I meant to do this a while ago, but never got around to it and just found this draft sitting in my folder!
I think I got this bit around November so I've been using it a while.
I use Mylers on pretty much every horse I've ever had. I've found that they're thin enough to fit comfortably in mouths, too uncomfortable to lean on but kind enough to encourage a soft contact. So this is what I had Misty in. But even using a noseband to discourage opening her mouth and trying to teach her to listen to my body weight and seat aids for transitions she was still quite unhappy with the bit.
I think mostly because she was so used to a curb bit. You get the action of the shanks applying pressure via the curb strap first, plus there's no contact to speak of. Anywho, in teaching her dressage I wanted the softest bit possible to encourage her to accept contact. Enter a happy mouth.
|Modeling the bit|
I went with a D-ring version since I was also wanting the added control for jumping and showing hunters. The first few rides weren't encouraging. She was trying to figure out the bit, chewing on it a lot, trying to lean on it or tossing her head in the air alternately.
Now that it's been a few months though, I have to say I'm really happy with the bit. It hasn't gotten any chew marks. I don't like how the plastic yellows as it ages, but that's pretty unavoidable. Misty has settled down and seems to really appreciate the bit for working with contact. I still use the Myler for riding western but the Happy Mouth is for all our English work. She's definitely much happier taking contact and steady in the bridle. We still obviously have quite a ways to go, but I went and bought a second Happy Mouth that's a loose ring to show dressage in and keep the D-ring for jumping.
|New bit on left, old bit on right|