• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Hunter with open mouth - why and how to fix it?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Hunter with open mouth - why and how to fix it?

    I have started riding a horse that is very athletic , but opens her mouth in response to the rein aid. The horse has been doing this for some time with the former rider as well. She will carry herself nicely (forward, back up, framed nicely) but will often have her mouth open, even when I float the reins and "give". I have tried a plain egg-butt snaffle and a slow-twist full cheek snaffle with the same result. There is no head shaking or change of frame or other evidence of discomfort.

    Is this an indication of pain in the mouth, a reaction to the type of bit, or purely a resistance? Suggestions?

  • #2
    Could be resistance, but I personally would try a bit like this, the Herm Sprenger Duo, or something like it. http://www.123tack.com/herm-sprenger...Fcid4AodhCMAVQ

    I've found a lot of horses with bit evasion or distaste like this one, as it's thin and gives some tongue relief. Or maybe try another ported snaffle? Have her teeth been floated lately? My old gelding got quite mouth-gappy whenever he was due for a float.
    Blog chronicling our new eventing adventures: Riding With Scissors

    Comment


    • #3
      Also, is the current snaffle single-jointed? The horse may not like the nutcracker effect or have a low palate- maybe try a French link too.
      Blog chronicling our new eventing adventures: Riding With Scissors

      Comment


      • #4
        I assume you have had the horse's teeth looked at by a professional? If not that is where I would start.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by PaintedHunter View Post
          Could be resistance, but I personally would try a bit like this, the Herm Sprenger Duo, or something like it. http://www.123tack.com/herm-sprenger...Fcid4AodhCMAVQ
          I ride my horse in the Sprenger Duo and he still opens his mouth. I would love to find a solution as well, but haven't yet. He is very sensitive to rein aids, but I don't think anything softer than this bit exists! I've been considering trying something double jointed, but I'm concerned that a switch to a metal bit would be the wrong direction. I rode him in a similar bit by happy mouth for a few years before trying the Sprenger Duo. I honestly don't feel much difference when riding, but the happy mouth was slightly thicker with some ridges.

          OP, is this horse very sensitive to the bit pressure, or just opening the mouth and evading? My horse is responsive regardless of what he does with his mouth.
          http://www.stampyandthebrain.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by morsekg View Post
            I ride my horse in the Sprenger Duo and he still opens his mouth. I would love to find a solution as well, but haven't yet. He is very sensitive to rein aids, but I don't think anything softer than this bit exists! I've been considering trying something double jointed, but I'm concerned that a switch to a metal bit would be the wrong direction. I rode him in a similar bit by happy mouth for a few years before trying the Sprenger Duo. I honestly don't feel much difference when riding, but the happy mouth was slightly thicker with some ridges.

            OP, is this horse very sensitive to the bit pressure, or just opening the mouth and evading? My horse is responsive regardless of what he does with his mouth.
            Maybe try the Happy Mouth double-jointed with the roller in the middle?
            Blog chronicling our new eventing adventures: Riding With Scissors

            Comment


            • #7
              We had one at our barn that did this when it first came in. My trainer played with bits a little bit to and then put a removable flash on for a few training rides. The horse was young and green and just needed to learn to accept the bit. Worked very well.
              AU Hunter
              WAR EAGLE!!

              Comment


              • #8
                I would try a bunch of soft bits. Anything from mullen mouthpieces (metal, rubber or plastic) to French links and oval mouths (the kind with the bean in the middle instead of a flat link). My Arab has wicked reactions to bits with a single joint including rearing and flinging his head from up by my face down to the ground and back again. He just will not tolerate them. Most horses are less extreme than this and do things like just doing what they're told, but gaping their mouth like yours. My friend's QH is also not a fan of bits with a single break. His response is to put his nose in the air, gape his mouth open and run around like a llama.

                Another thing you might try is something with stability like a mullen Pelham or a mullen or French link baucher.

