Best grazing muzzle

Jane&Ziggy

Jane&Sid these days!
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Trimmer says Sid must lose weight sharpish. Could a grazing muzzle help? He is a violent horse in the field do it would need to be strong and secure 😳
 

Myfellpony

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Mar 15, 2015
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It’s so hard with cobs isn’t it?
is he out 24/7 or in a stable over night?

I don’t like the idea of muzzling for 24 hours if they live out and I believe that if you only muzzle for a few hours, then they gorge once it’s off anyway. Best thing is to muzzle on grass then restrict hay (soaked if possible) when they are in the stable.

I am aiming to eventually set up a track system. Only problem is that planning is very strict around here, so can’t remove grass to put in a stone surface, will probably set up something using electric fence once I’m a bit more mobile.

as to grazing muzzles, you will get loads of different ones recommended, but it all depends on what actually suits YOUR horse. It may cost a few pounds and a bit of time to find the perfect one that actually stays on!

I bought Star the Dinky Pony grazing muzzle as it looked the most comfortable.

the name is misleading, they fit up to 17 hh if I remember correctly.
 

Jane&Ziggy

Jane&Sid these days!
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It’s so hard with cobs isn’t it?
is he out 24/7 or in a stable over night?

I don’t like the idea of muzzling for 24 hours if they live out and I believe that if you only muzzle for a few hours, then they gorge once it’s off anyway. Best thing is to muzzle on grass then restrict hay (soaked if possible) when they are in the stable.

I am aiming to eventually set up a track system. Only problem is that planning is very strict around here, so can’t remove grass to put in a stone surface, will probably set up something using electric fence once I’m a bit more mobile.

as to grazing muzzles, you will get loads of different ones recommended, but it all depends on what actually suits YOUR horse. It may cost a few pounds and a bit of time to find the perfect one that actually stays on!

I bought Star the Dinky Pony grazing muzzle as it looked the most comfortable.

the name is misleading, they fit up to 17 hh if I remember correctly.
He lives out on grass alas. He has a grass track - I guess I should make it narrower 😜

I see what you mean about there not being a lot f point in muzzling for part of the day. He is such a Flymo
 

PePo

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If you think he'll get it off, you can plait into the mane and duct tape the closures, to help keep it on. You can also add a browband and leather headcollar over the top if they are really good at removing it :D

Now Pete's moved from a track system, he wears his 12-16 hours a day when turned out (he's stabled during the day) but I think if your on a grass track, there's still merit in muzzling as they can't gorge so much as a lush field.

This combined with soaked hay & increasing the exercise has helped .Can you lunge him as well as ride somedays for example?

I use Shires & Best Friends - the best friends one attached to a leather headcollar and I switch them every 2-3 days to prevent pressure points.

I'd like to try the Thinline Flexible Filly muzzle but they are out of stock with the manufacturer at the moment.

ETA: Being really strict with exercise is probably the most beneficial thing for him to be fair. It's hard, but I try to think of it more as 'training' rather than leisure riding & being really clear with what I'm going to do each week or cycle. I work in 10 day cycles at the moment and plan out the cardio work, the core strengthening work & the easier days. When he's fitter and slimmer I'm hoping to give him a day off a week and work in 7 day cycles :) Interval training I've found really helpful too - evenn when just lunging!
 
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Kite_Rider

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May 18, 2009
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He lives out on grass alas. He has a grass track - I guess I should make it narrower 😜

I see what you mean about there not being a lot f point in muzzling for part of the day. He is such a Flymo
Is there anyway you can section some of his grass track off? Mine is configured in a figure of eight so I’ve many ways I can reduce or expand it depending on how she’s doing weight wise or how the grass is growing or not.
 
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domane

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I've been using a Shires Comfort one with the faux sheepskin lining on G. She lives out in it permanently, but comes in for the day about 4 days a week to give her face a rest. I actually have two because I wash them weekly.... one on, one off. The plastic nose frame inside the webbing has worn through on both under her chin and rubbed her hair off so I bought a bag of sheepskin offcuts from eBay and I glue a patch inside on the back after each wash. The suede back sticks well and is thick enough to stop the plastic rubbing through it, unlike the cheap faux stuff. G is the master of muzzle removal so it was originally just getting plaited into her mane, but she then learned that if she pulled hard enough the bands would slide out, so now I'm afraid she has a length of gaffer tape over the plait too, to make the hair stick 🤦 But obviously this means that even in an emergency it now won't come off so guilt got the better of me and I forked out and ordered a Flexible Filly for her last week..... and it's just arrived this morning 👍 My friend has been using one on her mare since the spring and it hasn't rubbed her face at all. So from tomorrow G will be wearing a leather headcollar with the FF attached and although it will still need to be plaited into her mane, I know it will snap if it needs to.

