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Old 02-10-2015, 07:04 PM   #1
Wyogirl
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Join Date: Feb 2015
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Default Moving to a bosal

Hello,
I have an eight year old gelding that was started in a snaffle then was moved to a shank bit but as I am learning more and moving myself towards the vaquero style I would like to get him going in a bosal. He is light in the shank bit (it has a mouthpiece broken in two places, a "reining" bit) and moves off my leg and neck reins well. My question relates more the size of the bosal. I have heard that you start them in the bosal at a larger size, a 3/4 or 5/8, but I'm wondering, since we already have some softness, if I could be successful starting in a 1/2? Or, I suppose, should I move him to a bosal at all?
(This horse has been my teacher, as I learn new things and put the into practice he has been my guinea pig, so that's partially why I want to try this with him, to teach him but also myself)
Thans
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:23 AM   #2
Tosch
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: A German in Switzerland
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Since none of the experts here has answered yet, I tell you my story and maybe there are parallels that might help you out.
When I got my then 10 yr. old gelding he had been ridden in a snaffle, "shank" snaffle, Billy Allen bit, bosal (I do not know how) and and hackamore bit.
I went back to the snaffle, riding him with "hackamore hands", i.e. operating the reins as I would if he were in a hackamore/bosal. This is working fine now and I am transitioning us to the hackamore by two-reining him (snaffle plus hackamore,) sometimes starting the ride in a snaffe and finishing it with the hackarome or I ride him just with the hackamore. Since he handles fine in the snaffle I had gotten the advice from someone very knowledgable to go with a 5/8" bosal which is "soft but not a rag". I got it made by someone who told me he knows what this term means and the horse and I get along fine with it. And when the time comes I plan on moving us to the 3/8" bosal for the remainder of the journey, skipping the 1/2" size.
Hope this helps you some.
Have a good journey!

Last edited by Tosch; 02-16-2015 at 11:40 AM.
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Old 02-16-2015, 08:50 PM   #3
Jimmy
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Join Date: Aug 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tosch View Post
Since none of the experts here has answered yet, I tell you my story and maybe there are parallels that might help you out.
When I got my then 10 yr. old gelding he had been ridden in a snaffle, "shank" snaffle, Billy Allen bit, bosal (I do not know how) and and hackamore bit.
I went back to the snaffle, riding him with "hackamore hands", i.e. operating the reins as I would if he were in a hackamore/bosal. This is working fine now and I am transitioning us to the hackamore by two-reining him (snaffle plus hackamore,) sometimes starting the ride in a snaffe and finishing it with the hackarome or I ride him just with the hackamore. Since he handles fine in the snaffle I had gotten the advice from someone very knowledgable to go with a 5/8" bosal which is "soft but not a rag". I got it made by someone who told me he knows what this term means and the horse and I get along fine with it. And when the time comes I plan on moving us to the 3/8" bosal for the remainder of the journey, skipping the 1/2" size.
Hope this helps you some.
Have a good journey!
A 5/8 is usually the go to if the horse all ready has some feel developed.
A good hackamore you can easily bend in your hand, but it will spring back also. Some duller horses need a heavy 3/4. I start mine in a 5/8 usually.
I do not think it is a necessary step to two rein with a snaffle/bosal. I know it is done sometimes, but to me it's like mixing milk and orange juice. yuck.
If your horse is ready to work in a 3/8, then I would begin with a spade and two rein from there.
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