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Horse Bits: The differences between an eggbutt bit, snaffle bit and curb bit explained

Snaffle Bits vs. Curb Bits, Which One Do You Pick?

Horse BitsDid you know that there are only two basic types of bit? Find out the difference between leverage and non-leverage bits in our FREE guide, Horse Bits, and learn which bit is best for your horse. Click the button below and we'll send you a download link to your copy of this FREE guide and we'll also notify you by email whenever we post new tips!

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Download your FREE guide from MyHorse Daily and discover whether a full cheek snaffle bit or a loose ring snaffle bit would work better for your horse.

MyHorse Daily Managing Editor Amy Herdy

MyHorse Daily Managing Editor Amy Herdy

Dear fellow horse lover,

Horse Bits

Do you know which bit is best for your horse?

Have you ever stared at a wall full of horse bits and felt like a kid in a horse-bit candy shop? So many types of horses bits! Eggbutt bit, snaffle bit, curb bit…How do you decide?

As a kid growing up riding horses in Kentucky, I never paid that much attention to types of horse bits—I just grabbed whatever bridle looked like it would fit, put the horse bit in my horse’s mouth and off we went. I remember seeing a curb bit or two, maybe a snaffle bit once in a while, but I couldn’t have told you the difference between an eggbutt bit and a full-cheek snaffle bit.

Fast forward twenty or so years (don’t remind me!) and today, everything I do—and choose—for my horse is done with a lot more care, including debating between a snaffle bit and a curb it.
Now I know that a curb bit is very different from a snaffle bit, and what the difference is between a full cheek snaffle bit and an eggbutt bit.

Find Out Which Bit is Best For Your Horse

Horse BitsThe "Bit Wall" at your local tack shop may be a bit intimidating. With all the choices of horse bits out there, which is best for your horse? Our FREE guide, Horse Bits, breaks down the array of options so you become a smarter shopper.

Click the button below and we'll send you a download link to your copy of this FREE guide and we'll also notify you by email whenever we post new tips!

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Speaking of the eggbutt bit, I remember laughing the first time I heard its name—it sounds like a joke. But it’s actually a type of snaffle bit. The name comes from the somewhat egg-shaped connection between the mouthpiece and the bit-ring. The mouthpiece of an eggbutt bit can be made of a variety of materials (as can any horse bit), including copper and synthetic.

The eggbutt bit is one of the more gentle of the snaffle bits. The reason this horse bit is so gentle is that it doesn’t pinch the corners of the mouth. It’s a good horse bit to use to start young horses with, although it can slide through the mouth.

Today, I use a loose ring snaffle bit on my mare, a KK Ultra by Herm Sprenger. This horse bit is built for a narrower palate—which she has, being a petite Appaloosa. It also has an aurigan mouthpiece, which means it’s a horse bit that encourages salivation. It’s the one horse bit that she seems to enjoy—she’s never refused it, and she also plays with it during breaks in our action.

Does Your Horse Fight the Bit? Your Solution Here.

Horse BitsOne of the biggest mistakes horse owners make is choosing the wrong bit for their horse. The bit is one of many aids at your disposable, and you don't need a big bit to get your horse's attention. Our FREE guide, Horse Bits, helps you find the best bit for your horse.

Click the button below and we'll send you a download link to your copy of this FREE guide and we'll also notify you by email whenever we post new tips!

Please provide your name and email address to download this free guide.

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I’ve found keeping her occupied and happy is a very good thing when I’m on her back, and if a horse bit can help me do that, well, more power to it. She’s just 4, and so she still has all that youthful energy.

If I ask her canter, she thinks, Why canter, when a gallop would be so much more fun? That’s when I’m glad that I have a horse bit in her mouth and I didn’t decide to start riding her with a hackamore , although, no offense to you brave souls who choose to ride without a horse bit at all, whether it’s a snaffle bit or an eggbutt bit or a curb bit.

Amy Herdy
Amy Herdy
MyHorse Daily Managing Editor

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