Hackamore for a Tender Mouth? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 09:20 AM Thread Starter
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Question Hackamore for a Tender Mouth?

Our "boys" will be coming home soon! My wife's horse is a 16 yo who has been used for a long time as a western-style "trail ride" horse and because he is so gentle, was ridden by a lot of kids. The problem is he has developed a tender mouth from incorrect rein handling by the kids. He will take a curb bit but only after several attempts. He can be ridden in a pen/arena with just a halter. So my thought is why not put him in a hackamore. My wife is a moderately experienced rider. We be using them for forest and desert trail riding almost exclusively.

I have begun researching the different kinds of hackamores. The simplest looks to be a leather-covered noseband used on a standard bridle. So my questions are: Will a hackamore provide her the control needed on the trails; and will a noseband hackamore work well enough or should we consider a mechanical hackamore?

Any thoughts or input on hackamores are appreciated.

-Dutch & Ten

"I ain't as good as I once was ... but I'm as good once as I ever was"
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 09:53 AM Thread Starter
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BTW.. this is the noseband I am considering:

Jeffers - Pet Supplies, Equine Supplies, Livestock Supplies

-Dutch

"I ain't as good as I once was ... but I'm as good once as I ever was"
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 02:37 PM
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I think that is a pretty mild control, so it really depends on the horse.

I have had issues with my horse regarding bits as well, and after a TON of research I ended up going with a Dr. Cook's bridle.
So far, so good, it works as well as a bit as far as I've needed it to.

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post #4 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 03:01 PM
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Are these kids going to be riding the horse again? If so, I would look more into sidepulls than mechanical hackamores. Hackamores can be rather harsh if used be someone who doesn't know how they work.
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 04:26 PM
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I second the side pull, especially if he already goes well in just a halter. Schneider's makes one with a leather nose band that I really like.

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post #6 of 12 Old 09-19-2011, 07:49 PM
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You might look into an English jumping hackamore. It's like a sidepull, but better!

I'm also selling, for my employer, some pretty neat handmade leather hackamores, unlike anything else on the market. Crosby/Passier/Blue Ribbon saddles, bridles, bits, misc. tack - bargain priced
Take a look...only two left (in the world, as far as I know!).
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-20-2011, 08:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poseidon View Post
Are these kids going to be riding the horse again? If so, I would look more into sidepulls than mechanical hackamores. Hackamores can be rather harsh if used be someone who doesn't know how they work.
No.. TJs kids-days are over Only my wife (and me occasionally) will be riding him now. He neck reins beautifully, so I haven't even considered a side-pull.

-Dutch

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post #8 of 12 Old 09-21-2011, 04:08 PM
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Think of fitting a Myler bit - there's a whole range to consider and here in the UK there is a system for trying them and if they don't fit for sending them back.

Even if you are riding Western, there is no reason not to use an English bit of which the French Link type is regarded to be one of the mildest. You can buy them with a sweet iron centre which encourages the horse to salivate.

Don't confuse a horse who is trained to the bit, if time can heal the mouth.
The bitless bridles work on the nose and poll,whereas a bit works on the jaw.

Anyway, it is the heaviness and coarseness of the rider's hands which count.

Salivation helps, - try using some very mild toothpaste to encourage salivation.

Also ask a horse dentist to call by - especially if his teeth have not been rasped for sometime.
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post #9 of 12 Old 10-02-2011, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
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The boys are home!! After a 2 hour ride home, they got some turnout time, some food & water, and a nice brush down. We saddled up and rode the arena a short while in their hackamores. No problem so we went out on a short trail ride. Still no problems ... until we 'opened them up'. The hacks had no 'whoa-power' at a dead gallop. They came from the same place and are buddies - one will do as the other does. So we are trying them on curb bits today, will see if that corrects the issue.

But it's great to have them home!

-Dutch

"I ain't as good as I once was ... but I'm as good once as I ever was"
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post #10 of 12 Old 10-02-2011, 02:08 PM
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Sounds to me less like a hack problem and more like a riding problem. Sure, you can get a giant bit and use pain to intimidate the stop, but unless you can stop any horse from a dead gallop with nothing but a halter, you really have no business galloping, anyway. Hint: Regardless of the bit/hackamore/halter, it's not how hard you pull that gets the horse to stop.
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