I had G on restricted individual grazing for about 18 months but she's now muzzled and it with the herd and I actually think she's far happier than when she was on her own. Luckily she keeps to the periphery of the group and for a chunky cob has a swift spin and double-barrel if needed, so she doesn't need her teeth to protect herself from attack.

The bottom line is that I absolutely hate having to use the muzzle but there are just no yards around here that offer "starvation" paddocks, so we have to make the best of what we've got.... and Gracie has lost nearly 100kg in 10 months so 🤷‍♀️
 

Jane&Ziggy

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more as 'training' rather than leisure riding & being really clear with what I'm going to do each week or cycle
I am sure I should do this - could you give me an example of one of your 10 day cycles?

Gracie has lost nearly 100kg in 10 months
That is amazing!

I am sure Sid could stand to, he is really immense.

So I shall make the track narrower and get him a muzzle: put him out on what is essentially a long thin starvy paddock for half the day, and in with Mattie on long grass for the other half of the day, muzzled.

I will try to introduce a much stricter exercise regime.

I should weigh tape him, shouldn't I? To see if I'm getting anywhere?
 

PePo

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Sure, this is what the last 10 days looked like for us.

Day 1: 17km hack with trot intervals
Day 2: 10km hillwork hack - mainly walking with some slow trots
Day 3: 15 minutes lunging with bum builder (well, fake bum builder using tail bandages & pilates resistance bands 🤣)
Day 4: 8km field 'hack' in walk & trot with canter intervals - laps around field, basically!
Day 5: 30 minutes polework schooling session
Day 6: 35 minutes flat work schooling
Day 7: 15 minute lunging in the bum builder
Day 8: 19.5km hack with trot intervals - plus a few sneaky canters
Day 9: 6 km hack with canter intervals
Day 10: 5km hill hack in walk

Day off.

It's gotten easier but it still feels a lot to fit in, I'm not going to lie 🤣

But this was Pete end of May before we moved yards and this was him yesterday, so we are making progress. He still needs to lose weight & is fat pad-dy. He does has metabolic stuff (and one or two other things going on that are under vet care/careful management) which does complicate it, but generally I'm happy we are going in the right direction.

When he gets fitter, I'll pushing for longer hacks mixed with more fast work and longer schooling sessions.


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domane

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I was too "close" to see just how big she was, @Jane&Ziggy . This is last August Vs a couple of weeks ago. She still no skinny bean but that's her build. I can just about feel her ribs now if I poke hard!

It doesn't look like nearly 15 stone off either! 😂

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PePo

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ETA: He's weigh taped weekly and I measure the top, middle & base of his neck too. I do try to body condition score him too, which is probably more helpful overall.

I've made up a chart to fill in & put it up so I can see it, to keep us on target.

Take photo's too, as it's easy to lose focus - I was lunging him at 5.45am thinking 'Christ, you're still SO fat' & I had a real 'is it worth it?!' moment as I'm tired and everything hurts 🤣 But, seeing those pictures I can see a real difference - which is galvanising!
 

Jessey

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Definitely use some way of tracking loss, it will really help you find what is the most effective for him.

Hank has been out on lots of grass for 6 weeks now and I’m really pleased he hasn’t gained much weight (I can still easily feel ribs and points), he’s been wearing a shires muzzle 23 hours a day (he comes in for an hour for tea and to fill up on hay), it rubbed in a few places to start with but the skin seems to have toughened up and it’s not any more.
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Jess cannot bear the shires ones even after many hours of trying, but I got a dinky rugs one at a tack sale and she instantly took to it, so I got Hank one of those too but they are apparently much harder to eat from (hanks opinion) so I’ve left him in the shires but will swap if he starts to get porky! The DR one is softer, lighter and has big nostril holes which I like.
 
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Ale

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How many, or how much poo does he produce in a day? Quite a good way of monitoring their intake I find. Ales has been increasing and his weight has crept up a little which is fine as can still feel ribs etc but any more and I would start to reduce hay a little and give a smaller atrip of grass. Just another suggestion as lots of good advice already
 

PePo

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I can relate.

I see you don't lunge for long, 15 mins or so. Is that all at trot?
I don't lunge for long mainly as I lunge on the days I want to save time 😂 The resistance bands make it quite an intense work out too.

It's probably closer to 20 minutes in total as I warm up in walk and a bit of trot without the resistance bands & then mainly trot & canter intervals with walk rests. I then take off resistance bands and cool down without them.

Sometimes I omit the resistance bands and lunge over raised poles instead. It just depends what he's done & how much time he has.
 
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