Issues with bitting and other stuff - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 53 Old 02-10-2019, 08:47 PM
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If her mouth looks OK...give her 1 - 2 extra days for more than a thin surface heal to have taken place.
The mouth can heal quickly because of blood supply to that area...but it still takes a few days for the underneath tissue to heal and fuse together well.
To soon will get you having to start all over again.



Hold her lip carefully back and look at the mouth groove and see if it looks wide enough for the bit you want to try...
Bits come in different diameters for the barrels...that is what the actual mouthpiece is called, the barrel.
If you read a catalog carefully you will often see a diameter mentioned about the sizing...
Each horse is different, hence why people who ride many horses can have many bits since one size does not fit all.
Once you bit her again check that groove and make sure there is room so the bit can move when she swallows or mouths the bit for comfort reasons...
If to tight...well, go walk 2 miles in a shoe 1 size to small and see how you feel...that would be your horses reaction too..it hurts. Same idea...
Good luck.
...
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post #12 of 53 Old 02-16-2019, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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Tried her in the D-ring, still started to bruised. Stopped as soon as i noticed it. I'm thinking it's because she's not used to the snaffle because she's been ridden in bits that had leverage before, not just the bar pressure of the snaffle. Trainer suggested I work her in a halter (in contained area) to get her more responsive, then move up to the bit.
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post #13 of 53 Old 03-22-2019, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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So I've been riding her bitless for a little while and she's going well (getting better at it). I tried a bit again today to see if it worked. It bruised her again! I only rode for about 15 mins and it was hurting her. It bruised even before she started pulling a little. She pushes hard against the bit whenever I give her the "stop" cue. I'm guessing it's because it hurts her. I used a french link O-ring. My trainer thinks the bit might be to big but she hasn't seen it yet. I think it's been a couple years since she had her teeth done, but I have to call the vet to check the records. I don't know if it's the teeth.

I was hardly putting pressure on the bit and it was not too high in her mouth. One or two wrinkles. Maybe her teeth are hitting it? She chews the bit a little but it's pretty much only if we're not going somewhere she wants to go. It's only one easy chomp at a time and not constant chewing.

I can try a rubber bit but I'm getting kind of frustrated with all this.

I don't know of anyone in the area who does bitting specifically, any ideas on where to try and find someone like that? Maybe the equine dentist?

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post #14 of 53 Old 03-22-2019, 09:32 PM
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So my horse is hard mouthed. I don't wanna comment on the bit sizing coz everyone else here pretty much taught ME about that haha. But mine used to realllllllllllllllllly lean on the bit at one point. Her teeth were ridiculously overdue (even tho I'd had her vetted and cleared for months on purchase -.-). She also had quite a head tilt but that's related to an old injury in her jaw. Things my instructor noticed during this period:

- she never foamed at the mouth (foaming is good, I then learned)
- she was always tight in the mouth, holding it clenched, NEVER relaxed
- when you applied pressure to halt she would heavily resist but when you released pressure she would ever so subtly grind her teeth (but only ever on release, as if relieved of pain). The bigger the pressure applied the bigger the grinding after
- she head tilted a lot but she we discovered TWO things later: she has an arthritic jaw on one side AND she had quite the ulcer from a sharp tooth
- all in all we all agreed (with the vet) that she was "running away" from the pain, trying to push against the bit to make it go away

One her pain was sorted and managed she was still in a habit of anticipating pain. So we had to soften her mouth which is as boring as it sounds - the moment she let's up she got some respite. Over time, talking months, and regular dentistry, shes so much better. In fact, I always give her the option of a verbal cue before using a physical so I can avoid overusing her mouth where possible. I look forward to other peoples responses as they are so helpful on here!
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post #15 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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I have a question.

Maybe it's the broken mouthpiece? When I rode her in a curb bit (just kind of for the heck of it) she did well. A little confused because she's used to more solid contact and not so much on the loose rein but she did well. And it did not bruise her mouth, whereas every single snaffle I have tried does. And it's not because she's pulling. She's always a little strong but there was no yanking or sawing on her mouth, nothing that should cause bruising.
The curb looks like this:


There are only two things I can think of that is different between this and the snaffles that would make a difference in her mouth bruising. The thickness isn't a factor because my snaffles of all different thickness didn't work. There's 1) the fact it uses leverage and not the direct pressure like the snaffle (though it still puts pressure on the bars?) and 2) it's not a broken mouthpiece. I think I can find out which one it is by using a Tom Thumb which she was ridden in before. If it begins to irritate her, it's probably the broken mouthpiece because in all other respects a Tom Thumb isn't any different from the curb I used.

