to-side, whether he's moving or even standing still - it could still be pain related, and could be due to his teeth, as you asked. But some horses head toss just to avoid work, like being haltered or bridled, or because they are losing their vision and he's getting spooked since he doesn't see things coming toward him. Then I once received a "problem horse" for training, but his head tossing was solved the moment I removed a chunk of tree bark that was stuck in his ear.
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bit , head bobbing , teeth floating

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