Going Bitless: My Story


Hi! My name is Casie Bazay. I'm a mom, a freelance writer, and a certified equine acupressure practitioner.

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14 Responses

  1. Robynne Catheron says:

    I did the same thing, pulled my horse’s bit clear through one side of his mouth! I felt so awful. I’ve never used a bit since. I have two different bitless bridles, one is an LG-Zaum (the cheek pieces look like metal wagon wheels), and the other one is the Lite Rider bridle from Cynthia Cooper (Natural Horse) in Australia. My horses like them, and they’re equally soft and responsive. I’ve heard mixed reviews on Dr Cook’s, that there’s a delay in release due to the reins threading through rings and then crossing under, and that there is a transition/retraining period because of it. Do you find that to be true?

    • then5925 says:

      Hi Robynne,

      I look forward to trying some of the other bitless bridles out there as well. I can’t honestly give an opinion on Dr. Cook’s bridle yet because I’ve only used it once. It’s been snowy and very wet for the last week or so. I will be trying it on all of my horses though. I’ll let you know!

  2. AnneMarie Azijn says:

    Congratulations! I am very happy for your horse!

  3. Tomas says:

    Thanks for sharing! But what if your horse has a hot temper?

    • then5925 says:

      Hi Tomas–I wouldn’t think temperament should matter. If the horse will respond to a bit, he will likely respond to a bitless bridle (or light hackamore). It’s just a different cueing system.

  4. Hi Casie, I just discovered your blog & love it! Great information – wish I’d found you sooner!

  5. Janine says:

    Hi Casie, I just came across your blog. So glad I did!! I just starting riding with the bit less bridle and love it. I’ve had my gelding for 8 weeks now. I was told from a few people along with his owner that he was hard to ride and needed an experienced rider. His owner gave him up because she had fallen off him and broke her collar bone. She was a nervous rider and kept holding him back and not letting him go forward. I’m not sure why she fell off. I have a feeling that it wasn’t him who caused it to happen. Anyway to make a long story short, I told her that I would love to have him and started ground work with him. I really paid attention to what he was trying to tell me. He is a gentle soul who just wants to please. I read up on all kinds of bits to use and not to use and just wasn’t happy with what I was reading. I accidently came across bitless bridles. The more I read the more it made sense to me to use one. Which I did and so far so good. He is so happy and relaxed. I honestly think he was misread. It’s all about patience and listening to your horse with not just your ears but with your eyes. His name is Freedom. Janine 🙂

    • Casie says:

      Hi Janine,

      So glad you had the patience to really work with this horse and try other options. I think what’s seen as misbehavior is often just the horse trying to communicate with us–they have no other way to tell us they’re in pain or they don’t like something. We have to be willing to listen, just like you said. Best of luck to you both!

  6. Chris Hurner says:

    I have been riding with the Dr. Cooks bitless bridle for 10 years now, I love this concept, Louie (my main man) hated bits….but loves the bitless. I also have two rescue horses that I will sometimes let new girls ride, they ride ONLY in the bitless bridle, No one will ever put a bit in any of my horses mouths

  7. jazzy says:

    I got taught to ride in a rope halter and I’ve never ridden any of my horses in a bit ever and most of them are fresh off the track thoroughbreds! It’s so upsetting to know that people think bits are the only way and it breaks my heart seeing all these poor horses in constant pain all over the internet.

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