                It sounds like the horse really hasn't learned to trust and accept a bit. If the bit is poking him in the roof of the mouth or pinching his bars/tongue he may not be willing or able to truly accept and trust the bit.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by PaintedHunter View Post
                  Maybe try the Happy Mouth double-jointed with the roller in the middle?
                  My idea, too. Double jointed and soft.
                  "Radar, the man's ex-cavalry: if he sees four flies having a meeting, he knows they're talking about a horse!" Cptn. BJ Hunnicutt, M*A*S*H Season 4, Episode "Dear Mildred"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My horse used to hold his jaw open. His lips were closed but his jaw was slack. He looked like he had a mouthful of $#!t. The massage therapist agreed with me that his poll was out of whack and he was experiencing some TMJD. He never would allow anyone to adjust his poll, but these days he yawns excessively when you drop the halter to bridle him and that seems to help him release jaw tension. He no longer does his $#!tface.
                    ::I do not understand your specific kind of crazy, but I do admire your total commitment to it::

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      morsekg - She does not seem to have a sensitive mouth. The opposite in fact. It is improving a bit now, and on the flat she is getting more responsive. But even as we are going along happy as can be doing everything right, the mouth is open half the time.

                      I have a French link that I can try. I used it once and found she really ignored all input with that bit, but I can try once more.

                      I will be getting the teeth checked too.

                      Wondered if a Waterford would help with this type of problem.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by auhunter View Post
                        We had one at our barn that did this when it first came in. My trainer played with bits a little bit to and then put a removable flash on for a few training rides. The horse was young and green and just needed to learn to accept the bit. Worked very well.
                        This is what is working for my greenie. She is also in a french link happy mouth bit with a roller in the middle.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I second everyone's opinions about the softer bits. I ride a horse who has a very hard mouth. She can get very strong and opened her mouth quite wide to evade the bit. She's had a long history of people switching to stronger and stronger bits and putting all sorts of contraptions on her... I found that actually what she likes best is an eggbutt snaffle wrapped in Sealtex Latex Bandage. http://www.amazon.com/Sealtex-Latex-.../dp/B001HB95F2

                          She still opens her mouth with that bit from time to time, but much MUCH better. I actually found her to be much softer and quieter in that bit too. Just remember to change the wrap every month or so - little pieces of hay, grass whatever can get underneath the wrap and start to get pretty nasty... Also, if you don't use the bit regularly, the wrap will dry out.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Crank noseband?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You might look into a Myler with the MB 02 mouthpiece. http://www.toklat.com/dyn_prod.php?p=89-17025&k=87930
                              The sides work independently, but the curved canons and the barrel keep the poking away. Many horses like a thinner bit- not harsher, just better suited to their mouth conformation.
                              I like the c-sleeve, but it's available with whatever cheek configuration you like.
                              madeline
                              * What you release is what you teach * Don't be distracted by unwanted behavior* Whoever waits the longest is the teacher. Van Hargis

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I'd try a figure 8 noseband at home and just switch it out for show, in addition to the mild bit.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  My horse used to open her mouth then I switched her from a snaffle to a waterford and rode her with a flash 2-3 times and now she keeps her mouth closed no problem. I did have her teeth done and she had been seen by the chiropractor which could be a factor too.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by morsekg View Post
                                    I ride my horse in the Sprenger Duo and he still opens his mouth. I would love to find a solution as well, but haven't yet. He is very sensitive to rein aids, but I don't think anything softer than this bit exists! I've been considering trying something double jointed, but I'm concerned that a switch to a metal bit would be the wrong direction. I rode him in a similar bit by happy mouth for a few years before trying the Sprenger Duo. I honestly don't feel much difference when riding, but the happy mouth was slightly thicker with some ridges.

                                    OP, is this horse very sensitive to the bit pressure, or just opening the mouth and evading? My horse is responsive regardless of what he does with his mouth.
                                    I have an older mare that went in the duo ring rather nicely, but still somewhat fussy and resistant. While she was pregnant I would ride her now and then and just tossed my other mares copper "nugget" double jointed snaffle since i was too lazy to set up a separate bridle for occasional rides w/t rides. She went absolutely fabulous in it (TOTALLY shocked me) and after foaling I've kept her in it without any issues.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by trubandloki View Post
                                      I assume you have had the horse's teeth looked at by a professional? If not that is where I would start.
                                      ^^^ Ditto this.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Once teeth/physical issues are ruled out, I'd play around with different bits.

                                        My guy goes best in a copper Dr. Bristol (he hates the nutcracker action of a regular snaffle). We have a twisted one for shows and a plain one for home (although we probably don't even need the twist).

                                        I also ride in a flash noseband at home, because he definitely opens his mouth primarily as a bit-evasion thing. I find that if I ride in the flash consistently, he forgets that he can evade by opening his mouth, but if I take it off for weeks/months he starts to develop bad habits. I'm sure a more adept rider could prevent these habits from occurring, but since I'm only human we use the noseband and it keeps everyone happy.

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X