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Ever try to bridle up only to have your horse refuse to open his mouth for the bit? You pull up on the bridle and the bit bangs around the horses teeth and he begins throwing his head around. Any of this sound familiar? Then this months tip is for you. After this lesson, your horse will open wide for you anytime you give him the cue.

Stand on the left side of your horse holding the lead rope just under the halter with your right hand. Take the four fingers of your left hand and push them slowly into the horses mouth at the left corner being careful to avoid his teeth. If he opens his mouth, immediately pull your fingers from his mouth. If he doesn't open, keep your fingers in his mouth until he does. You don't have to do anything more except leave your fingers in his mouth and wait. Sooner or later he will get tired of your fingers in his mouth and will open up. As soon as he does, pull your fingers out. Repeat this until he opens his mouth immediately as you begin to insert your fingers.

Once he consistently opens his mouth to your four fingers, start over again with only three fingers repeating as stated above until the horse consistently opens his mouth immediately as you start to insert your fingers.

Repeat the work with two fingers until he consistently opens his mouth.

Repeat the work with just one finger.

The final step is to repeat the process with your left thumb, leaving it in until he opens his mouth and immediately pulling your thumb out when he does. When he consistently opens his mouth as soon as you BEGIN to push your thumb into his mouth, he is ready for the bridle and bit.
Remove the halter. Hold the crown piece of the bridle in your right hand and the bit with the fingers of your left hand. Pull the bridle up slowly and lift the bit to your horses mouth with the fingers of your left hand. Now keep the bit at the horses mouth with your left fingers and begin to push your left thumb into the side of the horses mouth. As he opens his mouth, push the bit in with your left hand and raise up on the bridle with your right hand, then placing the crown piece up over the horses ears. If the horse does not immediately open his mouth, keep your thumb in his mouth until he does.

If you have worked this lesson consistently through all the steps, you should have no problem bridling your horse. Be patient, be consistent and insist that your horse be consistent too.
This is a lesson that you can teach your horse in an hour or so, and forever eliminate the frustration of a closed mouth.
Happy training folks!!!