Okay, put the bridle away and work on teaching your horse to lower his head in a halter and lead rope.
You have two hands. One puts even pressure on his nose (where the noseband is) and then other puts even pressure on his poll/between ears.
Even pressure means if your horse is bracing, you apply as much pressure as he applies to you. NOT MORE, not less. When he starts to brace less, you let up as much. When he comes down, gently pressure and follow with your hands down.
When he can do this.. and ONLY when he can do this, use the rope and pull down as much as he is bracing. NOT more, not less. When he starts to let up, you let up.
Are you following me so far?
When he comes down, ease up on the pressure with BOTH hands and follow his head down with your hands.
Every time he does it right (comes down) praise him with a nice neck rub or face stroke (whichever he likes.)
When he can lower his head in two ways, work on a third way, even pressure on his poll only (same as he gives you) and his head should come down. Every time he gets it right, and you praise him (and at first it may take 10 minutes for his head to come down) he should get slightly ever so little more sensitive and brace less and less.
You can even assign a word "Down" to your action to teach him a fourth way.
Now ask yourself WHY he is avoiding the bridle. Maybe it's the bit. Do you clang it against his teeth, is it not sitting in his mouth right? Do you ride him with harsh hands? Do you go too fast so he ends up biting the bit? (Equivalent to you chewing on aluminum foil.. yeouch) Maybe you put the bridle on too rough. Maybe it pokes him in the eye. Maybe you work him too much instead of spending time with him.
Figure it out, work on teaching him to lower his head, and you'll end up both happy and less frazzled.
Check him for pain too, and when bridling a horse, always loop the leadrope around their jugular (where throat latch is) or clip the halter around their necks temporarily so they can't go anywhere (though I prefer the rope since halters take longer to remove.
"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
Last edited by Skyseternalangel; 05-19-2012 at 11:07 PM.