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post #91 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Mylady View Post
And there are other researches apart from Dr Cook ( I will try to find them in English).
Could you post references, please, even if they are not in English? I haven't came across any scientific research that bit causes the pain, besides the papers from those selling bitless bridles (any BB, not just Cook's) and PETA. But I don't consider either to be "scientific". So would be interesting to see some.

BTW, I completely agree on personal preference (I did start both my mares in sidepull, and then switched to the bit as they progressed), I just disagree that bits (in general) cause pain and discomfort. My sidepull was the gentlest possible (just a wide leather noseband with reins attached, much more gentle than Cook's bridle or indian hackamore), yet both horses prefer bit.

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post #92 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 12:57 PM
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Even on this picture (like many others with him and the horses) the animal looks stressed and scared to me. I have a theory on his training - I hope I am wrong but I think he uses some kind of electric shock device because on his videos the way the horses react to him and then perform these tricks it is possible that they were subjected to some kind of shock treatment. But this is just my thoughts running away with me so please don't dwell on it
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post #93 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by kitten_Val View Post
Could you post references, please, even if they are not in English? I haven't came across any scientific research that bit causes the pain, besides the papers from those selling bitless bridles (any BB, not just Cook's) and PETA. But I don't consider either to be "scientific". So would be interesting to see some.

BTW, I completely agree on personal preference (I did start both my mares in sidepull, and then switched to the bit as they progressed), I just disagree that bits (in general) cause pain and discomfort. My sidepull was the gentlest possible (just a wide leather noseband with reins attached, much more gentle than Cook's bridle or indian hackamore), yet both horses prefer bit.
I will forward info to you asap it's just the paper is in bloody Russian
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post #94 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 05:20 PM
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Yeah, I sure want to see those 'tonnes' of research about bits, ML! If you're so amazing with with languages, you should be able to translate the Russian paper easily enough for us. What about the rest? 2 (possible) examples are far from 'tonnes' & would like to see Dr Cook's actual research.

I've seen what Dr Cook has to say, but nothing else. His work is interesting & I tend to give 'benefit of doubt' to it, that I'm by no means dismissing it & it is entirely obvious to me that bits *can* & do easily cause pain & other issues far too commonly. BUT I am far from convinced they're *necessarily* a bad thing. I do personally think they are best confined to being used with a well trained horse *and rider* though.
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post #95 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Forgot to say thanks & will check out your links Kayhmk too. But is there an English version of that Polka/Spanish walk one, or could you give a basic explanation of how they go about teaching this?
At least to my knowledge the book is still being translated into English, so there's no official translation of the page(s). However, I suspect much of it goes the same way as • View topic - 2: Spanish Walk and Polka + VIDEO
(and Jambette discussion here: • View topic - 2: Jambette)

With the limited preview pages and my limited Dutch skills it seems *very* close to that topic & videos. Just with more background/ideology exposed.
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post #96 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 06:21 PM
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Yeah, I sure want to see those 'tonnes' of research about bits, ML! If you're so amazing with with languages, you should be able to translate the Russian paper easily enough for us. What about the rest? 2 (possible) examples are far from 'tonnes' & would like to see Dr Cook's actual research.

I've seen what Dr Cook has to say, but nothing else. His work is interesting & I tend to give 'benefit of doubt' to it, that I'm by no means dismissing it & it is entirely obvious to me that bits *can* & do easily cause pain & other issues far too commonly. BUT I am far from convinced they're *necessarily* a bad thing. I do personally think they are best confined to being used with a well trained horse *and rider* though.
I have read all of the research in Russian as Russian is my first language but I am not going to sit translate and type pages and pages of stuff (and there is a lot of it)- sorry I have better things to do with my time - like working with my horse for example. However if you are interested I can forward you the info you can look up references yourself and one article in particular can be easily translated using online translator.

I think Dr Cooks published papers are also available online - google it. If not then it would be archived in equine studies section in veterinary university online catalogues.
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post #97 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 07:50 PM
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Dr Cooks published papers aren't going to convince me my eyes are liars.

Yes, a bit can hurt a horse. And yes, if your horse is panicking and not responding to cues, a sidepull halter can take the hair off of your horse's face - and I suspect that involves some pain too. I know because I've done it. And if you pull hard enough on Dr Cook's bitless bridle, you will put a lot of pressure on the jaw. I'd bet that can hurt as well.

I would bet the bit I used today hurt Mia several times. She was having a "You're not the boss of me!" day. At one point, she nearly backed into a large cactus, and THAT would have hurt her too. Not to mention what would have happened if she ran out onto a road where the speed limit is 50 mph.

