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LisaCruize11 12-21-2012 08:09 PM

Chewing bit while riding
I've noticed the last few rides with my horse Cruize that he'll chew on the bit excessively when I ask him to go forward or collect or any kind of aid. I only have an eggbut French link snaffle in his mouth so it's nothing severe and it's the bit I've always used on him. Can this behavior be boredom? Frustration or just ignorance? Should I switch up his bit to a full cheek slow twist for a while until he quits this new habbit of his?? I've never on his face and my cues are always light touches since he doesn't need more. He chews so much at times that he completely ignore my aid and practically pull the reins out of my hands. Should I do more thinking/brain exercises, upward/downward transitions, circles and cirpentines. Even trotting poles?

Kayty 12-21-2012 09:10 PM

If he is crunching the bit and really chewing in an agitated way, the first thing I would do is get his teeth assessed by a qualified equine dentist.
Also look to discomfort in his body - teeth grinding often comes out as a symptom of a sore back or stomach ulcers.

Then look to how you are riding him. How are you asking for collection? Are you perhaps on his mouth a little more than ideal? Maybe your reins are bumping him in the mouth if you don't have enough contact.
Are you coming down hard on his back? Gripping your knees which then blocks his shoulder? Giving confused aids?

There are SO many possibilities for chewing of the bit that it is near impossible to narrow it down to one or two options from what information you have provided.

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