Horse won't open for the bit! Help! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 31 Old 07-28-2009, 06:45 PM
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I really like the methods of Chris Irwin. You should check out his sample videos at He is all about sending the right messages to the horses using their language. He might be able to help you out. His videos are easy to understand and can only help to improve your relationship with the horse. It isn't about force. It's about gentle persuasion using the right aids and correct body language. He talks about playing horse games by their rules and not using force to get what we want.

Check it out!
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post #12 of 31 Old 07-28-2009, 08:23 PM
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My friends horse did this when she got him. Try holding the bridle as if you are putting it on, and just stay there until he settles. Each time he freaks out, stop at that point and wait until he relaxes. Don't go on until he settles. It takes a while at first, and you need to be very reassuring, but it works. Pepper bridles great now.

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post #13 of 31 Old 07-28-2009, 09:12 PM
Green Broke
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I really like what riccil0ve posted!! Great advice!!

Let him move when he needs to! Dont force him to stand still it will only make it all the worse.
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post #14 of 31 Old 07-28-2009, 11:00 PM
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He's probably doing it because someone banged his teeth with the bit as they tried to force it in. How is he with your hand on top of his head?
I wouldn't back him into anything or try to force him into anything. Just keep asking patiently, and when you get it close be sure his mouth is partway open to keep from banging his teeth with the bit when you go to put it in. I get a lot of horses with that problem. 99% of the time, that's what the issue is.

Ask Often, Demand Nothing, and Reward Generously.
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post #15 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
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He isn't scared of the bridle... he just seems to not want it going past his teeth. He has a soft mouth. As soon as it pasts his teeth hes completely fine. :/

I rode him yesterday and I had help from the barn owner and she advised me to get his teeth checked, something deff bothered him before. If its not that.. she advises to get a rubber bit and if that STILL dosen't work.. a hackamore.

Hes a good boy though. Once its pass his teeth he just dosen't care no more and he rides very well.
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post #16 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 10:57 AM
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My guy isn't taking the bit too easily either. I really like the sugar/water idea! I may have to try that myself....
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post #17 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 11:12 AM
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That's what I'm trying to tell you - someone banged his FRONT teeth with the bit.

Ask Often, Demand Nothing, and Reward Generously.
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post #18 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 11:22 AM Thread Starter
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Thats a very good possibility.

What should I do about it? :/
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post #19 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 12:53 PM
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Just go at it slow. I put my arm over their head, with my forearm between their ears, with the headstall hanging from that hand. Get him used to that, and with the bit in your hand, use your thumb to get his mouth open.... if he doesn't want to open with just the thumb, set the bit on his lower lip - don't touch the teeth if you can help it. and use one, two, three, or all 4 fingers at the corner of his mouth to get him to open, then ease it in. You can perhaps practice getting him to open up without the headstall at all, too.
Around here, there are a lot of half assed 'trainers' that smack the bit on their front teeth, and try to force their mouth open by pulling the headstall so the bit pushes on the teeth to force them to open. It's got to hurt, and when they've been banged enough, they fight. I'll see if I can get some video to show what I mean.

Ask Often, Demand Nothing, and Reward Generously.
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post #20 of 31 Old 07-29-2009, 02:45 PM
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Try getting someone who is not aware of his bridling problem to do this. I accidently tacked up a riding school horse that wouldn't take his bit. I had no problems as I wasn't aware there was any until after a couple of times doing it fine, someone told me that no one else could do it as he would play up no end. Once I knew about the problem the horse sensed whatever I must have done differently (although I swear I did everything the same) and it was back to not taking the bit again! Your horse may snese something coming from you
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