Why Does My Horse Have Lip Wounds?

May 11, 2022

Why Does My Horse Have Lip Wounds?

We always want what is best for our horse. There are a number of reasons your horse may develop mouth wounds or split lips.  No one likes seeing their horse in pain.  If your horse has developed a mouth wound, your vet may advise to rest the mouth for a week or two, until the wound has completely healed. 

Let's look at WHY your horse has developed these wounds so we can make them a much happier horse in the future!

1. The main reasons lip splitting occurs is if the horse is pulling or leaning on the bit. You may feel like they are dull in the hand or unresponsive.  Why don't you try a softer bit? This will help give the horses lips some suspension in the contact. 

- Try a rubber bit! First we want to eliminate that your horse may be leaning due to mouth damage or highly sharp bars on the mandible bone (jaw). Horses with these symptoms will shift the position of the bit in their mouth, which may feel like leaning to you. He may find a rubber bit much more comfortable in his mouth and stop leaning all together! 

Suggestion: Bombers Loose Ring Moulded Mullen - Trust Inno Sense Flexi Soft Eggbutt

- If a rubber bit hasn't helped discourage your horse from leaning, we'll look at bits that encourage him to lift.  Look at a single jointed bit, not all single jointed bits have bad stigma. We specifically love the Sprenger Dynamic RS Single Joint in times like this.  

Suggestion: Sprenger Dynamic RS Single Joint 40215

2. Your horse has a short smile. Horses with short smiles do not have the length of lip for curved bit styles. The curved mouth piece will overstretch your horses lips, and the contact may begin to cause splitting. In this scenario, straight mouthpiece styles are recommended.

Suggestion: Most of the Fager Range are great for this. Preference to mullen bits if you can like the Fager Sara

3. You horses lip splitting may have started with a past rider and there is now a lack of collagen and elasticity in the lips. You can look at wrapping your bit with latex tape to thicken and soften the the bit in the corner of your horses mouth.  This will help disperse the pressure of the bit across a wider surface area.  

Suggestion: Sealtex Latex Bit Wrap

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