Jackie Cochran's Blog (399)

Dwyer's Philosophy of Bitting

Dwyer's Philosophy of Bitting

The last two weeks, stuck at home, I have been reading, re-reading and digesting the bitting information in Francis Dwyer's “On Seats and Saddles, Bits and Bitting.” I have been questioning all of my old assumptions about bits and riding with bits. While reading and thinking about this information I have wondered if many of the modern fads in riding, which many of…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on December 8, 2018 at 2:03pm — No Comments

What I've Learned About Curb Bits

What I've Learned About Curb Bits

After hurting all weekend I went to my MD on Monday. He ordered X-rays and found two cracked ribs. I am also bruised from my left hip down my thigh, my lower back from the edges of the protective vest, and my left rib cage hurts. I asked the doctor about riding and he said 6 WEEKS not riding, I told him about Mia (32-33, arthritic, freezes instead of bolting so…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on November 24, 2018 at 12:45pm — No Comments

I Don't Bounce Like I Used To

I Don't Bounce Like I Used To

I fell off Coach.

It was in the 30's F when we got out to the stable. For some reason Coach had not been turned out at all that morning in spite of 2 days inside because of the cold rain. When Debbie brought him to the wash stall he was pissed off, he was more reactive to his grooming and he…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on November 17, 2018 at 2:20pm — No Comments

The Thick Flexible Mullen Mouth Snaffle Got a No

The Thick Flexible Mullen Mouth Snaffle Got a No

I had found a $20.00 USD thick flexible black rubber Mullen mouth snaffle on Ebay. I bought it to try on Coach because it was cheap enough that I would not be out much money if Coach gnawed it to pieces. I also liked that it had a thick, gentle mouthpiece and that it did not taste HORRIBLE to me. Trotting is coming up and I worry that with…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on November 10, 2018 at 11:28am — No Comments

Both Mares Like My Bombers Bit More Than Coach Does

Both Mares Like My Bombers Bit More Than Coach Does

This week I got to try my new Bombers Titanium Happy Tongue bit on Cider and Mia. After Coach's reactions I was not very hopeful, particularly with Mia. When I asked Shannon if I could switch Cider's bit from the titanium coated rainbow Kimberwick to the Bombers bit she was quite interested.…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on November 3, 2018 at 10:59am — No Comments

Coach Did NOT Like His New Bit!

Coach Did NOT Like His New Bit!

I was SO EAGER to try my new bit when it arrived! It is a Bombers Titanium Happy Tongue non-jointed snaffle. Coach has clearly indicated a preference for titanium bits over stainless steel bits, and he also has firmly “told” me that the more joints the bit has the more the bit irritates him. This bit is “anatomic” in shape, with a generous port and it is Bomber's…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on October 27, 2018 at 1:47pm — No Comments

Coach Adjusts to Big Changes

Coach Adjusts to Big Changes

Debbie's stable changed from night turnout to day turnout Tuesday this week. Coach was NOT pleased by the change in his routine. Debbie's workers had tried to keep Coach in his stall so he would be there and nice and clean for his lesson, but when Coach realized that all his buddies got to go out while he stayed stuck in his stall, well he started protesting with…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on October 20, 2018 at 2:12pm — No Comments

As Michael Approached

As Michael Approached

I just got to ride on Wednesday this week. There was off and on rain, and a pretty persistent drizzle while we drove to the stable. Debbie had called me to make sure I was still coming out, but when I told her that this would be my only chance to ride this week and I was willing to dodge the raindrops she told me to come on out.…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on October 13, 2018 at 3:55pm — No Comments

All Three Horses Point to my Right Hand

All Three Horses Point to my Right Hand

Last Sunday I rode a still sore Cider. When I went to buy the supplement that worked somewhat on Cider's arthritis the feed store was out, so I got the “Stop the Pain” supplement after consulting with Shannon. By Sunday Cider had been on the new supplement (AND a feed that included some supplements that help arthritis) for a week. Shannon was happy that…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on October 6, 2018 at 11:23am — No Comments

Finally, an Acceptable Bit

Finally, an Acceptable Bit

This week, after the promised three weeks in the 23mm egg-butt stainless steel snaffle, I went back to experimenting with my new collection of titanium coated snaffle bits with Coach. Debbie and I both decided that, due to Coach's extreme fussiness with bits off contact, we should next try the titanium coated Mullen mouth snaffle. This bit addresses two of Coach's…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 29, 2018 at 11:03am — No Comments

We Survived Florence

We Survived Florence

Tropical storm Florence messed up my riding last week. While I got my lesson in, I did not ride Mia that Friday because I was afraid that the lowering air pressure would aggravate her arthritic joints and Sunday I did not ride because of the storm. But my power stayed on throughout the storm, I had the internet, and I did not have to go outside to take care of animals, so…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 22, 2018 at 12:30pm — No Comments

More Adventures in Trying Bits

More Adventures in Trying Bits

I spent this week trying out my new bits on all three horses, Cider, Coach and Mia.

