Rubber bits - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By Endiku
  • 1 Post By cooperandsandy717
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post #1 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 10:13 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: South Africa
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Rubber bits

Hi all
I was wondering if anybody on this forum uses or have experience with rubber bits, especially snaffle and or mullen mouth. I live on a farm in SA and we have several farm ponies mixed breed mutts mostly that are used for "cow ponies" to gather cattle, look for lost goats, etc. My problem is untrained riders with extremely hard hands. `no matter how many times I tell them to relax their hands and not ride with such short reins, the less they listen. We have too few constant riders for me to try and train them, but in the meantime they're buggering up my poor horses' mounths. My equine dentist was here yesterday and recommended I put my horses in rubber bits/ bittless bridles. Now I was wondering whether to get some single jointed rubber snaffles or mullen mouth snaffles? I know the mullen is supposed to be the "softer" bit I'm scared that since they don't know the first thing about steering a horse with their seat it will only make them yank the horse around even more.
Any advice please?
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post #2 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 11:36 AM
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Why do you have inexperienced riders gathering cattle and goat? ._. get an ATV if you want to save your horse's mouths from them.

I ride almost all of my horses in rubber jointed snaffles or in mullen mouths with copper rollers. If you have inexperienced riders on your horses, I'd say that looking into a rubber snaffle or even a side-pull (bitless. DO NOT get a mechanical hackamoore) would be a good idea, but the best option is to just not have them on the horses at ALL if they aren't going to listen to you. They very well could have already ruined your horses for all you know.
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post #3 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Endiku View Post
Why do you have inexperienced riders gathering cattle and goat?
That may be one of those "dude" ranches.

OP, not all horses like the taste of the rubber bit. Also from my experience with happy mouth one some chew it throw in no time.

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post #4 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 11:53 AM
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I wouldn't reccomend it the rubber bit. I know some people love them but I tried a rubber snaffle on my Thoroughbred who has a very sensitive mouth and it actually pinched the sides of his mouth and his mouth was starting to bleed while I was riding and I have very soft hands. I had my trainer and my vet look at it and they said the bit fit and even he little rubber donuts that are supposed to help with the rubbing didn't help so now I just use a normal french link bit and it works a lot better.
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post #5 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 12:33 PM Thread Starter
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Endiku, I have inexperienced riders riding my horses because the experienced riders are all working for the big stud farms. Here in the Northern Cape it is endurance, endurance and more endurance so if a worker proves to be worth something with a horse he is snapped up by them in a heartbeat. The area I live unfortunately does not lead itself to ATV's and the cost would be an issue. The other option for me is selling my horses. And believe me right now that's a very serious possibility. Then they can just use their feet to go gather the cattle. I will be putting one of my mares in a cross-under bittless bridle, she can be ridden in a halter in a pinch and her mouth is almost worst affected, but will have to do some serious training with one of our geldings, he is very hot under saddle and can be quite difficult. Maybe I should get one mullen mouth snaffle and one jointed and try it for a little while, see how the horses respond. if their is still damge or the horses don't like the rubber I might just sell them. Only pproblem is with them being "mutts" the only people sho are likely to buy them are other farmers who will again give them to their equally untrained riders to use for the same purpose and perhaps not even get a dintist out to check their teeth.
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post #6 of 6 Old 10-18-2011, 12:50 PM
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I think you should go this route. Many years ago I was breaking in two 4yo's, on Arabian ("Corporal", 1982-2009, RIP) and a QH. I bought 2 of these bits:
Metalab Rubber Mullen Mouth Pelham Bit and Pelham Bits | EQUESTRIAN COLLECTIONS.COM
I kept them. When my 5yo QH was throwing his head with an eggbutt snaffle, I switched him for awhile to this, a rubber-covered, mullen-mouthed Pelham. He's been ridden with it enough now that I won't need to make the switch from snaffle to curb. I've used a metal curb chain on him, instead of the popular leather curb.
HIS history is that he was dropped at a local Equine Rescue. He was gentled, handled, and...ridden by good-hearted but inexperienced riding help. I'm sure that they balanced on his mouth, and couldn't follow at the walk. I have just recently switched same horse to a full-cheeked, Dr. Bristol snaffle, so I can get him on the transitions and half-halts.
I am sure that rubber-mouthed bits will work well for you. =D
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