Chifney Bit and Headpiece

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Chifney Bit and Headpiece

Horse Wear

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60% positive

2 reviews from the community

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Review of "Chifney Bit and Headpiece"

published 07/12/2014 | Trish1996
Member since : 05/12/2014
Reviews : 9
Members who trust : 0
About me :
Not for me
Pro If it is your ONLY device in an emergency
Cons Permanent damage or death can occur.
very helpful
Value for Money

"Chifney Bit, an outdated device"

Okay, so I hate to give poor reviews but sometimes it is necessary.

I have owned horses and mules my whole life and have grown up in times when harsh bits, chifney bits, cruel spurs and combative training techniques were common everyday solutions. Fortunately, most of us have learned better so we do better.

My early training devices consisted of harsh bits, big spurs, whips, and casting equipment (that is equipment used to put a horse on the ground). This was what I was taught and for most of the horse world, this was all that was known. We didn't have much in the way of books and the few trainers we did have were usually schooled learning how to use the same devices.

Keep in mind that I do not wish any of these items to be abolished as it is not the devices that create the pain, but the user. If you abolish these items, it will only lead to the creation of more diabolical inventions as mankind is capable of making. You cannot outlaw things quickly enough - and it is not the solution. Education is the solution. As humans, most of the time - we do better when we know better.

There is no shame in having used these devices, but when you know a better way, and it is less harmful, then it brings you more profit in all ways, more money, more time, more comfort, more safety.

The Chifney bit is a device used to prevent rearing in horses. Rearing is a behavioral reaction to fear. The Chifney bit causes pain. Pain causes fear - so he still wants to rear if that is his primary avoidance tactic. Therefore, he may not rear due to the pain or he may rear or he may rear and overreact causing injury or death to himself or others.

The Chifney bit has probably, historically, saved more lives than it has taken. It has probably lessened more injuries than it has caused. But that is not reason enough to continue using it. Fortunately, there are many other solutions. Unfortunately, those solutions usually take more time.

Well-trained horses do not require such devices when handled by well-schooled handlers. Poorly trained and fearful horses do not require such devices when handled by well-schooled (current theory) trainers. But these devices still have a healthy market for poorly trained horses being handled by average to poorly schooled handlers.

And for this reason I believe these devices could still have a purpose, in that the benefit can outweigh the cost (most times). However, one needs to always keep in mind when using such a device that it is being used as a shortcut for appropriate training and should only be used in a dire emergency when no other method or equipment may be available. There are several manufacturers of specific halters designed by modern trainers that can be purchased that would be as effective, if not more so that the Chifney. And they are halters which are designed to not inflict pain or injury, they involve no bit in the mouth but only pressure on the poll - or top of the horses head. They are much more humane according to most vets and much less likely to cause a violent over-reaction.

When I grew up, working on the track, the Chifney was the only device available to load horses into the gate or into the trailer. We have many more options today.

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Comments on this review

  • LiveMusicLoverLyn published 14/08/2017
    Not explained that well really
  • xxfoxyredxx published 07/12/2014
    vh x
  • euphie published 07/12/2014
    vh :o)
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Product Information : Chifney Bit and Headpiece

Manufacturer's product description

Horse Wear

Product Details

Long Name: Bit and Headpiece

Type: Horse Wear

Manufacturer: Chifney


Listed on Ciao since: 28/07/2007