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Dover Neck Stretcher?

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  • Dover Neck Stretcher?

    Has any body used the dover neck stretcher? Did you get good results? Bad results? The barn i used to ride at used them for a while and i have been debating on getting one for my ottb to help with her head set, but worried that she could get scared from it....any thoughts?
    Nothing better than an OTTB.... Just Plan Partners,Penny, you have stolen my heart<3

    http://secondchancethoroughbreds.org

  • #2
    I personally have not used one, but I have many friends that have used it on their OTTBS and seen great success! I watched the mare go around on the lunge in one and I definitely want to get one of my own now.
    Calm & Collected, 13, OTTB
    Forrest Gump (Catasauqua) , 17, OTTB
    Little Bit Indian, 29, TB
    Owner of Spur of the Moment, Custom made spur straps! Find us on Facebook

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    • #3
      I've used it for my over reactive TB's. I like it adjusted "loosely" since it encourages them to drop, but doesn't force the set. And...especially with the freaky Tb's that sometimes dont' do well with side reins/martingales because of the "force" aspect. My one older mare was very very very sensitive and lunging in side reins she'd just yo-yo, even the rubber donut ones, she went nicely in this.

      You do have to be careful what type of horse wears it, and that its adjusted loosely and you are driving them from behind. I would never use it on my 5 year old since she already has a tendency to curl behind the vertical and this would encourage it. That and she does fine in regular ol side reins.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Jumper_girl221 View Post
        I've used it for my over reactive TB's. I like it adjusted "loosely" since it encourages them to drop, but doesn't force the set. And...especially with the freaky Tb's that sometimes dont' do well with side reins/martingales because of the "force" aspect. My one older mare was very very very sensitive and lunging in side reins she'd just yo-yo, even the rubber donut ones, she went nicely in this.

        You do have to be careful what type of horse wears it, and that its adjusted loosely and you are driving them from behind. I would never use it on my 5 year old since she already has a tendency to curl behind the vertical and this would encourage it. That and she does fine in regular ol side reins.
        Exactly this, don't use it until your horse is no longer a green bean. You want them to learn self carriage as difficult as that is to wait for.

        That being said, I have used them on greenies but like Jumper said it resulted in curling which was impossible to correct. What a headache.

        Sorry to say but ride correctly, encourage forward and suppleness, (circles, serpentines, transitions), and eventually, key word being 'eventually', when your horse begins to accept the contact and know his job, he will begin to look for the stretch.

        As a tip- encouraging stretching by finishing your ride on a nice loopy rein trot. Very very little contact and drive him forward with your leg. Once they learn it feels good, they will want to do it.
        http://dotstreamming.blogspot.com/

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        • #5
          Ive used one before when I was catch riding a hot TB for a short time and the owner wanted her horse to go in it. He was spooky and she thought the stretcher kept his head down and more focused. Not really sure about that but when I rode him without it once, his head did fly up but I think its because no one ever taught him to stretch and he was just used to bracing against it.

          So, Im not really a fan. Every piece of equipment has its purpose but I think you can get results without gimmicks if you work hard at it.

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          • Original Poster

            #6
            Thanks for the info. Shes not hot really at all and i can ride her with a really loose rein. Sometimes i ride her in draw reins and thought the neck stretcher would just be a little easier but would achieve the same thing? I would keep it really loose just so she doesnt brace against it but keep it as a reminder
            Nothing better than an OTTB.... Just Plan Partners,Penny, you have stolen my heart<3

            http://secondchancethoroughbreds.org

            Comment


            • #7
              Not a big fan of them. To me, they seem to result in a "compressed neck' with that ugly dip in front of the withers. I like that spot to be up and stretched.
              Rest in peace Claudius, we will miss you.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by JumpingAddict93 View Post
                Thanks for the info. Shes not hot really at all and i can ride her with a really loose rein. Sometimes i ride her in draw reins and thought the neck stretcher would just be a little easier but would achieve the same thing? I would keep it really loose just so she doesnt brace against it but keep it as a reminder
                Video footage would help tremendously.

                I am not about to bash anyone for asking for help which happens more than I like. The way I see it, if you are asking for help you are wanting to do the right thing.

                Draw reins are worse for curling and bracing IMHO.... But I guess they have there place.
                I have used nearly every gadget out there but I have never had a better outcome then my current mare which I only used side reins for lunging or standing martingale a handful of times.
                I say gadgets are a gimmick. Kind of like diet pills.
                http://dotstreamming.blogspot.com/

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  I dont have any videos of her recently. But like i said shes getting the hang of it, just kinda seeing how others found it helpful or not. It seems about 50/50.
                  Nothing better than an OTTB.... Just Plan Partners,Penny, you have stolen my heart<3

                  http://secondchancethoroughbreds.org

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You will hear the ones who think they are the bomb and you will hear the ones who think they are the devil.

                    Personally I would rather get there by riding correctly. It might take longer but you will get there... the right way.
                    Boyle Heights Kid 1998 16.1h OTTB Dark Bay Gelding
                    Tinner's Way x Sculpture by Hail to Reason
                    "Once you go off track, you never go back!"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I liked it for suggesting to my mare that she should stop imitating a giraffe She was in shape, no health problems, I was asking/telling correctly, and she was just being a stereotypical chestnut mare and doing what she wanted which was carrying her nose wherever she wanted. Anything more forceful than the neck stretcher would have resulted in a needless hissy fit, and it only took about 5 rides with the neck stretcher for her to get the idea. We were super careful to make sure she didn't start to curl under, and as soon as she got the message, we stopped using it and now she'll stretch out on her own.

