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Horse Care and Comfort

Which bit?


I have ridden my horse bitless with the Dually for the duration of our MR training, but now I think we are ready to use a bit. The bit she had when I got her is 7 inches, and I'm rather confused by the measurments on the Uni shop. 5? 5.5? What do these numbers mean, and which bit should I get? She's a 12-year-old Thoroughbred.


I've decided to remain bitless. Nevermind!


Oh...Well, now I am getting a bit. Got convinced it is a good idea. :)
Anyone know?

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Before sticking a bit in your horses mouth I would recommend you read the information on the bitless bridle website.
Now, I know they are pushing to sell their own bridles and one should always be aware of this as they are a business, but some of the reasons for not using a bit are very compelling. Have a read anyway and then make up your own mind.

Kicki -- Sweden
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The measure of a bit should be taken between the holes where the rings run through the bit.
7 inches sounds unusually large to me.
If you decide to go for a bit, my suggestion is that you get a thin wooden stick, with notches in it for every half inch, and measure your horse's mouth from one corner of the mouth to the other. That's also the measure of the bit.
Whatever bit you decide to try, you need to check that it isn't too long or the middle part will bang into the bone of his lower jaw when the rein is pulled.
After that, you need to listen to your horse. She will try to tell you what she likes and doesn't like.
Good luck finding what suits you and your horse best! :)

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I just wanted to ask a question. I went with a friend to see Monty Roberts in Caboolture last weekend and my friend bought his sweet iron bit. She has ridden him for a few months in a snaffle and since putting this bit on him he has been harder for her to control. She is finding him difficult to stop. I was just wondering if anyone could give me any tips on helping her with him and the new bit. It is quite confusing for me as the bit is not to different?



The 'average' horse would wear a 4.5" to 5" bit. 7" is rather large sounding. Perhaps, it's measuring in another unit other than inches? Simple way to find out -- pull out your ruler and measure the width from the inside of one ring to the inside of the other (I say rings assuming it's a snaffle, but this could be whatever type of cheek piece the bit has).

Bits should have about 1/4" of space on each side of the horses mouth.

If you don't have an old bit to start with -- you can use a piece of plastic tubing like from a plastic hanger and a sharpie. Slip it into your horse mouth where the bit would sit, mark each side of your horses mouth and add 1/4" to each side.

Hope this helps. :-)


Okay...This is funny, kinda. I clean my old bit the riding school gave me, and it says 5 1/4 inches, and it's always sorta stuck out of her mouth, so 5 inches should be perfect.
5 inches thin sounds perfect for her. Can't wait!