Hard mouthed pony
 
 

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Hard mouthed pony

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  • Pony has a hard mouth
  • Side pull for a hard mouthed horse

 
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    04-29-2010, 12:06 PM
  #1
Foal
Hard mouthed pony

Good morning everyone. I purchased a rescue pony who at one point in time was very well trained... so I am told... however that has gone down the tubes. This poor pony has been through a lot, apparently his previous owners did not feel the need to take care of him, he was so thin and had elf feet when I bought him. Thankfully, his feet are looking better, and he has put on some weight. He does what he wants, when he wants, and is very hard mouthed. I am going to attempt to ground drive him for a week or so, and see if this helps with the situation. However, I am open to all kinds of advice. I am also aware that it may just be that my children are not "strong enough" to be the leader in the situation, but I am too big for the little guy (he is about 500-600 and I am about 160, don't want to make him fallover dead, lol!) I know that I can end a lot of the running through the bit behavior with a hack, but I am very leary about a hack being in a child's hand, also neck reigning is not existing in this pony lol, and with stiff shanks, it is odd pull reigning. I use sidepulls and sidepull attachments for riding, however I did try a tomthumb snaffle on him, and that had no effect either. Thanks ahead of time for any advice!
     
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    04-29-2010, 01:20 PM
  #2
Foal
Ehh, I'm not so much for 'gadgets' and all. But in my opinion, a German Martingale does seem to be the nicest way to for a hard mouthed horse to come softer. Unlike side-reins, it makes the horse figure things out for himself, instead of forcing the horse to become softer.
     
    04-29-2010, 05:57 PM
  #3
Foal
Hmm, maybe I will have to try that. I have never tried use a German martengale
     
    04-29-2010, 06:38 PM
  #4
Foal
Yeah, it worked wonders for my horse as he used to have a super hard-mouth. After I lunged him in it a couple times before I rode, he was really soft in the mouth. It's not harsh on them at all - if you know how to use it. I would tell you how on here, but I'd recommend getting someone (who knows what they're doing when it comes to German Martingales) to show you how instead, because my instructions don't always make sense. XD
But if you want me to, I could get a video or some photos to show you how it's done. :]
     
    04-29-2010, 06:51 PM
  #5
Yearling
There are many bitless options available. One of the simplest and mildest is a noseband hackamore (http://farm1.static.flickr.com/41/86...20a4db4604.jpg) (http://images.auctionants.com/5-170460.jpg). It acts somewhat like a fullcheek snaffle but doesn't offer the option of evading the bit.
The next step up would be (IMO) and indian bosal (http://www.horsejunction.co.za/embed...l_4f03c239.jpg) (http://img.tweedehands.nl/f/normal/6...dian-bosal.jpg). The indian bosal is just a little firmer than the simple noseband because the bottom straps cross over each other and come out the opposite side through a ring.
If neither of those options seem strong enough to you, I would suggest using a crossunder bridle (http://www.naturalhoof.co.nz/picture...sbridle300.jpg) (http://www.actionridertack.com/catal...eather-web.jpg). This bridle acts like the indian bosal but with the addition of poll pressure as well, and more of a "push" when applying pressure to the reins. I personally use a Dr. Cook's bridle on my gelding who had mouth trauma.
I hope this was helpful.
     
    04-29-2010, 07:47 PM
  #6
Foal
Hey There---I agree, I tend to avoid training gagdets, but when little kids enter the picture and adults can't ride the pony, sometimes you have to use the gadgets to keep the kids safe. I would avoid using "gadgets" that require skill on the rider's side to use, such as draw reins or harder bits, as the kids may not understand how to use it properly. However, I would consider tools that simply correct the horse should it misbehave (indepedent of the rider) such as a martingale (german too, although this requires a bit of understanding from the rider's part, is it gives the rider much more leverage---still, if the child is somewhat experienced, you can work them through this). I would also encourage checking out a Chambon which works completely independently of the rider, but is similar in concept to a german martingale. It IS important to have someone knowledgeable show you how to fit it properly to your horse, as if put on too tight, can result in panicking your pony and/or placing constant pressure on the bit which is not wanted!! I'd also recommend that you use this while ground driving or on a lunge line first so that you can get a feel for how your pony reacts in it before putting a child on him.
     
    04-29-2010, 08:03 PM
  #7
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by huntergirl84    
Hey There---I agree, I tend to avoid training gagdets, but when little kids enter the picture and adults can't ride the pony, sometimes you have to use the gadgets to keep the kids safe. I would avoid using "gadgets" that require skill on the rider's side to use, such as draw reins or harder bits, as the kids may not understand how to use it properly. However, I would consider tools that simply correct the horse should it misbehave (indepedent of the rider) such as a martingale (german too, although this requires a bit of understanding from the rider's part, is it gives the rider much more leverage---still, if the child is somewhat experienced, you can work them through this). I would also encourage checking out a Chambon which works completely independently of the rider, but is similar in concept to a german martingale. It IS important to have someone knowledgeable show you how to fit it properly to your horse, as if put on too tight, can result in panicking your pony and/or placing constant pressure on the bit which is not wanted!! I'd also recommend that you use this while ground driving or on a lunge line first so that you can get a feel for how your pony reacts in it before putting a child on him.
I would agree with your post, but I'm not such a big fan of riding with gadgets. With the German Martingale, you don't even have to ride in it - ever. Unless the horse has doesn't have much of a brain, they generally get the idea that they need to give to the bit whenever they have a saddle and bridle on them.
     
    04-29-2010, 09:32 PM
  #8
Foal
I suggest you remouth the pony' long reining can cause many problems Search John O'leary on google or you tube. He has many dvd's you can watch on his website as well as on you tube and you can purchase the training dvd's !! He's a brilliant Australian trainer that is extremely helpfull check him out! Gadgets only mask a problem until they adjust to the gadget and then find a way to brace against this gadget also. Imo
Good luck :)
     
    04-30-2010, 09:57 AM
  #9
Foal
Thank you to everyone who has responded to my question. You have all given me some different ideas to try if my ground driving doesn't get him into shape. I to try to avoid training gadgets as well as bits. However, if I do use any, such as the german martingale, I will be sure to get some help with it (as I am not familiar with it) and I will also look into training videos.

I have had success in the past with ground driving, but something tells me this pony is very strong willed, lol!
     
    04-30-2010, 10:25 AM
  #10
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by hudson6393    
Thank you to everyone who has responded to my question. You have all given me some different ideas to try if my ground driving doesn't get him into shape. I to try to avoid training gadgets as well as bits. However, if I do use any, such as the german martingale, I will be sure to get some help with it (as I am not familiar with it) and I will also look into training videos.

I have had success in the past with ground driving, but something tells me this pony is very strong willed, lol!
Thank you for making sure you get help if you do decide to use the German Martingale. It is just about the only gadget I use on the horses and ponies I work with. I know much too many people who get this huge ego with themselves just because they've ridden in draw reins or whatever. Actually some people think that just because they have been around horses for such-and-such amount of years that they don't need help with it.

I've had a few strong-willed ponies, too. My trainer at the time (who will NEVER be my trainer again), had me try every single gadget you could imagine on one of them. Chambones, side-reins, draw-reins, etc. Nothing worked on him. Then once I switched trainers, she showed me the German Martingale - how to use it correctly, how it should not be used, how to figure out how tight it should be depending on the horse and his size/temperament, and other important things. I would never ride in a German Martingale, or any other gadget for that matter (but that's obvious, anyway.) Anywhoo, the pony was much better behaved with the bit from then on.
     

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