The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 31
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2008
    Location
    Albuquerque
    Posts
    54

    Default The Tongue

    I'm beside myself.

    My talented 5 yr mare started poking her tongue out of her mouth last week. There were some things that happened that I'm going to detail below. Please bear with me, this will be long.

    1) She's been under saddle almost a year. She's been doing great, other than a few months of arguing over my leg, she's progressed very nicely and is now a solid training/first level horse. She still has some green moments. I've taken it very slow with her despite her talent because she's sensitive and emotional.

    2) She's been ridden by a pro once a week--he's been great and loves her. He helps me develop a plan for working her, what she should be practicing, and helps me teach new things. We just introduced a little shoulder fore.

    3) I also work with a trainer from Germany who comes for two month stretches. During those periods, I ride in lessons once or twice a week in addition to her sessions with Sean.

    4) I've also introduced her to jumping, using a H/J trainer who is good with young horses (over fences--see below for more detail).

    Here's what's happened: A couple of weeks ago, this trainer was riding her. She got excited by a nearby horse calling to her. The trainer got off and started to longe her (no side reins, line attached only to inside bit ring) in a crazy galloping circle around and around. Then she put up a jump and longed her over that. She spent a LOT of time working on the left and my mare was stubborn about picking up the left lead. (Don't ask me why I didn't intervene. I'm kicking myself repeatedly already).

    She got back on, and worked her over a few small jumps. She was more attentive, but not her usual self. And this trainer was trying really hard to get her to canter to jumps (especially on the left).

    The next serious ride (I did ground work and trail rode her for a couple of days after that) was with Sean, her regular trainer. I was watching and I noticed a little sliver of pink on the left side. The next ride was the same--only more tongue. Gradually for the past week it's gotten worse. It's only when I take contact with the left rein. If I leave it slack, she keeps her tongue in. If I add a lot of left leg when her tongue is out, she will suck it back in.

    She had her teeth done in April. She goes in a big fat hollow-mouth French link. I looked under her tongue and at her gums there are some very red spots particularly under her tongue and on the sides of her bars--I've never spent a lot of time looking in her mouth (won't make that mistake again), so I have nothing to compare it to, except my other horses, neither of whom have red spots (black, but not red).

    I have an appointment with the vet this week for a mouth check.

    It has been an intense few months for her. I'm considering giving her a month-long (or longer) vacation to see if she forgets about this, or, if she's sore, has time to fully heal.
    Any ideas? Suggestions? Should I continue to work her in a halter or Bitless? Does this sound like a pain reaction or a training issue or both? Give her a big vacation? Change bits? To what?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    15,268

    Default

    check her bit isnt hanging to low in her mouth
    2nd any trianer that attaches the lunge to the same side they lunging from isnt worth p in a pot
    it should be attached either over the poll to the other side or under the chin to the other side
    otherwise your going to create more problems for yourself

    look at my helpful links pages they on a sticky above and then go to the bottom
    it has info on how to lunge and long rein



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2007
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    1,089

    Default

    Also check for a TMJ problem which could be addressed by a chiro.
    "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht



  4. #4
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2009
    Location
    The Left Coast
    Posts
    3,318

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by goeslikestink View Post
    any trianer that attaches the lunge to the same side they lunging from isnt worth p in a pot
    it should be attached either over the poll to the other side or under the chin to the other side
    otherwise your going to create more problems for yourself
    I learned how to lunge from the person who (literally) wrote the manual on lungeing. The lunge line should be attached to the inside bit ring. Having said that, however, I have had other expert advice to attach over the head. Not to hijack the thread or anything, but if you really think about it, what would cause more pressure/pain in the horse's mouth? As a compromise between the two schools, I use a D-ring when I lunge.

    But getting back to the topic, I've known horses that loll their tongue as a resistance, and some who are probably doing it as a pain response. But what kind of pain, I don't know, because with the one horse, all types of bits were used, a flash, a crank, a drop noseband, you name it. The horse had really bad x-rays but was not lame.

