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Bonnets; tell me about them.
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cecollins0811
Reg. Aug 2013
Posted 2017-04-18 3:14 PM (#7340454)
Subject: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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As a personal decision of riding your horse with a bonnet, why do you need one exactly? I was just given a nice one from a lady who's getting out of barrel racing and I've seen horses with them but I've never used one. What are the benefits of using one?
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RockinGR
Reg. Feb 2009
Posted 2017-04-18 3:21 PM (#7340456 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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My chiropractor says they'll jack up a poll PDQ...

Edited by RockinGR 2017-04-18 3:21 PM
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Frodo
Reg. Jul 2004
Posted 2017-04-18 3:21 PM (#7340457 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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Once upon a time I drove a long way to look at a barrel horse.  When the owner put a chain bonnet on him, I drove back home without even riding him.



 
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hannahbug
Reg. Mar 2017
Posted 2017-04-18 4:16 PM (#7340470 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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If you can't touch your horse's mouth without getting your nose broken, you need less bit and more basic training.
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cecollins0811
Reg. Aug 2013
Posted 2017-04-18 4:22 PM (#7340472 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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Sherry Cervix rides Arson in one (correct me if I'm wrong) but she's a pretty respectable barrel racer.
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IRunOnFaith
Reg. Dec 2009
Posted 2017-04-18 4:26 PM (#7340476 - in reply to #7340472)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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cecollins0811 - 2017-04-18 4:22 PM Sherry Cervix rides Arson in one (correct me if I'm wrong) but she's a pretty respectable barrel racer.

Being a respectable barrel racer has nothing to do with the training of the horse.  
Sherry used to ride him in one yes. As training progressed I don't believe she rides him in one any longer. 
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Nobody
Reg. Sep 2005
Posted 2017-04-18 4:27 PM (#7340478 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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A bonnet has its place for certain horses (I wouldn't use one of the chain ones). I have only tried a leather one once and it didn't do anything for the horse I used it on so never went on with it. There are some good trainers that do use them and that would be your best source of information. Usually for horses that have high heads and balance on the bonnet. 

Some people will say that if you use a bonnet or a tie down then your horse is not trained correctly. The two horses I have had to use tie downs on have been a trained reining horses and a trained cutting horse - I'm pretty sure they were well trained. My race bred horses don't ever seem to need them (go figure). 
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GLP
Reg. Oct 2013
Posted 2017-04-18 4:32 PM (#7340480 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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We used one on a ex-head horse turned barrel horse. He was used by a big, heavy guy who was heavy handed. He was probably 10 before the trainer we bought him from got him. She said she tried everything, but the bonnet was the only thing that kept his front feet on the ground in the turn. He was a rollback style horse and before he died of blister beetle poisoning, my sister was 2nd in her college region and was looking good to make the CNFR.
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Southtxponygirl
Reg. Nov 2006
Posted 2017-04-18 5:49 PM (#7340497 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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If your not useing a bonnet now and dont need one, dont use it now because someone gave it to you. 
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Barrelhorsehelp1
Reg. Jan 2014
Posted 2017-04-18 6:11 PM (#7340504 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.




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Keeps a horse stiff. Let's them get their head out and not up.
i prefer a horse in a bonnet over a tie down any day.

i have all wires ones, chain, leather and nylon, different ones for different types of horses. Love them. 

 
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OhMax
Reg. Feb 2013
Posted 2017-04-19 8:11 AM (#7340561 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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Chris Martin ran Jet in one for quite a while if I remember correctly.

They're a tool and like any tool can be used correctly or incorrectly.

If you're using one to keep a head down, I question it, although I have used a loose tie down to save my face on some project horses while we work through the issue. A regular tie down would be more effective for that purpose IMO. All of our rope horses go in regular tie downs, helps keep them together in the stop.

If your using one to help support a horse in the turns to hold everything together - IMO that works. Some horses and turning styles are going to work better without a tie down, with a regular tie down, some with a bonnet or browband style. Some will prefer leather, nylon, even wire - the severity of which could and has been debated. For most I think the end goal should be working without it, but there's been some pretty great horses who work in them too.


It's a good tool to have hanging in the tack room, but if what you have isn't broken I wouldn't try and fix it.

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barrelracingchick16
Reg. Aug 2004
Posted 2017-04-19 8:54 AM (#7340583 - in reply to #7340561)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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OhMax - 2017-04-19 8:11 AM


If your using one to help support a horse in the turns to hold everything together - IMO that works.


Agree with this... There are some horses, I've found especially in the seasoning stage that can gain a lot more confidence in their turns with a little support to hold things together. I don't generally keep these horses in bonnets forever, but just while they are "figuring things out".

Now I only use the rope bonnets, and they are what I prefer.
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Dinero10
Reg. Mar 2004
Posted 2017-04-19 9:23 AM (#7340594 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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 nothing wrong with a bonnet - used correctly -  use one on my barrel horse (we use rope bonnets)  - helps them keep their head level, but allows them to get their nose out to run, helps this one brace....
it is not for every horse.
as with all things new equipment when trying one - put it on them adjust correctly and let them hit it, before you get on.  (all new equipment is put on in round pen and me on the ground)

edited to add: and it flat outs ticks me off when people say the horse aint broke - this is a trippin horse to boot - so i think he is broke, broke.....


 

Edited by Dinero10 2017-04-20 3:05 PM
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Ashley Lynn
Reg. Jun 2005
Posted 2017-04-19 4:01 PM (#7340721 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.



