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Adjusting to grazing muzzle

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    Adjusting to grazing muzzle

    My overweight Morgan just started wearing a grazing muzzle today. I hung around the paddock for a while with him and I never saw him eat. He didn't seem stressed, but he was definitely irritated. He rubbed it on the fence, his legs or his buddy a lot and blew his nose a ton. I fed him a few handfuls of grass through the hole in the bottom, but never saw him eat on his own. How long does it take for horses to adjust to a muzzle?

    #2
    Hang in there. It took one of my horses a couple of weeks to finally figure it out and get over being mad about it. Even now, after several years of wearing grazing muzzles in the spring/summer/fall, my two geldings spend at least an hour trying to remove them from each other when I first put their muzzles on in the spring.

    Comment


      #3
      My mare never did adjust to the muzzle with a hole at the bottom. She wore it one day, stood at the fence the whole time, no eating , no drinking and then the next day ( and every one after that) I couldn't get near her at all with a halter .

      I was able to manage her for years after that un-muzzled but sadly it got to where she needed one to be out any length of time. I went to the Green Guard and just bought a traditional breakaway halter to go with it ( it was cheaper). To be honest she still hates it but she eats and drinks with it on and she has never attempted to get it off and we are on year #2. I can also walk right up to her and put it on.

      When I first put it on her she ran around for about 5 minutes and then put her head down and kept it there all day
      I would really encourage you to get a GG. It is just so much more open/ airy and more comfortable for the horse to wear ( IMHO) my horse can attest to that.

      Comment


        #4
        What brand of muzzle are you using? If you can get your guy to understand he CAN get some grass - maybe you grab a handful of grass, get him to stretch down to the ground and stuff it in the hole so he sees what is possible My guy wears a Best Friend (tiny hole) and he is just fine. My mare gets mad with a BF (rubbing on the fence, generally irritated) - she needs something not so restrictive -- a Tough One. I also give 10-15 hay pellets (orchard grass) and drop them in the bottom of their muzzle and hold my hand over the hole so they can fish around and get them. Trying to make it as tolerable as possible.

        You might need to try several brands to see what works for him.



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          #5
          It takes time. Some longer than others. They soon learn that the muzzle means turn out on grass (though limited) and they come to you to have it put on.

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            Original Poster

            #6
            Thanks everyone! He wore the Best Friends cob sized muzzle attachment on his halter. I borrowed a friend's cob to try on, but maybe the one I ordered was mismarked or they're making them smaller than they used to, because he came in with his muzzle hair rubbed and looking like he just got a fresh clip (I don't clip his muzzle). I'm hoping I can send the cob one back and I've just ordered the Flexible Filly one from Thinline. It is so much lighter and more breathable. I think he's going to be much happier in it. Well...as happy as he can be in a muzzle.

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              #7
              Well, you can have the GG muzzle I got for my Morgan, the use of which only lasted a couple weeks. I couldn't deal with the confusion in his eyes and him looking to me to come back and take the weird thing off. He's a senior and if he wants to eat grass, he gets to eat grass. He is my knight in shining armor and yes, it will break my heart if he gets laminitis, but, when I'm old, I want to be allowed to eat whatever I want whenever I want, even if it shortens my life. So, he gets the same plan (for better or for worse) and the muzzle is gathering dust in the garage.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by SharonA View Post
                Well, you can have the GG muzzle I got for my Morgan, the use of which only lasted a couple weeks. I couldn't deal with the confusion in his eyes and him looking to me to come back and take the weird thing off. He's a senior and if he wants to eat grass, he gets to eat grass. He is my knight in shining armor and yes, it will break my heart if he gets laminitis, but, when I'm old, I want to be allowed to eat whatever I want whenever I want, even if it shortens my life. So, he gets the same plan (for better or for worse) and the muzzle is gathering dust in the garage.
                It is hard for me to put it on my mare as well. I know she hates it, but having laminitis is so much worse. Hopefully your old guy will be ok for a long , long time. This year my girl can graze un muzzled for 3-4 hours before its has to go on so that helps.

                Comment


                  #9
                  VTMorgan06 I didn't know about the Flexible Filly - thanks for the heads up and idea. Always looking to improve the muzzling idea. Give us an update later ok? Want to know how it's going.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Ditto PaddockWood's suggestion to put a treat in the muzzle. I put a Bob's Sweet Stripes peppermint in the bottom of my 2 geldings' Greenguard muzzles. They nearly knock me over trying to shove their noses into the muzzles!