When she was about to ram the cactus, I swatted her rump HARD with a leather strap. She didn't like it, but she would have liked the cactus spines stuck in her butt a lot less! We did some tight 360s, too. When she wanted to canter (or faster), we stopped. Didn't need a pulley stop, but I wasn't being gentle on the reins.

I wish I could have been. I prefer riding with slack in the reins. Heck, I'd prefer riding with a sidepull halter - but a horse who refuses to listen to her rider can kill herself and her rider. And I don't want to die.

After about 10-15 minutes of near constant fussing, she decided to give in. For the rest of the ride, turns were based on leg cues. Back to the arena, we cantered a couple of laps and then stopped from the canter. A complete and quick stop. No sliding, of course, but she didn't waste time, stopped with her feet squared and didn't move until asked.

After dismounting, I removed the halter, held my hand next to her face, and she rubbed against my hand for several minutes. No, there was no blood on the bit and no sign of injury. I needed to wait for some others, and she stood relaxed next to me, nose at my hip.

Yes, bits can cause pain. So can bitless bridles. Neither is intended to cause pain. But horses get a vote in things, and a horse who votes to endanger her rider needs consequences that will change the vote. Nevzorov's solution is to stop riding. But my horses get bored with a 70' corral, and I don't want to pay $20/bale of hay to feed large pets. Heck, my wife didn't feel like riding today, so she walked our little mustang on a lead line with us (my daughter & I and our horses).

But while there was nothing mild or kind about my hands during part of the ride today, at the end my horse enjoyed her face rubs, enjoyed getting her mane brushed and seemed to enjoy hanging out with me as we waited for the others. I played with her bangs and scrapped some goop out of the corner of her eye with my fingernail. And unlike Nevzorov's horse, she didn't try to bite me...
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post #98 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 08:10 PM
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Bsms said that perfectly.

I've posted this image before and I will post it again..

image.jpg

Those are the nerves on a horse's face. Bitless bridles can cause just as much pain as a bit can. I've actually seen a lot more blood come from bosals and rope halters than a bit. Dr. Cook's bitless bridle has caused nerve damage in the past.

There just isn't any difference when it comes it pain between a bit and a bitless bridle.

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post #99 of 107 Old 02-02-2013, 09:28 PM
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Ehh. Another bit less craze.. I'm about one of the most traditional trainers and riders you'll find. I've done extensive research and have never found any true study that showed that bits are more painful that any form of bit less bridle or rope halter. They are merely opinions, like Dr. Cook, he is just marketing his fad and saying bits are cruel to make a buck on some contraption that I wouldn't put on one of my horses if you paid me. I ride a horse bit less for at least the first year of their training, with a rawhide bosal hackamore. And then they step up to bigger bits, and there is never an issue with a horse being in pain with a properly adjusted bridle bit. And this is in around 150 head of horses. But on the contrary, I've seen horses faces scarred and indented, with scar tissue on their lower jaw and chin from ill use of a mechanical hackamore. I've seen horses noses bloodied with a wrongly used bosal. I've seen horses shake their head madly because rope halters pull on very sensitive hairs around their eyes. I have seen hard mouthed horses, but I haven't ever seen a horses face disfigured by a bit. Did you know you can break a horses jaw with a mechanical hackamore? There is no truth behind the bit less fad. I've dealt with all of these problems caused by bit less bridles used wrongly. Don't get me wrong, I love riding horses in a bosal. But the bit less craze is only a fad. Any training or riding equipment can be painful if used wrongly. Ignorant humans cause horses pain, not the equipment itself.

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post #100 of 107 Old 02-03-2013, 04:13 AM
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Agree mostly with you BSM & Wanstrom, that yes, you can most definitely hurt a horse with any headgear & that *possibly* a bit used strongly doesn't hurt any more than a harsh halter or hack used badly. And for that matter, I'd probably be no more reticent about tying a horse up firm with a bitted bridle as in a thin, virtually unbreakable rope halter.

I just don't personally think that you're likely to do as much damage/pain using a halter a little strongly as doing the same with a 'simple' snaffle or such. Which is why I like to teach a horse(& rider) to yield reliably(respond softly with understanding) to pressure before using a bit. IME of 'retraining' horses, I have also found that generally bitsour horses go so much better in a halter or such.

I do believe that bits were *originally* designed to control a horse through force & the *ability* to create acute pain. I just can't think of a good reason people would have come up with pieces of metal in a horse's sensitive mouth otherwise. I also believe that when it comes to safety(& we all know, even with the best training, stuff can happen), it's 'right' to do whatever is necessary.

So.... I agree with you also Wanstrom, that it seems to just come down to a matter of opinion & experience, but I think it's important to consider the 'arguments'.... along with considering everything else we do to/with horses objectively so we can make more informed opinions
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