June 6, 2014

The Tongue

I've shown the videos before of Echo and her tongue obsession. She just wants people to grab it and when she gets bored it's her go-to vice. It never carried over into riding when I first started her but now it's become a problem.

I know her teeth are good, and this is the bit she's been in since day 1.  It's a French-Link D-Ring.

Ideas to help stop her? 

We very briefly tried a different bit to a rubber snaffle but she was such a nightmare L dismounted and switched bridles after 5 minutes. I also finally found my flash attachment, very loose on what hole it's on right now because she got pretty angry over it. However the amount of time the tongue was out was reduced by maybe 20%. 


  1. Does her tongue sticking out impact her ability/willingness to work?
    Sometimes it might be a concentration crutch like in humans...However if it is an evasion technique, she's a smart one especially if she pitches a fit when you try to encourage her mouth closed with a flash attachment - afraid I've no suggestions as I am in no way a tack expert & would hate to give you incorrect info - sorry.
    Could you ask L's trainer since they'll be lessoning with them & they might see the tongue in action.

    1. Definitely doesn't bother her work ethic / focus or willingness. It almost seems to be a happy relaxation state for her. In the cross ties she does it after she's been curried and I start using a soft brush on her.

      While riding if she is uneasy about something or sees something new for the first time the tongue is where it should be - in the mouth. However as soon as she processes a big scary new thing like a blue barrel in a field, she sticks her tongue out. When I'm grooming her and she sticks it out, if I grab it she's super content. I've stopped doing that to stop any encouragement.

      Definitely hoping L's trainer has some advice today!