Protective boots and bits

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Protective boots and bits

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    12-22-2010, 07:06 PM
Protective boots and bits

What Protective Horse Boot Provides The Best Protection?

I want to make sure my horse is safer from any tendon or ligament injuries as we start working a bit harder. I've seen lots of people use polo wraps or professional choice SMBs but which boot or wrap has the most protection for the horse's leg? I ride primarily in an arena, but sometimes out on trails and we show western pleasure. Price isn't something I'm too worried about, but I don't want to spend a fortune. I know that proper warm up and cool down are important to reduce injuries but I want to take the prevention one step further.


I ride a horse that's a TB/paint cross. I've been helping in training her for western pleasure along side a trainer and her leasers. She's hyper and the most mare-ish horse I have ever met in my life; high maintenance. She was ridden in a wonder gag bit since she got her two years ago except in shows where she wore a pretty long shanked curb. I can ride her primarily with seat and leg but her leasers don't know how and don't really want to learn. I've recently convinced her owner to put her into a full cheek snaffle because she chomps on the bit so much and is just too fidgety. She's really softened up a lot and understands how to do everything in the full cheek but she HATES it. I've had multiple people tell me that she hates the bit, so it's not just me. She just has an over active mouth. I've tried a mylar with a roller in the middle and didn't see any difference and I don't want to go back to a shanked bit with her. She could use something with a little more "bite" because she sometimes decides that the bit isn't there but she's fine in something softer. Does anyone have any ideas on a bit I could try for her for everyday riding? She will go back to her show bit during show season but I want to have a good bit to ride her in on the off-season. We've had her in the mylar (eggbutt, level 2), full cheek, regular eggbutt, smooth D-ring, Roller D-ring, O-ring, ported kimberwicks, short shanked low port curb, wonder bit, wider tom thumb, skinnier tom thumb, tom thumb with slobber bar holding the shanks in place, her show bit (medium port, longer shanks), a pretty average simple curb, and I believe she's been in a hackamore as well. The only one she doesn't hate is her show bit. I've been told to try a twisted wire O-ring on her? Or something with a twist and a roller? Or a solid mouthed snaffle? Any ideas?

Thanks for your help :]
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    12-22-2010, 07:17 PM
Pro Choice SMB boots are excellent and can be used for trail riding, reining, jumping, eventing, etc. They are pricey though so that's something to consider.

Changing a bit doesn't solve a training issue. Ideally, a trained horse will be able to be ridden in a simple D- or O-ring snaffle, a Western horse in a simple curb.
    12-22-2010, 07:31 PM
The bit isn't really a training issue. She can be ridden in all of the bits listed, it's just she really doesn't like some of them. I've never had a horse not like bits as much as this one. She listens but I want to try to find her something that she will like to some extent.
    12-22-2010, 07:41 PM
Have you tried her in the softest bit you have, like an eggbutt?
    12-22-2010, 07:54 PM
Please re-read the post. I've said exactly which bits I have used.
    12-23-2010, 07:05 PM
Originally Posted by GeenasGQ    
Please re-read the post. I've said exactly which bits I have used.
I don't mean to seem rude by saying this but I don't like being told that I don't train my horses well enough when I said she works in the bits listed but she doesn't like them. I just find it frustrating when people don't read posts and they just assume its someone saying "my horse doesn't stop! What's a harder bit?!" when that's not the case at all. :]
    12-23-2010, 07:13 PM
I couldn't find this thread, thanks for bumping it back up!

Nah, you don't sound rude. A lot of times I jump to the conclusion that it's a training issue because it's so common, but obviously in this situation it's not. Have you tried going bitless? A lot of horses just don't like the bit, and a hackamore/bosal/bitless setup might be better.
    12-24-2010, 02:21 AM
My horse is really fussy about bits too. Really, he's sensitive about EVERYTHING haha, but I use a twisted snaffle for training and it works really well. My horse likes to pack a "big" bit. He goes horribly is a regular D-ring snaffle. I really like my twist because I know its there if I need that extra "bite" but I don't have to use it if I don't need it. I reccomend it.
    12-24-2010, 02:26 AM
Some horses just naturally like more "bit" in their mouth. We had a MFT that would ONLY work well in this big long-shanked curb. He chewed at just about everything BUT this. It wasn't a matter of other bits not having enough brakes; he was the slowest, most bombproof thing you could get! He just liked more bit.
    12-24-2010, 11:22 AM
OP-have you tried different metals? Copper or sweet iron, etc?

I had a mare who I had a similar problem with and I put her in a Greg Darnall sweet iron twisted wire o-ring and she loved it.

I have no idea if that's what it was, but it was the first bit we used with the sweet iron mouth.

Just food for thought.

bit, boot, mare, prevention, softer

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