    So based on that, doesn't it make sense that if it's mouth pain related, the lolling would stop with a bitless bridle? But continue even bitless if it's a resistance to pressure?

    I sympathize totally with your plight, eesterson. That would be devastating if it continued.
    2012 goal: learn to ride like a Barn Rat

    A helmet saved my life.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 15, 2008
    Location
    Orlean, Va
    Posts
    2,055

    Smile Janek Vluggen, d.o.

    Your horse started out with some problems to the left before things got worse. Sometimes the mouth/tongue issue comes from the other end of the body with pinched spinal nerves, stuck joints, displaced ovaries, adhesions or other issues. I have been going through this with one of my greenies and osteopathic work is what has made a huge difference, plus several different equine dentists until I got a guru. There were a number of issues. Take a look at Janek Vluggen, d.o. equine. www.vluggeninstitute.com/

    He has a US base in Texas that can help you locate a clinic near you. www.thewholehorse.com

    He has been extraordinary at solving inexpensively very difficult cases. He trains vets world wide. He also works with dentists and physical therapists.

    pm me if you want more detail.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2007
    Posts
    53

    Default

    Sometimes it may not be pain related at all, could be stress related, or they are just very oral. I have a horse that licks everything, and she can get a little silly with her tongue at times when I ride. It could be something that happened from stress and now has turned into a habit. It like us biting our nails, or sticking our tongue out whenever we are thinking really hard about something.

    Just another thought.

    Letting a horse run very fast on a lunge line is scary to me for the sake of the horses legs not their mouth.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    15,268

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TheHorseProblem View Post
    I learned how to lunge from the person who (literally) wrote the manual on lungeing. The lunge line should be attached to the inside bit ring. Having said that, however, I have had other expert advice to attach over the head. Not to hijack the thread or anything, but if you really think about it, what would cause more pressure/pain in the horse's mouth? As a compromise between the two schools, I use a D-ring when I lunge.

    But getting back to the topic, I've known horses that loll their tongue as a resistance, and some who are probably doing it as a pain response. But what kind of pain, I don't know, because with the one horse, all types of bits were used, a flash, a crank, a drop noseband, you name it. The horse had really bad x-rays but was not lame.

    So based on that, doesn't it make sense that if it's mouth pain related, the lolling would stop with a bitless bridle? But continue even bitless if it's a resistance to pressure?

    I sympathize totally with your plight, eesterson. That would be devastating if it continued.
    if one is to attached the lunge rein from the same side ones lunging then if the horse pulls he/she has the advanatge-- the other aspect of it is that the bit ring and bit is pull through the mouth so not wise to attach the lunge from the same side you lunging at

    also the horse will advade ie tongue out as a measure by him/her to stop the bit from being pulled out of his/her mouth-- then it become a learnt thing of advasion



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2005
    Location
    Northeast
    Posts
    10,192

    Exclamation

    Quote Originally Posted by TheHorseProblem View Post
    I learned how to lunge from the person who (literally) wrote the manual on lungeing. The lunge line should be attached to the inside bit ring. Having said that, however, I have had other expert advice to attach over the head. Not to hijack the thread or anything, but if you really think about it, what would cause more pressure/pain in the horse's mouth? As a compromise between the two schools, I use a D-ring when I lunge.

    But getting back to the topic, I've known horses that loll their tongue as a resistance, and some who are probably doing it as a pain response. But what kind of pain, I don't know, because with the one horse, all types of bits were used, a flash, a crank, a drop noseband, you name it. The horse had really bad x-rays but was not lame.

    So based on that, doesn't it make sense that if it's mouth pain related, the lolling would stop with a bitless bridle? But continue even bitless if it's a resistance to pressure?

    I sympathize totally with your plight, eesterson. That would be devastating if it continued.
    I don't know who you think wrote the manual on longeing, and I know that longeing off the inside bit ring is considered acceptable in the USDF longeing manual, but I do know it was never espoused by Podhjasky, in his book "the Complete Training of Horse and Rider" written ca.1965. I had an original copy til I lent it to who knows and it never returned. I also know I consider it very poor technique, and a very good way to trash a bridle if used on the wrong horse.

