The Flexible Filly Slow Feed Grazing Muzzle is, thankfully, nothing like the typical heavy, cage-like apparatus. The design has been completely rethought to be softer, lighter and less confining. When you first get your muzzle, you’ll find it does take a little time to get the right fit on your horse or pony, but don’t worry, there is lots of help available and he or she will be grazing happily in no time.
Plus, by avoiding these common mistakes listed below, we’ll make sure you don’t get your muzzle in a muddle on day one!
- Picking the wrong size: The muzzles are very flexible so you can adjust them to fit, but
it’s still helpful to try and choose the closest size to your horse’s nose conformation. There’s no one size fits all; we’ve had some problems where horses have had very long or very small noses and don’t fit into the size you’d expect. As a rule of thumb; long nose, go up a size, little nose, go down a size.
- Fitting it and just hoping for the best: They do take some thought, so be prepared to invest a little bit of time into it when it first arrives. Once they are right, these muzzles work perfectly for as long as you need them to, so it’s worth the effort. Here’s a little guide to initial fitting:
- Fix with temporary ties and try on your horse with his head slightly down. Check the grazing hole lines up with the mouth.
- Hand graze him with the temporary ties on so you can see how it fits. If the sides bulge, shorten them, otherwise you may encourage grazing from the side.
- Once you’re happy, secure with the permanent ties and pull tight to ensure the muzzle doesn’t slip around. Check your pinky finger fits between the nose and muzzle.
- Try grazing again to make doubly sure it doesn’t slide from side to side and everything looks comfy.
- Leaving it too baggy: The muzzle will move around and allow your horse to get grass from the side if it’s too baggy. We all know how agile those noses can be!
- Not enlarging the hole: The hole is designed to be made bigger according to the individual horse. It does need to be widened in most cases otherwise your horse may try to pull it off to get to the grass! Make sure you enlarge the hole so he gets enough grass for his needs. Use scissors to cut and then smooth off. Top tip: an electric Scholl pedicure foot file works a treat!
Here are the veterinary recommendations for grazing muzzle hole sizes:
- 24/7 full time grazing in a muzzle – 3.5 to 4 cm.
- Restricted grazing for horses who require substantially less sugar intake – 2 to 2.5 cm.
Remember to take your horse’s individual needs into account. The muzzle comes with a 2cm hole ready for you to adjust.
- Tying with the wrong cable ties, or modifying with ties/tapes: Our ties are designed to break for safety – and to be easily changed if the size or fit needs modifying.
- Using a halter that rubs: This is usually nothing to do with the muzzle (unless the fit isn’t right and, for example, it’s being pulled down over a nose that’s too long for it!) Padding on the halter – particularly sheepskin – is a good way to make sure everything stays comfy.
The team at Comfy Horse HQ are here to help you every step of the way, with sizing, fitting or any other issues you might encounter. If you have any doubt over the fit of your muzzle please send a picture to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be able to help you. Remember, your purchase is covered by a six month warranty if things go wrong, but with a little time and working together to iron out any issues, we’re sure they won’t!
Finally, if you’re more of a visual person, there are a couple of good instructional videos on YouTube for you to take a look at: