Please suggest a bit for my AQH mare

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Please suggest a bit for my AQH mare

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    07-05-2011, 12:22 AM
Question Please suggest a bit for my AQH mare

Hi everyone, I have a question concerning bits ... I'm trying to make a good purchase on a bit for my AQH mare.

Here's the story/history:

She came to me with her own tack that has been used on her for the past several years. The bit she came with is a tom thumb I'm assuming - at least, from looking at pictures of different bits, that's what it looks like. Although the "cowboy snaffle" and the Tom Thumb look similar.

Anyway, The first time that I tried tacking her up - the bit didn't seem to suit her at all. It was turning inward and going in her mouth ... it seemed like it was to narrow for her mouth. I don't know what the deal was/is. It sure didn't appear to suit her at all - and she was really mouthing it because of how it fit her. I took it off her right away and put it on a back shelf never trying it again.
After that I purchased an Indian Bosal for her. I tried her with that and she did "ok" but we had some issues since she's used to a bit and NOT a bosal. So now I'm thinking about purchasing another bit to try and decide what works best for her.

So ... that being said, Is there simply something going wrong with her old bit that came with her ... and I just can't figure out why it fits her that way, OR should I go ahead and buy another bit ... and if I should, what type of bit should I buy ... the same ... or something different?

I ride western. She's a pretty good horse, just bullheaded (sometimes VERY bullheaded) so she does need something that will make her listen. But I don't want anything "harsh" either of course.

Any suggestions???
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    07-05-2011, 12:46 AM
Have you had her teeth checked to make sure that's not what's bothering her? Also, does she neck rein or direct rein?
    07-05-2011, 12:51 AM
She direct reins. I don't think it is her teeth ... the bit literally appeared to by too narrow for her mouth - the sides of the bit were going in her mouth. I've never seen a problem with a bit like that before. And it's the bit that came with her - so that's suppose to be the one that the previous owners always used on her. Which is why I don't get it ... what's going on??
    07-05-2011, 01:01 AM
It could always be that the bit is too small. What does the current bit look like?
    07-05-2011, 01:01 AM
Does she have a "normal" size mouth? Can you snap a picture of what's going on?

Anyway, you might start with a snaffle and see how that goes, and if that doesn't work, a dogbone Argentine snaffle should be similar to what she's used to, but hopefully without the pinching problem.

Also, you might check out the link in my signature for general bitting information.
    07-05-2011, 01:07 AM
Tomorrow I'll snap a picture of the bit itself, and then maybe I'll try to video it on her to show you what's going on. So I'll come back on here tomorrow night and post the picture/s and video.
    07-06-2011, 04:46 AM
Until I see some pics/videos I really can't say much...

But, I would try a simply two piece snaffle first (dogbone, copper roller, etc) to start her out.
    07-07-2011, 02:48 AM
Why not just try a simple French link snaffle? I ride English, but my understanding is that even Western horses are typically started in snaffles, so it should be something she understands. Plus, if you have any other horsey friends around they probably have several snaffles lying around unused that you can try out.

Out of curiosity, what size is the bit that came with the horse? You can use a measuring tape or ruler on the part that goes in his mouth, from cheekpiece to cheekpiece if it's not stamped on the bit. My (admittedly limited) experience with average size QH's is that they typically use a 5 to 5.25" bit.
    07-07-2011, 06:11 PM
Originally Posted by verona1016    
Why not just try a simple French link snaffle? I ride English, but my understanding is that even Western horses are typically started in snaffles, so it should be something she understands. Plus, if you have any other horsey friends around they probably have several snaffles lying around unused that you can try out.
Most to all western horses are started out in snaffles. When I decided to start showing western, I still kept my english trained horse in a snaffle, for the beginning stages on learning the different headset, and beginning neck reining. When he had all that down, I moved him into a short shank.

It's true, you're really not going to go wrong with a simple, smooth snaffle that fits well. Most will be quite comfortable in that. I'm sure there will be someone that you can borrow a couple from. Just make sure you clean them well before they go in her mouth.

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