My horse has a snaffle bit but i don't think he likes it... - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Shenee View Post
oh also he used to be a kids leadline horse and his old owner used to ride him a fair bit so he is used to having a bit in his mouth.
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Just because he's used to having a bit in his mouth does not mean he's been taught to accept the bit.

What exactly is he doing that makes you think he doesn't like his current bit?
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post #12 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Shenee View Post
im currently using a two peice snaffle i think.. So you think i should try the eggbutt?
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Eggbutt is the ring type - not the mouth piece.
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post #13 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by DraftyAiresMum View Post
Just because he's used to having a bit in his mouth does not mean he's been taught to accept the bit.

What exactly is he doing that makes you think he doesn't like his current bit?
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uhm he doesnt let me put it in his mouth then when its in he trys getting it out... How would i teach him too accept it?? Thanks
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post #14 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:33 PM
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Sorry, I tend to call under four year olds colts ^_^ its good that he's a gelding.

If he is three year old and his owner has already ridden him a lot and used him for children, I doubt that he really has been TAUGHT to carry his bit with his tounge instead of to just let it sit there. He may be used to having one in his mouth, but the two things are actually quite different.

My next step after a french link would probably be the other 'extreme', a mullen mouth. I'd go for a full cheek or a D, and either sweet iron or copper to encourage him to salivate and make the bit more comfortable. Sweet iron/copper might be harder to find though, so stainless steel would be my next option. I also tend to have problems finding a 'cheaper' mullen mouth full cheek though, which may be a problem.

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post #15 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:36 PM
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That sounds more like he just isnt used to a bit and will likely react the same way with anything you use
Sometimes younger horses find a french link easier to deal with than than the single joint that can 'nutcracker' if they lean on it which many young horses will do and Happy Mouth do a shaped mullen mouth bit that I've found horses to like
There are some good rubber bits on the market that are softer on a green mouth than metal but if you use one keep a close eye on signs of it getting chewed.
Putting something that tastes nice on a bit will encourage shy horses - honey, apple juice etc. to accept having the bit in their mouth - gentle persuasion is better than force.
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post #16 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:37 PM
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What do you mean 'he doesn't like it'? What is he doing?
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post #17 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:50 PM
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Can you borrow some other bits and try them? Mia will get quite pissy about a 'mild' french link snaffle after a few rides, but has no problem with a 'harsh' waterford. And as others have pointed out, sometimes a horse just needs to learn how to carry a bit in his mouth so it won't bother him.

Also, where do you position it in his mouth? You might try a little higher or lower. Sometimes a one hole difference in the bridle makes a big difference to the horse.

The gag bit I currently use with Mia is like this, only with a copper mouthpiece:



She seems to 'understand' it well. When I realized how a gag bit functions, I set it aside because it seems to ME like it would be confusing - but I couldn't get around the fact that she seems very content and responsive with it.

I only own 3 horses. I'm not near smart enough to predict what will work for a given horse. All I know is to be flexible, borrow and try different things, and see what clicks with the horse. Like I said, 2 of my horses don't seem to give a rat's rear about the type of bit. But for 1 of the 3, it is important. Horses! Go figure...

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post #18 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:53 PM
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^^That's not a gag, it's an elevator.

Has he had enough time to get used to carrying it? Is he properly trained in the bridle? Does it fit? A bit that's too big is kind of like a boot that's too bit, a real annoyance. Experiment with one piece bits, three piece and see if he likes them.
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post #19 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Endiku View Post
Sorry, I tend to call under four year olds colts ^_^ its good that he's a gelding.

If he is three year old and his owner has already ridden him a lot and used him for children, I doubt that he really has been TAUGHT to carry his bit with his tounge instead of to just let it sit there. He may be used to having one in his mouth, but the two things are actually quite different.

My next step after a french link would probably be the other 'extreme', a mullen mouth. I'd go for a full cheek or a D, and either sweet iron or copper to encourage him to salivate and make the bit more comfortable. Sweet iron/copper might be harder to find though, so stainless steel would be my next option. I also tend to have problems finding a 'cheaper' mullen mouth full cheek though, which may be a problem.
lol all good yeh thanks.. So how would i get him accepting it ?
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post #20 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 01:00 PM
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Is this what your gelding looks like when he's trying to get the bit out of his mouth? If so, he hasn't learned to accept it.




Excuse that bridle, it was my junk bridle that I use to get new ponies used to being bitted. It fit her terribly. This is my mare as a four year old, being mouthed. This was her 2nd time being bitted and she was still learning what to do with it. What I did, is I would offer it to her with a sliver of stredded carrot (her favorite treat) under it, so she could only take the carrot if she took the bit. The second the bit went in her mouth, so did the carrot. I would leave it for a few minutes without messing with her, then take it off. The second she released the bit, another piece of carrot went into her mouth. I only did that the first few times, just to make sure she understood the bit wasn't bad. Make sure you don't hit his teeth with the bit. He might be reacting to that.

I also spent a lot of time lunging her while she wore the bit, with the lunge line attached to her halter, not her bridle. My trainer told me to make the bridle become just 'another thing' that meant we were going to have a normal day. I even went out to catch her with my bridle instead of the halter sometimes, and we went on trail walks with it on, groomed with it on, etc. Soon she realized the bit didnt mean scary new things, and she started to even look for the bit when I came to get her.

At that point, I had already done all of her ground work. She already knew to yield to pressure on her poll, nose, etc- so I then taught her to yield to pressure on her mouth. If I applied light pressure (on the ground) to the right, I waited until she moved her head a little in that direction. Then I released. I did this in all directions, Back, up, dwn, side to side.

I honestly think your best bet after that step, is to find a trainer to help you. it sounds like your boy has a lot of gaps in his training.

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be in your journey, but not all of
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Last edited by Endiku; 03-14-2013 at 01:04 PM.
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