tounge ties

we have a school horse who works much better if she has her tounge tied. shes easy to do, doesnt throw a fit or anything, the problem is that a customer leasing her cant seem to get it done correctly. normally, we use shoelace. is there an easier way to tie her tounge? ive heard of ones you can buy, or using rubber bands. can someone explain any other ways besides shoe lace?

7 Responses to tounge ties

  1. SeaSmoke says:

    I use about a 10″ section of pantyhose. I soak it first in water and I use Lavery’s Bit Sweet after, which has a glycerin product in there to keep his mouth comfortable.

  2. jmorse says:

    What does the horse do without a tongue tie?

    Jeff Morse | Green Meads Farm |Richmond, MA
    Carriage Driving & Morgan Horses

  3. SeaSmoke says:


    I know you were speaking to the original poster, but I thought I would identify the problems I was having with my gelding and see if you had any ideas.

    My gelding’s tongue is placed high up in his throat/mouth (acording to the vet). He also broke his jaw when he was a weanling and his mouth is oddly shaped. He has his teeth done annualy.

    I have used multiple half cheek bits. He has been the most comfortable in a copper Dr. Bristol and a Myler comfort snaffle. I base comfort on the quietness of his mouth. Last year, he gaped and hung his tongue out of his mouth. Originally, I tried using drawtite nosebands, but realized I was creating more of a problem. I have stopped using a caveson. When I do put one on it is a Teater and is loose. This stopped the gaping, but not his tongue. He doesn’t panic when his tongue goes over the bit, but he looks uncomfortable and I have to stop and pull his tongue back under. The tongue tie seems to be the only thing that has worked, but I would be open to suggestions!

  4. Carley says:

    she bites her tounge

  5. Sibilla says:

    Pantyhose work really well, I think I usually get the knee-high size. As far as a horse biting their tongue, I have seen several horses bite their tongues while tied, usually on the level of the tongue below the tie.

  6. Vintage_Rider says:

    Please be careful and help instruct your customer. The damage can be both psychological as well as physical. I am dealing with one now where the damage was so severe, there is permanent scar tissue, and you should see how much fun it is to even administer a wormer….

  7. jmorse says:

    Carley, A couple of thoughts….the mouth is where horses manifest anxiety. Anxiety can be mental, physical or both. To be fair to the horse it is incumbent on the owner to investigate the source of the anxiety. Mouth and tongue issues may have zero to do with teeth, bits, mouth conformation, etc. Anxiety from a bad hock can manifest itself in a horse cocking his jaw. That said, there are defense mechanisms that can be displayed long after discomfort and pain are gone. In these cases, a tongue tie is not out of the question to teach a horse where to carry his tongue. The problem often is that because it successfully removes the *symptom*, it is left on forever. They can and should be weaned off of them. A high tongue is not necessarily a reason for a tongue tie. I had an Arab pony once in a clinic that had his tongue severed straight across immediately below where the bits would lie. He went perfectly well. From his performance, you’d never know he was missing the bottom 3″ of his tongue! I had another Morgan who had a tongue tie left on his tongue overnight before I got him. His tongue had a major permanent constriction and a 90 degree turn right where the bits would lie. He was a terrific carriage horse and went in a mullen mouth Liverpool with never a tongue tie. People often make the mistake of tightening the noseband and raising up the bits. This creates more anxiety and more importantly it creates a situation where it is *impossible* for the horse to *fix* the problem himself. Generally, if you fix the source of anxiety loosen things up a little, horses will fix the problem themselves over time. They don;t usually *like* to have their tongue over the bit! I have only used a tongue tie maybe 6 days total in the last 25 years.

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