help on diffrent bits

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help on diffrent bits

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  • Should i use a gag bit on my shetland
  • Should i use a gag bit on my shetland

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    09-12-2009, 11:52 PM
help on diffrent bits

Hi all I'v got several questions about bits. I just bought a horse and the owner said that the horse does not respond well to harsh bits. I am currently using a wonder gag bit with a snaffle mouth and the horse does not respond like it should be for example the horse will not stop on command it will take a few steps and then stop and it will not turn on command especially a left turn. The owner said the horse was trained on an o ring snaffle is there a diffrence between these two bits as far as harshness. The wonder gag bit im using looks like this and how well would the O ring snaffle work compared to the wonder gag bit.

One more question my other horse is particullary stubborn she has a tendency to want to do her own thing when I get on here so I moved up to a harsh bit to a correction curb bit I would like to eventually move back down to a snaffle as I don't want to hurt the horse but the horse still wants to do what it wants for example run but the correction bit keeps her from running but not trotting and go where it wants to but im not sure if I should move back down to a snaffle or when I should move down to a snaffle. The previous owner said that she rides really well with the o ring snaffle but I used a D ring snaffle on her and she was run away horse and wouldnt respond to any of my commands also if this helps the horse was in the pasture for about a year to year and half with nobody riding her and Iv been riding her for about 3 months and with the correction bit for about 3 months now the correction bit that im using looks like this

Thanks for all of your help
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    09-13-2009, 02:58 AM
I wouldn't use either of those bits.
The only real answer is more schooling - for both you and your horses.
A harsh bit is only a short quick solution that normally leads to more problems later on - it's a bit like saying that if you want to stop your horse , tie it to a car ( your horse will stop for sure but is that a road you want to go down )

As MIE would say - schooling - schooling - schooling

Communication with a horse is more than just reins and bit - a couple of weeks ago I was bareback - bridleless - halterless ( yep no tack at all ) on a youngster in a 20 acre field ( real irresponsible I know ) , at one point he started to trot away but stopped when I asked him to - this was made possible because when I ride my horses I use more than just my hands, so when my hands were absent he still stopped because he remembered the other commands to stop - nothing more than schooling can achieve this.
    09-13-2009, 07:37 AM
Nutty Saddler said it all. You can't fix a problem with a harsher bit and expect the lesson to carry over when you take away the "bite." You need to build lasting respect and control first, and a snaffle, a controlled environment, perhaps a few sessions with a qualified trainer, and time/patience are what you need.
    09-13-2009, 08:11 AM
Welcome to the forum!

Using harsh bits in place of training usually escalated to even harsher bits as your horse learns avoidance. What I would suggest, as mentioned by Nutty and Scout, it to drop back to a snaffle (either an "O" ring or "D" ring - makes no real difference at this point) and learn to use your seat/weight and legs to control your horse. The reins should become the second or third aid to stopping, not the first.

I would definitely restrict my riding to arena or round pen until your horse is responsive. I would strongly suggest that both you and your horse get some training. If the first thing a trainer you pick tells you to try a stronger bit - find a different trainer.
    09-13-2009, 10:24 AM
I agree with the others. A harsher bit is never the answer. Both of those bits are harsh and should never be put in any horse's mouth, IMO.
    09-13-2009, 11:37 AM
I have to agree, those bits are exceptionally harsh.

Additionally I'm confused as to why you disregarded the previous owner's advice that the horses rode fine in simple snaffles and don't respond well to harsher bits? I would have given my right arm to get that kind of information from a previous owner.

I'm having a similar quandary right now in that my trainer suggested that I should use a kimberwicke briefly in addition to more training. But I'm not comfortable with that. Right now I'm going to stick with the Korsteel D-Ring happy mouth and work on our basics.

Good luck. I hope that you get a decent trainer to help you with your horses and you as well.
    09-13-2009, 03:08 PM
The owner that sold us the horse sold the horse with the gag bit and the horse with the correction bit would not listen at all but she is listening now so im going to go back down to the snaffle with both of them
    09-13-2009, 05:15 PM
I Agree With The Others

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