Last Sunday I rode Cider. She was still quite stiff from her arthritis though Shannon thinks that she has improved some on the arthritis supplement. I figured that a different bit would give her something new to…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 8, 2018 at 1:21pm — No Comments

It Seems Like Coach Prefers a Center Joint

It Seems Like Coach Prefers a Center Joint

This week I learned that Coach can communicate with great subtlety.

I was all excited when I got to the stable for my lesson on Wednesday. I had put my new three piece titanium coated “rainbow” egg-butt snaffle (with a lozenge) on my bridle to try out on Coach. When it came time to…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on September 1, 2018 at 2:10pm — No Comments

Could It Be the Center Joint?

Could It Be the Center Joint?

I used my new Ovation titanium coated D-ring single jointed anatomic mouth bit on Coach for the second time during my lesson on Wednesday. The grinding of the bit between his teeth was greatly reduced this time, he ground the bit some at tacking up and being led to the ring, but it was not as “furious” as before. When I started my ride he ground the bit a few…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on August 25, 2018 at 11:30am — No Comments

We Try a Titanium Coated Bit

We Try a Titanium Coated Bit

Since I started riding Coach three weeks ago I have been trying to think of a solution for him grinding the bit between his premolar teeth. To recap, Coach's normal bit is stainless steel and is 23mm thick, I think.

Coach ground the 13mm thick stainless steel Wellep bit between his teeth the most…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on August 18, 2018 at 11:18am — 1 Comment

Coach Does Better with the Fulmer Bit

Coach Does Better with the Fulmer Bit

After my lesson last week I dug my Fulmer Full Cheek snaffle out of my bit box, and I finally found my Fulmer bit loops (the Fulmer bit requires special bit loops because the little ball at the end of the full cheek is small.) I dug out my Micklem horse sized nose piece, found a pair of my bit straps I made from cut down…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on August 3, 2018 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Coach is a Thoroughbred

Coach is a Thoroughbred

Coach is my new lesson horse for right now. He is an OTTB gelding, Chestnut, around 15.3+ hands, with very good substance for a TB, and very high withers that stretch way back (no “pockets”.) To prepare my tack for Coach I took out the doubled bridging shims from my Contender II saddle pad, found my 48” string girth, got my 5” Wellep single jointed snaffle, and I…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on July 28, 2018 at 11:03am — No Comments

We Should Have Waited Longer for the Bute to Work

We Should Have Waited Longer for the Bute to Work

Last Sunday Shannon gave Cider a gram of Bute before she came to pick me up. When we arrived, Shannon immediately went to tack Cider up since I ride Cider in my saddle, saddle pad and bridle. Cider still looked stiff when Shannon led her to the mounting block so I started off slow and easy, trying to make my seat lighter in the saddle while not…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on July 21, 2018 at 1:31pm — No Comments

The "Collecting" Leg

The “Collecting” Leg

When we got to Shannon's place last Sunday she had already groomed Cider completely and was ready to tack up (I use my own saddle.) As she put the saddle on Cider's back she told me she was going to try placing the saddle an inch or so further back to see if that would take some of the weight off of Cider's front legs, which have been flinching every downhill step for…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on July 14, 2018 at 2:38pm — No Comments

Sometimes Bingo Uses ANY Excuse to Ignore Me

Sometimes Bingo Uses ANY Excuse to Ignore Me

Since Debbie was putting on a horse show on July 4 I had my lesson on Tuesday. Debbie decided that she needed to give her problem child, the Arab gelding Tercel, a ride, and my lesson was the only chance she would have this week. Years ago when she got Tercel I told her I did not mind her riding him during my lessons since Debbie is quite capable of…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on July 7, 2018 at 4:30pm — No Comments

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