How to Bridle a Horse



Deal with a horse that objects to the bit.,
Train your horse to open their mouth for the bit.,
Keep your horse from getting nervous.

Often the reason a horse objects to the bit is rooted in misunderstanding. They aren’t usually trying to be naughty, but something about the bit is making them uncomfortable.

The bit might have the wrong taste. Horses tend to prefer copper bits to other kinds of bits because of the taste. Unfortunately copper bits tend to degrade more quickly than other kinds so you should make sure to watch out for pits and sharp edges.
The bit might be too cold. You wouldn’t want someone to shove a bit of cold metal in your mouth. Neither does your horse. Try warming up the bit between your hands before you put it in their mouth.

, Sometimes your horse won’t open their mouth, because the bit is too cold, or has the wrong taste, but often a little training can make it so they will do as you has. Just make sure that you reinforce the behavior you want to see from them.

Teach your horse to be comfortable with the cue. Pick a cue to use to get your horse to open their mouth. Give your horse the cue by touching them. Say “yes” to them so that they associate that touch with good behavior. Give your horse a treat as you take your fingers away.
Show your horse that they get a treat. Have your horse tied or secured. Approach the horse’s head from the left side, and walk so that your horse can see you. Stay on an angle facing the same direction as your horse. Have a treat in your left hand. Give your horse the cue and say “Open,” while gently pressing two fingers again their lower lip. Say “yes” and take your fingers away, giving your horse the treat.
Repeat these steps about four or five times, or until it seems like your horse has gotten the picture.
Now do as you did above, only this time maintain slight but consistent pressure, and place your fingers just under his upper lip. When your horse opens their mouth say “Yes” and give them the treat. Practice this until they get it.
Have your horse let you put a bit in their mouth. Show your horse the bit (unattached to the bridle to begin with). Let your horse sniff it and lip it. Then do as you did above, giving your horse the cue. Place the bit in your horse’s mouth when they open up. Remove the bit and give them a treat.

, One of the keys to properly bridling your horse is to maintain calmness, both in yourself and in your horse. A nervous horse might try to bite, toss their heads, strike out with their hooves, or try to escape. If your horse is overly nervous, don’t bridle them until they have calmed down.

Avoid flicking her with the reins, especially around her eyes and ears, because this can cause a horse to become nervous or anxious.

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