                    Comment

                      Original Poster

                      #11
                      Well the Thinline Flexible Filly muzzle arrived today...and it's going back tomorrow. I just could not get it to work for him. It is so cumbersome and bulky, no matter how much I adjusted the muzzle and his halter I just couldn't get it to fit in the right place. He honestly looked like he had a jellyfish latched onto his muzzle. I will say, it's super light, but it's huge (cob size on my 15 hand morgan with a refined head). After 30+ minutes of adjusting I thought I had it in a suitable place, but I was concerned that he could step on it, which he promptly did while furiously trying to rub his nose on his leg. He stepped on it 3 different times and broke the zip ties.

                      So I'm 0/2 on the muzzle front. I just ordered the GreenGuard and then I'm going to throw in the towel. I think it's going to be a bit before the GreenGuard gets to me because of the holiday weekend, but I'll let you all know how it works. Fingers crossed!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by VTMorgan06 View Post
                        Well the Thinline Flexible Filly muzzle arrived today...and it's going back tomorrow. I just could not get it to work for him. It is so cumbersome and bulky, no matter how much I adjusted the muzzle and his halter I just couldn't get it to fit in the right place. He honestly looked like he had a jellyfish latched onto his muzzle. I will say, it's super light, but it's huge (cob size on my 15 hand morgan with a refined head). After 30+ minutes of adjusting I thought I had it in a suitable place, but I was concerned that he could step on it, which he promptly did while furiously trying to rub his nose on his leg. He stepped on it 3 different times and broke the zip ties.

                        So I'm 0/2 on the muzzle front. I just ordered the GreenGuard and then I'm going to throw in the towel. I think it's going to be a bit before the GreenGuard gets to me because of the holiday weekend, but I'll let you all know how it works. Fingers crossed!
                        It really shouldn't be so difficult. I hope you have better luck with the GG. I like that it has buckle straps that are easy to adjust. I bought extra just in case but so far haven't needed to replace them.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Don't know where you ordered your Greenguard muzzle, but GG Equine (https://www.gg-equine.com/ ) has excellent information and videos about fitting, introducing the muzzle, common problems, etc. I found these to be very helpful when I introduced my horse to this muzzle. It took my horse a while to accept the muzzle, so don't give up too soon.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            None of the horses originally like it but they will adjust. Make sure they are safe and then walk away. Trust me, it is MUCH better than laminitis!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I find it so much easier to put on that horrible muzzle considering laminitis FEELS like having your fingernails torn off. Cannot imagine that feeling and don't want my horses to either.

                              I say horrible because I've had other horse people say muzzles are cruel. If muzzles are cruel than what is the word for laminitis?

                              Comment

                                Original Poster

                                #16
                                So the Green Guard muzzle arrived, and oh my goodness, what an incredible product! I was hesitant at first because of the price ($100), but it's worth every penny. The other 2 muzzles I tried previously didn't work for him, but within 5 minutes of wearing the Green Guard he was happily eating and drinking. I'm so glad I got it. I felt terrible at first about using a muzzle at all, but he is just not phased by it at all. If anyone is in the market for a muzzle, seriously consider this one.

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  Had to muzzle a horse for the first time this year. She wore it for the first 3 weeks then one day was itching, got caught on something, and pulled back and broke it. Put a new one on her, 2 days later it was broke too. She figured that out way too fast.

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by VTMorgan06 View Post
                                    Well the Thinline Flexible Filly muzzle arrived today...and it's going back tomorrow.
                                    I'm so glad I'm not the only one! I don't know how it's supposed to work, but suffice to say, it didn't.

                                    I have the Best Friend Have a Heart muzzle for my mare (the one with the strap from the nose of the basket to the side rings), and got the fleece padding pieces for it as well. She dives into it when I hold it up (yay for cookies!) and it stays on without any problems.

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by VTMorgan06 View Post
                                      So the Green Guard muzzle arrived, and oh my goodness, what an incredible product! I was hesitant at first because of the price ($100), but it's worth every penny. The other 2 muzzles I tried previously didn't work for him, but within 5 minutes of wearing the Green Guard he was happily eating and drinking. I'm so glad I got it. I felt terrible at first about using a muzzle at all, but he is just not phased by it at all. If anyone is in the market for a muzzle, seriously consider this one.
                                      I told you so !! I think in this case it is ok to say that

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Buy the cheapest basket type you can find, and cut the grazing hole larger in the bottom till horse "gets it", then switch to a muzzle with small hole.

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