                      As far as gadgets go, I think it's one that has much more potential when used correctly and thoughtfully. It's not a fix-all, and I wouldn't recommend it for every horse and rider. If someone at your barn has one, and you think your horse is in a place in training where he/she will benefit from it, it's worth trying for a ride or two before buying one yourself.
                      I like mares. They remind me of myself: stubborn know-it-alls who only acknowledge you if you have food.
                      Titania: 50% horse, 50% hippo
                      Unforgetable: torn between jumping and nap time, bad speller

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Electrikk View Post
                        I liked it for suggesting to my mare that she should stop imitating a giraffe She was in shape, no health problems, I was asking/telling correctly, and she was just being a stereotypical chestnut mare and doing what she wanted which was carrying her nose wherever she wanted.
                        ^This. I have this same problem with mine which is why I use one. I only use it at a trot though which seems weird to some but that is where she needs to extra help. She is fine at a canter and I want her head somewhat up for jumping but It has helped us tremendously. I am a believer in neck stretchers but it is, like others have said, something some horses need and some don't. I do love them on OTTB's though.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The neck stretcher can produce the undesired effect of getting behind the bit. I would never encourage riding in a neck stretcher. If the horse trips and his head is "tied down" he might not be able to catch himself. This is good way to find yourself in the dirt with a horse on top of you.
                          If you need to resort to a device, a chambon will encourage the head to go down without pulling the nose to the chest. A de gogue works as a combination of both devices. What I like about the de gogue is that you can attach reins to it and have total control of the flexion with your hands.
                          Last edited by Satin Filly; Aug. 17, 2012, 11:57 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Satin Filly-this is done loosely enough, that in combination with the elastic material, the horse wouldn't have any issues catching themselves if they fell...I would use it for my older mare who "knew" how to go, but would sometimes get so caught up in the giraffe fight that she's be paying more attention to the "I DON'T WANNA" aspect then the actual request. This was a gentle reminder that sky gazing isnt' fun...and if she did have her moments, it allowed her too so she wouldnt' get upset.

                            Hard to see, but she's actually wearing it here. as you can see...its not tying her head down by any means. http://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphoto...665_8727_n.jpg

                            I'm not a tie her head down type of rider...heck...this is one of the few pictures I have of one of my horses in draw reins (circa 2009...I have a better fitting saddle now). I'm def. not forcing a head set by any means. http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphoto...5_977966_n.jpg

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Jumper_girl221 View Post
                              Satin Filly-this is done loosely enough, that in combination with the elastic material, the horse wouldn't have any issues catching themselves if they fell...I would use it for my older mare who "knew" how to go, but would sometimes get so caught up in the giraffe fight that she's be paying more attention to the "I DON'T WANNA" aspect then the actual request. This was a gentle reminder that sky gazing isnt' fun...and if she did have her moments, it allowed her too so she wouldnt' get upset.

                              Hard to see, but she's actually wearing it here. as you can see...its not tying her head down by any means. http://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphoto...665_8727_n.jpg

                              I'm not a tie her head down type of rider...heck...this is one of the few pictures I have of one of my horses in draw reins (circa 2009...I have a better fitting saddle now). I'm def. not forcing a head set by any means. http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphoto...5_977966_n.jpg
                              Horse's trip and fall on their riders, even without neck stretchers. Forcing a horse to carry themselves in a manner which the individual is not naturally gifted to do or comfortable doing (or else you wouldn't be using the device in the first place) IS going to throw off their balance a bit, until they get used to it. Just giving a fair warning, as not everybody is as sensible. I've seen some people crank their horse's head down so very tightly with these things.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                To the OP-
                                In regard to your 'horse being scared of it':
                                Yes, it is possible that they can have a freak out moment if they feel trapped. On the contrary, when pressure is applied to the poll of a horse, endorphines are released which has a relaxing effect. As with any new thing you introduce to your horse, you do it slowly and use common sense. Let her/him get used to it on a loose setting. Increase pressure as you feel comfortable.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Ack, why are you concerned with a "head set"?

                                  The goal should never be to "set the head" anywhere. A correct working frame comes from the horse working from behind, stepping underneath themselves, lifting the back, and working correctly between the rider's leg and hand.

                                  Most horses that I've seen that have a "giraffe" issue are not moving forward enough and have not learned how to carry the bridle.

                                  This is not to say that the neck stretcher, pessoa rig, side reins, draw reins, etc... have no purpose. In the right hands, they are a great tool. However, I get nervous when someone asks about using them to create a "head set".
                                  "Are you yawning? You don't ride well enough to yawn. I can yawn, because I ride better than you. Meredith Michael Beerbaum can yawn. But you? Not so much..."
                                  -George Morris

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by JumpingAddict93 View Post
                                    Has any body used the dover neck stretcher? Did you get good results? Bad results? The barn i used to ride at used them for a while and i have been debating on getting one for my ottb to help with her head set, but worried that she could get scared from it....any thoughts?
                                    I had a horse freak out with one on while I was riding and she attempted to rear and fell over to the side with me on her. I will not ride with one. I'll lunge with one and occasionally ride with draw reins, but that's it.
                                    Southern Cross Guest Ranch
                                    An All Inclusive Guest Ranch Vacation - Georgia

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