Bit Grinding

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Bit Grinding

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  • What bit helps to stop my horse grinding
  • Bit grinding in horses

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    11-13-2007, 01:48 AM
Bit Grinding

Our mare tends to grind her bit quite often. It is a hiddeous noise (like nails on a chalkboard). She doesn't seem aggitated, tense, or uncomfortable, but every couple of minutes you can hear the grinding noise. She also really tends to lean into bit contact (not in a good way) - I don't know if the two things are connected. I have been doing exercises that have worked with my other horses to soften to the bit, and learn to carry themselves rather than leaning against the bit, but she continues to lean on and even push on the bit.

The vet gave her a quick once over in with her teeth in the springs, but was not thorough at all. She is not dropping food or having any problems keeping weight. Now that I am aware of the bit grinding, I will have her teeth looked at much more closely when the vet comes out (we have no equine dentists).

I have recently ridden her in a two jointed sweet iron snaffle with copper play rings, and a single jointed sweet iron snaffle with copper inlay. She grinds in both.

What's up??
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    11-13-2007, 04:48 AM
Not sure if it's any help but my vet files a bit groove when he floats the teeth. I guess it helps the bit sit easier in the mouth
    11-13-2007, 10:37 AM
I would never have a vet do my horse's teeth. Vets spend about 1 or 2 days "learning" how to "float teeth." They may be able to identify pathology, but they don't know how to properly fix the problem.

I would suggest calling Spencer LaFlure who is an actual equine dentist, and a fine one at that! Or, I can PM you the name of the guy we use who lives in Wisconsin, and he is one of Spencer's Instructors. They have a different approach to floating teeth, and no one else will ever float my horse's teeth! I love the work that they do, and so do our horses.

And I would NEVER, EVER, allow any dentist to but a bit seat in my horse's mouth. It does not help the horse become more comfortable. This is what our dentist had to say about bit seats. I quote him word for word. "If you need a bit seat to make your horse comfortable, you don't need to be riding. Also, when you put a bit seat in, you take away one molar in the horse's mouth. Horses have had those teeth in their mouths for millions of years, and all of a sudden they don't need it?? It's just rediculous and it really screws up your horse's mouth."

The weight loss and dropping food could certainly be as a result of her teeth. So could the bit grinding. Normally that kind of behavior is associated with pain (which might be likely b/c her TMJ might be off), boredom, frustration, etc. Maybe she needs more tounge relief from the bit. Some horses gets very frustrated with a bit that goes off of mostly tounge pressure.
    11-13-2007, 10:48 AM
So what, maybe I should quit riding that's a pretty harsh statement
    11-13-2007, 11:02 AM
What he meant by that is if your horse, say has an issue with the bit or some other problem, if you think a bit seat will cure the issue, then you need to do some looking into yourself or your equipment before you go and take out a molar that the horse has had for millions of years. Sometimes he can be very blunt, he certainly doesn't beat around the bush, but I know he didnt' mean that EVERYONE should stop riding. It's true though, some people should not ride horses lol, but you seem savvy in that department. :) Does that make sense?
    11-13-2007, 11:29 AM
Guess this is a hotbed issue in horse dentistry. I was reading an aritcle yesterday about farriers sueing vets and equine dentists suing vets and everyone getting litigious about who can float a horses teeth. I'm sure there are differing opinions on more than just the horses mouth. My Vet doesn't remove the tooth and doesn't do excessive filing on the seat. I can see where it could be detrimental if done excessively. Just an opinion
    11-13-2007, 11:36 AM
Reminded me of this article I read a few months back.
    11-13-2007, 11:53 AM
Wow Sara wish I had thought of that one! I wonder what keeps them from swallowing it. Did you post this on the thread, I think it was Cambria stables who had a horse that was grinding its teeth?
    11-13-2007, 12:01 PM
Nah, I just remembered it, actually:P I don't know exactly how it works, just thought it was interesting at the time. My friends broodmare has recently started grinding her teeth and its an exscrutiating sound >_< Hope she doesn't start making a habit of it.
    11-13-2007, 12:37 PM
I am going to post it on that thread if its ok with you.

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