(she still hasn't had her teeth done but isn't having any issues with her mouth other than bitting. Our truck had issues and has been in the shop for weeks)

My main questions are, how might the curb be not hurting her in comparison the the snaffle? How would the broken mouthpiece be possibly hurting her but not the mullen? Do those mouthpieces affect the teeth differently?

I have not tried a mullen mouth snaffle, but I want to. I'm just not sure how well she'll go in it. I could maybe get a type like a Myler that moves a little in the middle for clearer communication?

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post #16 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 03:59 PM
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Not all horses go well in a snaffle. It's a myth that they are the gentlest option-- a horse that roots at the reins in a snaffle but not in a curb will find the curb more comfortable. I know many horses who are happier and go better in a curb than in a snaffle. A jointed mouthpiece puts pressure on the bars, tongue, lips, and sometimes the palate. In a non-leverage bit, that pressure is the first the horse feels. With a curb bit, the horse feels the cue through the rotation of the bit, the curb strap/chain, and poll pressure before it really applies pressure to the mouth. That 'signal' is what makes a soft, responsive horse. A mullen mouthpiece that your horse can carry on the tongue may be far more comfortable than a snaffle with jointed mouthpiece that puts pressure on the bars when you pull the reins. Horses have varying mouths, and what some find comfortable, others find painful, so trial and error is important.



A horse who finds a jointed snaffle uncomfortable is one I will try in a low-port, loose-cheeked curb bit. Usually they settle down and go much better in that.
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post #17 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 05:56 PM
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If your wish is to do direct reining like is done English style then find a mullen mouth bit with eggbutt rings so no pinch, a bit of turning assistance and the horse carries the bit not you carrying the horse on your arms..
They make a actual straight bar and ergonomic slightly rounded mouthpieces...
I have both styles. My one horse likes the straight my other horse likes slightly curved ..

But the mullen mouth will take the pressure off the mouth edges and bars and put more of the pressure on the tongue, a thick spongy material that might make the difference in comfort or sore mouth.
If you use a eggbutt ring bit there is no poll pressure like you get in the curb bit line...
Once you put a shank and a headstall attachment ring that sits above the barrel of the bit you added leverage to any bit...the degree of leverage can vary but leverage applied, period.


You might also look to see if your horse is happy with a Billy Allen mouthpiece...many horses enjoy this and it can be found in English, western...direct rein snaffle or curb rein styles...

The way it is constructed the bit moves independent each side.

...
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post #18 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 07:37 PM
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If she doesn't like a snaffle, she will be less than thrilled with a French link. The Mullen mouth might be the way to go. However, if you said she goes well bit less, why not stick with that?
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post #19 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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@horselovinguy I've been looking at the Billy Allen style bits. I like that they have a little more movement than just a straight metal bar. And It's either eggbutt, D-ring, or full-cheek for me. The full cheek sides get stuck on everything though.



@waresbear I'll certainly ride bitless more often, -like for trails- but she bends better in the bit. Dunno why but she does. And if I show English there are the rules about bits and all. She goes "ok" in a bitless setup. I'm kind of frustrated with her - we had a bad day today. She decided she didn't know what "whoa" meant and I just about wiped off while trying to lope the barrel pattern- she's not collected at the lope very well. (It could be the saddle though, tried something different) I want to find a good hackamore for barrel racing and playdays that isn't ridiculously strong.



@SilverMaple I tried to find one of those curbs in my bit box- didn't have one. But at this point I think I'll try a mullen mouth snaffle. She went really nicely in the curb. Except for her needing correction for being a barn sour brat I barely had to move the reins.

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post #20 of 53 Old 05-02-2019, 09:28 PM
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If you want to show, yes your horse has to be shown in a bit. I would try her in a ported snaffle and see how she goes.
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