    I would rethink your "good with young horses" h/j rider.

    As far as the tongue goes, if no physical causes surface, I would continue to ride her forward, into a very light and well balanced hand. Correct any crookedness from behind. Try to focus on the back end. You already said you observed the problem went away as she went more forward.
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep. 24, 2008
    Posts
    1,668

    Default

    Recently, I had a few mouth problems with my mare as well...and then suddenly tiny canine teeth popped out on her lower jaw. Very unusual in mares, but there they were.

    After they settled down, her mouth got much quieter. Having a vet take a good look in her mouth would also be my first step.

    Good luck!

    NJR



  10. #10
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2009
    Location
    The Left Coast
    Posts
    3,318

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by merrygoround View Post
    I don't know who you think wrote the manual on longeing, and I know that longeing off the inside bit ring is considered acceptable in the USDF longeing manual, but I do know it was never espoused by Podhjasky, in his book "the Complete Training of Horse and Rider" written ca.1965. I had an original copy til I lent it to who knows and it never returned.
    Gerhard Politz wrote it.

    I just checked my copy of Complete Training--it's a first edition! And I borrowed it from a friend ten years ago. Oops! But we're still friends. Maybe she doesn't want it back???

    All time best horse book is My Horses, My Teachers. I've read it many, many times.
    2012 goal: learn to ride like a Barn Rat

    A helmet saved my life.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2000
    Posts
    24,408

    Default

    "Who wrote the book on Longeing"

    Lots of people have written lots of books on longeing. It's good to get riding lessons from someone who wrote a book on longeing.

    People usually get mad if someone says they have a riding problem because they need to change how they ride.

    It sounds like your horse started putting its tongue out after the longeing session which sounded pretty rough.

    Horse never put its tongue out before? Ever? Usually it is part of a pattern. If horse hasn't done this before, the mouth might be sore from that longeing session.

    It could also be just that the horse is the kind that likes to play with its tongue alot and does that when it gets fresh or excited.

    What seems to fix tongue problems regardless of how they arise is plain old...well...riding better. The better ride might keep the horse looser, more forward, more through the neck which tends to put the tongue back in the mouth. The old timers used to say 'you ride the horse's tongue into his mouth'.

    People do get mad if someone says, 'ride better', but working with a trainer and finding out different and better ways of doing things isn't always such a wrong idea.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul. 27, 2007
    Location
    Behind the Orange Curtain
    Posts
    9,694

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TheHorseProblem View Post
    Gerhard Politz wrote it.

    I just checked my copy of Complete Training--it's a first edition! And I borrowed it from a friend ten years ago. Oops! But we're still friends. Maybe she doesn't want it back???
    Ah, he, apparently, is not worth p in a pot then That's good to know!



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
    Posts
    14,469

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by merrygoround View Post
    I don't know who you think wrote the manual on longeing, and I know that longeing off the inside bit ring is considered acceptable in the USDF longeing manual,
    USDF Lungeing Manual (Edited by Gerhard Politz)

    Practical Directives for lungeing the horse;
    How to attach:
    1. It's strongly recommended that a lungeing cavesson is used. This is the least severe method. The line should be attached to the center ring or inside ring of the lungeing cavesson.
    2. There are times when lungeing without a cavesson is warranted; when it doesn't fit, or when the horse runs through it. You may also attach to the bit rather than the cavesson when long-reining and doing work in hand.
    3. If a lungeing cavesson is not used, the following are acceptable:
    a. Attach a leather thong to the end of the lunge line that will go through the inside bit ring and nose band together.
    b. Send line through inside bit ring, wrapping around the ring once, then under the chin to the bit ring on the far side.
    c. Send line through inside bit ring, over the poll, down to the outside bit ring. This attachment acts like a gag. It is severe and should only be used for special circumstances.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2005
    Location
    Northeast
    Posts
    10,192

    Default

    Just reread it again. Inside bit ring when long reining. In that case hopefully there is a line attached to the outside bit ring too.