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I strongly disagree with the statement about needing a tie down or bonnet means your horse isn't broke?! My rodeo horse is also my the main mount of my fiancé. He makes our living penning cattle for the public. He spends 6-7 days a week penning and sorting cattle on my 1D barrel horse HOWEVER, this horse runs barrels in a light tie down. To say he's unbroke is ludacris. I excercise him on his off days in either an Indian war bridle or a rein snapped around his neck!! He simply drops so hard with very little rate that I feel like he's snappier with something to balance on. His head isn't tied between his legs to save my nose or keep him from running off, just simply to help him balance. I can run him without one, but he's too round and not as snappy. As far as bonnets go, I've used them for years. I don't own a wire one, but I have a few rope ones and a flat nylon one that I love. It allows a horse to feel balanced and collected in a turn, yet lets them get their nose out to run. Not all horses will naturally be able to collect in a turn, some simply aren't built for it. Just like any boy or piece of equipment they can be abused, but in general if used correctly- they are a useful tool.
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3 To Go
Reg. Oct 2012
Posted 2017-04-20 12:19 AM (#7340818 - in reply to #7340476)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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IRunOnFaith - 2017-04-18 2:26 PM

cecollins0811 - 2017-04-18 4:22 PM Sherry Cervix rides Arson in one (correct me if I'm wrong) but she's a pretty respectable barrel racer.

Being a respectable barrel racer has nothing to do with the training of the horse.  
Sherry used to ride him in one yes. As training progressed I don't believe she rides him in one any longer. 

She uses a bonnet on Sweet (Easily Dashed), who runs left handed. Sweet is Dena Kirkpatrick's. I'd say they are both pretty accomplished riders and know what tools to use on a horse and when to use them. Sweet ran in the bonnet last I saw.
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Kaye
Reg. Oct 2006
Posted 2017-04-20 9:41 AM (#7340857 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.




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 I use a bonnet or a tie down generally on horses that want to elevate out of the turn. If I think they are elevating too much or stalling I'll try one for balance. My decision to use one is usually based on turn style; I'll use a bonnet on a naturally stiff horse and a tie down on a more flexible horse. It's a good tool to have in your kit. 

Edited by Kaye 2017-04-20 9:42 AM
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jlrace
Reg. Oct 2004
Posted 2017-04-20 9:48 AM (#7340864 - in reply to #7340454)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.





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I have a very broke, very well trained, extremely turny little (14 hand) mare that runs in a bonnet.  It has nothing to do with her head flying up when I touch her-because normally I don't touch her, and if I do she gives to the bit and stays level, but everything to do with her handling the ground.  Sometimes in deep ground, at the bottom of the drag she just gets stuck on the backside.  It helps her tremendously to have that bonnet to balance when that happens.  It's loose and other than that I don't need it on her.
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astreakinchic
Reg. Sep 2011
Posted 2017-04-20 9:56 AM (#7340866 - in reply to #7340457)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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Frodo - 2017-04-18 4:21 PM

Once upon a time I drove a long way to look at a barrel horse.  When the owner put a chain bonnet on him, I drove back home without even riding him.



 

why?



Yes some horses need more broke. Yes chain bonnets can be harsh. BUT some horses just click with certain gear on them and will work their butts off even though it is a harsher piece of gear AND they are very broke.

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astreakinchic
Reg. Sep 2011
Posted 2017-04-20 10:00 AM (#7340867 - in reply to #7340561)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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OhMax - 2017-04-19 9:11 AM

Chris Martin ran Jet in one for quite a while if I remember correctly.

They're a tool and like any tool can be used correctly or incorrectly.

If you're using one to keep a head down, I question it, although I have used a loose tie down to save my face on some project horses while we work through the issue. A regular tie down would be more effective for that purpose IMO. All of our rope horses go in regular tie downs, helps keep them together in the stop.

If your using one to help support a horse in the turns to hold everything together - IMO that works. Some horses and turning styles are going to work better without a tie down, with a regular tie down, some with a bonnet or browband style. Some will prefer leather, nylon, even wire - the severity of which could and has been debated. For most I think the end goal should be working without it, but there's been some pretty great horses who work in them too.


It's a good tool to have hanging in the tack room, but if what you have isn't broken I wouldn't try and fix it.


100% this!

Good post! Tool in the tool box.
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OhMax
Reg. Feb 2013
Posted 2017-04-20 10:53 AM (#7340892 - in reply to #7340866)
Subject: RE: Bonnets; tell me about them.


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astreakinchic - 2017-04-20 9:56 AM

Frodo - 2017-04-18 4:21 PM

Once upon a time I drove a long way to look at a barrel horse.  When the owner put a chain bonnet on him, I drove back home without even riding him.



 

why?



Yes some horses need more broke. Yes chain bonnets can be harsh. BUT some horses just click with certain gear on them and will work their butts off even though it is a harsher piece of gear AND they are very broke.


We have a gal around here who I think fancies herself a trainer - I honestly couldn't even tell you her name, but I've seen her run enough and sat by while she "coaches" the girls who come with her to know I wouldn't touch a horse she worked on with a 20ft pole.

They all run in chain bonnets.

It's a tool, I repeat. I struggle to believe all 6 horses you haul to a $20 jackpot need one...



I see so so many people using equipment because so and so big name uses it, but they don't have the knowledge and self awareness to know why they use it, how to use it, and when to stop using it.

A chainsaw is only an appropriate juggling apparatus if you know how to juggle - if you don't it's a dangerous disaster, start with tennis balls.
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