I've tried a plain eggbutt snaffle, a loose-ring comfort mouth snaffle, a plain D-ring snaffle and a full-cheek snaffle on Gabe.
He hated the full-cheek, played like crazy with the loose-ring and just didn't seem to care for either the eggbutt or the D-ring.
I have one more mild snaffle in my arsenal of bits.
It's a Myler comfort mouth level 2 snaffle with hooks. Sounds complicated, but it's one of the most interesting and mildest bits I've used. It's a snaffle with a very, very small port on it for tongue relief. The hooks, which are spaces to connect the bridle and the reins directly to the D-ring, stabilize the bit in the mouth and the way the snaffle joint is connected it prevents the "nutcracker" effect of most snaffles and allows me to move each side of the bit independent of the other. I really like this bit.
And apparently, so does Gabe! He mouthed it a bit, chewed on it, wiggled it around as much as he could, sighed and dropped his head. He wasn't quite sure what to think at first about the port and my ability to move each side of the bit independently, but he figured it out pretty quickly and seemed to accept it far better than the other bits I've used.
But before I could ride, I had to deal with THIS. Seriously Gabe? Must we roll and roll and roll every single time it rains? And what's wrong with rolling in the grass? Must you find the slickest, wettest, muddiest spot available?
Nothing like a mud-covered beast to start your riding time out right! He likes to grind it in good. And our mud isn't just mud, it's mostly clay, so even on a summer coat, it sticks like glue.
Luckily he didn't grind too much mud into the tail. Usually I'm picking huge clumps and giant hard balls of mud out of the end. He was at least kind enough to spare me that extra effort.
I love this horse's eye. They are so dark, deep and expressive. I can lose myself in them and I get the feeling there is a whole lot going on in that head that I'll never know. It's almost like gazing into the eyes of a lover. Can't you see the intelligence in there?
I LOVE this picture. Amazing how waiting an hour to catch the light of the setting sun makes such a big difference in the ambiance of the photo.