Sunday, March 21, 2010


Mr. Gabe is super mouthy, I've mentioned that before. He's almost like a teething toddler...must have something in his mouth all the time. Yesterday he tore a huge hole in the seat of my tractor while I was cleaning his run-in. Most of the time he limits himself to chewing on the rubber tires, but noooo....the seat was his victim instead.

He used to be very, very wiggly while tied, then, he discovered he could gnaw on the rope during grooming and tacking and he stands much, much better.

It starts with lip wiggles on the rope and tentative testing with the tongue:

Quickly it goes from testing to active, slobber-inducing tasting:

Most days he inhales a huge loop of rope up into his maw to gnaw on it with his molars. This time, he is content with mouthing and licking it:

He spends a lot of time trying to get the rope INTO his mouth. I think that's part of the challenge of the game for him, just staying busy. He's one of those horses who I think would really benefit from one of those pony pop licky things you can mount in their stalls.

Some horses have the head to really show off a fine figure-8 to it's fullest. I personally love the look of a figure-8 on a fine-looking horse head. I think Gabe pulls the look off well!
Isn't he a handsome guy? I'm pretty sure he knows it, too.


  1. My boy does the same thing. It doesn't matter if it is a lead rope or the reins, he has to chew on them. The thing is he is so slick sometimes that I don't even notice until he is REALLY chewing. He even chews on the bit as i let it our of his mouth (usually his french link). i think it gives them personality....our boys are the best!

  2. My one horse has a serious oral issue. She'll chew on occasion, but mostly she just licks. She's stood there for an hour and a half while the farrier worked (he was making her doesn't normally take that long) and licked my sweatshirt the WHOLE time. Several times I've seen my dog standing in front of her while Pretty licks her!

    I do like the figure-8 on him. He does look a little bummed, though. Like, "Aw mom, how am I supposed to get stuff in my mouth like this?" :-)

  3. He looks rather transformed...but how does he go?

  4. Mouthiness is as annoying as it is cute. I have a new guy who has the most agile lips and tongue. Like a young pup, he has to explore his environment with his mouth.
    Years ago one of my horses liked chewing on things, too. I found that if I undid the curb chain on his bit, he would stand like an angel. It seemed to serve as a horsey pacifier. I just discovered a bag of tack from that era... there are about 5 loose curb chains in there. I used to hang them on everything to satisfy his mouthing needs!

  5. The transition from rope halter to figure 8, from mustang to Thoroughbred jumper, is quite startling!

    Go to and order him a real Thoroughbred halter! The horror, the horror!

    They all chew. Some more than others. Bonnie, now, here's a trick, she will walk up to a truck (there are various reasons why she might encounter a truck, none of them interesting) and take her front teeth, apply them to the hood, and rake them back and forth. I don't know if she likes the very satisfying sound of incisors on steel, or the taste of the automotive paint that she is tearing off with every scrape, but either way we have a very, very scarred truck hood. It just makes me laugh everytime I see it. My Bonnie Boo.

  6. He is a bit bummed about the figure-8...but far less bummed about it than he was about a flash. :D

    Mouthiness is quite annoying, definitely. I've found if I just let him mouth on something acceptable, he keeps his mouth off me, and I'm good with that.

    KK...This particular ride was not the best. I wanted to give the loose ring Myler another try (because I really like it on other horses) and he again reminded me how much he hated it. He seems to really, really dislike light, thin bits. He has, however, adjusted quite well to the figure-8 as long as he's got the medium diameter, heavy eggbutt snaffle in his face!

    Natalie...he does mustang well, doesn't he? ROFL! He likes his rope halter and he respects it. I have a nicer one for off the farm use, but for bopping around the farm, he gets the rope halter!