Help, my horse rears while bridling!

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Help, my horse rears while bridling!

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  • Horse rears head while putting bit
  • Fighting bit while bridling

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    01-26-2012, 08:55 AM
Help, my horse rears while bridling!

I have a 7 yr old solid paint mare that I've had for a little over a month. She lunges well, she's very intelligent, but when it comes to tacking up, she fights all the way. She's snapped cross ties and when tied to the hitching post, she twists and pulls and rears and I'm afraid she'll hurt me or herself. It ends up being a two to three person job to get her bridle on her. Once it's on, she's extremely well behaved again. Her teeth are fine and no other health issues. I've tried flavoring the bit, I warm it up in my hands if it's cold. I can halter her with no problems. She has no problems with her ears being touched. Please help! Thanks!!!
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    01-26-2012, 09:23 AM
Green Broke
Did she have this problem when you bought her? Did you do a ride prior to buying her? Was she already tacked up? Is she a trail horse, or has she been shown? What do you want to do w/her? Have you tried a hackamore or bosal?We need a bit more information to help you.
    01-26-2012, 09:29 AM
She was originally used for trail and the girl who owned her last only rode her with a halter and bareback. She's never been shown and I plan on using her for trail/western pleasure. I've ridden her with just a halter before, but she tends to get very pushy and not want to listen. She listens well with a bit, it's just getting the bridle on and bit in her mouth. She stands well for saddling too. When I went to look at her before buying, she threw her head once, but didn't act up much for bridling. Now, she throws her head and rears. The girl that had her previously, used a tom thumb and she had problems. I have since switched to a dee-snaffle and she does well under saddle with it.
    01-26-2012, 09:33 AM
I would start over and reintroduce her to all tack and gear... jmho
Its better to start over then try to fix holes :) goodluck
    01-26-2012, 09:37 AM
Green Broke
Sounds like there may be some "holes" in her basic training. Be patient- some other members will probably be answering also, but sounds like she needs to start over w/all the issues she's having. Is this your first horse? What kind of horse experience have you had?
    01-26-2012, 09:41 AM
She is my first horse and I absolutely love her. I've been riding for about four years. I rode more when I was younger. Thank you for your help/advice!!!
    01-26-2012, 09:43 AM
Green Broke
I would get a second opinion on those teeth.

If nothing, re- introduce the bridle slowly..
    01-26-2012, 10:54 AM
Green Broke
So, I'm guessing she does this during the whole saddling up process?

One thing that might be needed, is taught how to stand tied.

Like others have said, re-introduce everything, but I'd do it in an inclosed pen on a lead line. Get her comfortable with you doing it without the aid of being tied, so she learns to stand still and deal with being saddled.

As far as bridle goes, I'd take it on and off, on and off, over and over until she stays calm one time, then the whole session for the day is over. Do it for several sessions. Then, teach her to put her head down. Lightly push on the top of her neck behind her poll with two fingers on either side, slowly increase the pressure until she puts her head down, even just a little, then immediately release pressure. Do this until you can lightly put pressure on top of her head and she puts it down. Then, introduce the bridle (if she is entirely calm with it now) and teach her to put her head down to the bridle.
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    01-26-2012, 11:08 AM
Thanks MangoRox87! She does stand tied well and does well for saddling, it's just bridling. I am going to start re-training with the bridle for now and hope it helps! Hopefully, with time, she'll get better!
    01-26-2012, 11:20 AM
I agree with kait18--start her over.
Originally Posted by fkonidaris    
She was originally used for trail and the girl who owned her last only rode her with a halter and bareback.
Typical. Don't fix the problem, just circumvent it. Your mare is LUCKY that you bought her and want to fix the problem. NOTHING sends horses down the path that ends in slaughter MORE than problems tacking and problems under saddle.
Originally Posted by fkonidaris    
I have since switched to a dee-snaffle and she does well under saddle with it.
Good switch. I'm kinda tired of the overused notion that snaffle bits hurt the horse. They've only been a staple for >2,000 years.
Ryan Gingerich starts his colts bridingl by making a bridle out of a soft leadrope. He knots the end of the leadrope to make a loop, then "Bridles" as you would and teaches his horses to open their mouths for the rope-bit. My 50 KMH gelding was awful with bitting, now much better, but I've designed February as "fix the bitting" with him. Since I go in the stall pretty much daily to muck out around him--good trust going on there!!=b--THAT's where I'll be working on bridling with him. IT CAN be done. First teach her to drop her head. Use a rope to put around her neck which you will use to lead her only a few steps, then you release. You can use food on the ground when you do this. Her stall is a very good place to train her to drop her head.
My QH, "Ro Go Bar" (1982-2009, RIP) was extremely head shy when I bought him as a 5yo. He turned into my babysitter, anybody could work with him, anybody could tack him up, anybody could ride and load him in a trailer.
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bridle, difficult, problem, rear, tacking

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