    I had a discussion with a USDF certified trainer over this, and she stated that the inside bit ring was acceptable according to the manual, I took a quick glance, saw the Figure3, pp7, didn't read the accompanying text. Bad! Bad!

    Still didn't change my mind as to considering it a bad idea. My apologies to GP, he never said it was so!
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 27, 2007
    Location
    Behind the Orange Curtain
    Posts
    9,694

    Default

    Oh, good, so GP IS worth p in a pot. I'm sure he'll be quite relieved to hear that!



  16. #16
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2009
    Location
    The Left Coast
    Posts
    3,318

    Default

    Next time I see him, I'll tell him he was right. As if I need to.
    2012 goal: learn to ride like a Barn Rat

    A helmet saved my life.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul. 27, 2007
    Location
    Behind the Orange Curtain
    Posts
    9,694

    Default

    Oh, that's right, you are at his barn aren't you? I was there on Sunday, gorgeous place! I'm quite envious!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2003
    Location
    Cocoa, Fla
    Posts
    4,065

    Default

    Intensive training lately followed by
    left lead issues
    followed by toungue issues

    Sounds like it could be that her topline has changed - so saddle may be pinching, hence left lead became sticky... so when jumper trainer worked her heavy on left lead she becme more sore and perhaps started leaning on left rein...(ask jumper trainer)

    That may havwe lead to too much rein from jumper trainer resulting in mouth sores resulting in toungue going out to compensate for mouth being sore.

    So start by looking at saddle, fix that, then chiro - looking at poll and jaw but also entire body, then restart the training. By that time any sore in her mouth may be healing or healed enough so toungue problem doesn't re-appear.

    Good for you for noticing the problem immediately. Hopefully you'll be able to get it fixed immediately.
    Sandy in Fla.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2008
    Location
    Albuquerque
    Posts
    54

    Default thanks

    Great input...

    I am having the vet/chiro out tomorrow. She does not stick her tongue out at all when not in the bridle--even when she's excited. I rode her in a bitless I borrowed from a friend (just a hack) and took her down the rode and she got plenty excited along the way, and no tongue was evident, so it's only when she has a bit in her mouth except...

    she does "play with it" when she's being playful with me when she's being groomed (sticks it out, puts it back in, mostly when she's bored) --also, she was a bottle baby and is very oral--always eating the lead rope, nibbling on this and that, and, get this, at five, she still "suckles" as she's eating--she'll take a few bits, then suckle-suckle-suckle, then another bite. Takes her FOREVER to finish her grain.

    BTW, I never meant to start an argument on longeing. In my view, I was appalled and should have stepped in. Correct or not, it was not the right thing for my horse at the time.

    I have no idea whether the longeing caused it--it was just one of many circumstances, and the timing was interesting--the first serious ride after that incident. To me, it almost looked like her tongue was swollen and it couldn't fit in her mouth anymore.

    Left-everything has always been a problem for us.. left bend, left lead. Even pre-riding. Bu thtis is the first tongue I've seen.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2005
    Location
    Northeast
    Posts
    10,192

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ambrey View Post
    Oh, good, so GP IS worth p in a pot. I'm sure he'll be quite relieved to hear that!
    I never said he wasn't I just disagreed with the poster who considered it a good idea, citing a "book " he had written.
    Last edited by merrygoround; Nov. 12, 2010 at 03:43 PM. Reason: Corrected ;) symbol ;)
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



Similar Threads

  1. Tongue Lolling is driving my instructor crazy
    By BaileyTW in forum Dressage
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: Aug. 8, 2008, 09:39 AM
  2. Tongue Over Bit -- Seeking Helpful Advice
    By NCSue in forum Dressage
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: Jul. 11, 2008, 09:40 PM
  3. Bizarre Accident?? Horse looses tongue
    By chiron in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 83
    Last Post: Jun. 3, 2008, 10:45 AM
  4. Bit for horse with large tongue / low palate
    By Incitatus in forum Dressage
    Replies: 41
    Last Post: Jun. 1, 2008, 04:46 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •