A Bit Crazy: Part Sweet Iron

After my brief bit series, in which we realized it had nothing to do with the bit and everything to do with my hands and my training attitude, I figured we had put the "is it me or is it the bit" conundrum to bed.

Well, it did get out of bed, slightly. To grab a drink of water or something.

The Cowboy had me restart Spicy in a plain D-Ring snaffle. I haven't used it in decades. It was actually the first bit I ever bought when I was about sixteen.

Kind of poetic, actually.

My first session, however, The Cowboy used his own bridle that had a western D-ring with a sweet iron mouthpiece. I picked one up for a couple bucks off eBay awhile ago and started using it on Spicy. I like it better than my First Bit from an aesthetic sense which, if you're just walking around working on relaxing the only excitement left is the aesthetics.

Working on my hands and our mutual trust has eliminated the anxious chomping Spicy did constantly. His mouth is quiet, except for his relaxed and thinking lip flap which is so cute it makes me want to snoggle his schnozzle.

Painfully cute.

The sweet iron bit is the first time he's expressed a preference for a bit. He holds it in his mouth differently, he slurps it when he's really relaxed, and he's quick to stretch into it. I can feel the difference in the reins as well; it's such a subtle difference the Megan of last year would not have noticed it. The bit isn't sitting in the corners of his mouth anymore, he's holding it. I can feel his tongue and his mouth and I have a degree of precision that I've never had before. Twitching my ring finger elicits a bending and stretching. Adding my pinky and tightening my core brings us to a halt.

It's so cool, it feels like mind control. If you think about it, it is mind control. However it's not control over Spicy's mind specifically, but mine!


  1. Its so nice to find a bit that just makes things easier & makes your horse happier. Its never the whole solution, but it can be a really significant piece of the puzzle!

    1. Just from a comfort perspective, definitely! Working on my hands has done way more for his mouth and education in the contact but the sweet iron has been fun to watch him relax into.

  2. The sweet iron has that effect on horses. Carlos who was my tough puzzle to crack with training love sweet iron and copper. He also had an extremely active tongue, I wouldn't be surprised if they tied it when he raced. While he went really well in both my plain copper snaffle (for the flat) and the sweet iron wire for lots of other classes his all time favorite bit was a copper pelham with a roller.

    Bits are a crazy trying process and what works today doesn't always work tomorrow but yay! Glad you guys found one that's great for right now.

    1. I've never used sweet iron before, but I'm definitely going to keep it in my back pocket from now on!

      Playing with the metal of the mouthpiece is interesting.

  3. Your journey with Spicy is just the coolest. I love hearing about every new nugget of wisdom he teaches you!

    1. he teaches me something every. day. Sometimes he's exhausting lol :D


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