What Bit Should I use? - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By PintoTess
  • 1 Post By longshot
  • 2 Post By RunSlideStop
  • 2 Post By Palomine
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 8 Old 06-19-2012, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: silver lake, mn
Posts: 48
• Horses: 4
What Bit Should I use?

I recently bought a 2 and a half year old mare. I have only trained horses that were started never thought about starting my own but the opportunity came and I felt ready. She was starved her first few months of age and the girl that saved her wanted to find her a good home. I love this mare the two weeks I've had her. I can lunge her, saddle her, bathe her, she follows me everywhere. I feel as though she is really sensitive in the face and I want an light bit in lack of better terms. I plan on eventually gaming her but until then I want to start her off super soft. Any recommendations? Brands would really help! Thanks!
brookesloveofbaker is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 8 Old 06-19-2012, 05:12 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: NSW, Australia
Posts: 8,167
• Horses: 3
Just a plain snaffle!! Some horses are started in a sweet-iron snaffle. Mine was started in a snaffle with copper rollers in it. But deffinately, just a plain old snaffle. It is the safest in my opinoion. Some could even use a rubber bit. Ive heard good things about them as well.
Conrad And Freddie likes this.

Cross Country- The act of hurling yourself and your equine partner at a stationary object with poise and grace while attempting to survive...
PintoTess is offline  
post #3 of 8 Old 06-19-2012, 05:15 PM
Join Date: May 2012
Location: middle of nowhere
Posts: 279
• Horses: 0
I would start with a good rawhide bosal, that is me. I don't want them to begin with a bit. Now that said, I don't trail ride with a bosal, some do and more power to them. Before a hoses get's in the trailer to go somewhare that they will be ridden the are fully used to a snaffle. I like large d ring snaffles, but I don't use any leverage bit while training. As they progress I will use a reining bit but only if they respond to very light pressure.. Just my 2/100ths of a dollar
loosie likes this.

My Vet and Farrier are currently splitting my childeren's inheritance.
longshot is offline  
post #4 of 8 Old 06-19-2012, 05:18 PM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 664
• Horses: 0
I agree. A simple snaffle or french link will be fine. Some like the fat rubber mouth bits, but I have never used them so I can't say. Stay away from anything with shanks, Dr. Bristol's (which look like french links, so pay attention!), and anything with a twist. Generally I dislike rollers and keys as they are distracting. Sweet iron seems to work better to me than copper or plain mouth bits.

My all time favourite is my loose ring sweet iron snaffle. Hard to beat it on any horse.

ETA: Though I love longshot's response and prefer bosals, they should be used by experienced hands only. A young horse can easily misunderstand if they aren't used properly, just like traditional hackamores and the like. I advise working with a professional.
Palomine and Skyseternalangel like this.

I have said what I have said. I have not said what I have not said.

Last edited by RunSlideStop; 06-19-2012 at 05:20 PM.
RunSlideStop is offline  
post #5 of 8 Old 06-19-2012, 05:29 PM
Palomine is offline  
post #6 of 8 Old 06-22-2012, 03:28 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 13,526
• Horses: 0

Of course she's got a sensitive face - they all have, particularly their mouth, even the ones who have learned to or reacted by bracing against pressure.

I agree with longshot - I don't like to put a bit in a horse's mouth until they(& their rider) are skilled & softly responsive at yielding to pressure & being ridden in a halter/bosal/other form of bitless bridle.

I wouldn't be doing much in the way of lunging or riding of a 2.5yo anyway & would wait a couple of years until they're more mature.
loosie is offline  
post #7 of 8 Old 06-22-2012, 09:11 AM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: MN
Posts: 561
• Horses: 0
Originally Posted by PintoTess View Post
Just a plain snaffle!! Some horses are started in a sweet-iron snaffle. Mine was started in a snaffle with copper rollers in it. But deffinately, just a plain old snaffle. It is the safest in my opinoion. Some could even use a rubber bit. Ive heard good things about them as well.
I agree. And make sure the bit has copper. It has a good taste and it is just a little extra for a young horse.
cowboy bowhunter is offline  
post #8 of 8 Old 06-22-2012, 10:08 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Missouri
Posts: 16,846
• Horses: 1
The thinner the bit, the more sensitive. The thicker, the more mild.

HOWEVER, the palate of the horse (size of their mouth, how low or high the roof of their mouth is) is dependent on what thickness to bit to get.

French link or 3 jointed bits work off of tongue pressure. Regular snaffles work off of bar pressure and tongue pressure.

MY horse prefers a french link. He used to be in a snaffle.

The type of ring is important too. Loose ring has nothing for the horse to brace against, but can pinch (hence bit guards) or slide through their mouth. Eggbutt, half cheek, full cheek, and dee all give LATERAL pressure. Some more than others. This is like a hand pushing on one side of their face to help them with steering. Some like this aid and later transfer them to a loose ring so they don't brace.

It's up to you. Personally I think starting with a halter and rope, then progressing up to a side pull, and finally a bit would work really well.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
Skyseternalangel is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome