Top 10 Best Bits for Young Horses in 2023

Horse Tack, Equine Care

The long-awaited moment is here and it’s finally time to start your young horse! It’s one of the biggest steps in your young horse’s life and you can hardly contain your excitement (and spoiler alert, we can’t either!) You’ve been by their side patiently watching them grow and tactfully preparing them for their next big adventure.

Now that it’s finally time for their very first ride, you’re taking all the necessary precautions to make sure it goes as smoothly as possible. You’ve picked out their new bridle, found a saddle that fits them nicely, and taught them all the basics to prepare them for their first ride.

But when it comes to picking out their first bit, you hesitate. We all know that the first bit is like a first impression. It must be a positive experience otherwise it could take much longer to teach them to trust the foreign object in their mouth. The last thing you want is for your horse to be uncomfortable.

At Equine Outfitters LLC, we understand how big of a commitment the first bit is for your young horse, and we want it to be a smooth process. With our bit bank of over 1,000 new bits, we’ve narrowed down our top choices so you don’t have to. Within this guide, you’ll learn how to accurately measure your horse’s mouth, learn key anatomy points, and view our favorite bits for young horses. Don’t worry, all of these bits have our ‘baby horse seal of approval’ so you can make the best choice for your youngster. 

What You Need to Know Before Choosing a Bit

When choosing your young horse’s first bit, it’s imperative that the bit fits the size and shape of your horse’s mouth. Each mouth has unique characteristics that need to be understood before you start trying bits. One horse might have a shallow palate and a thick tongue, whereas another might have lots of wiggle room.

So, before we even talk about the types of bits, we need to know the correct measurements and anatomy. Follow our next steps to learn exactly how to fit your horse for their first bit.

The Importance of a Thorough Dental Check

Before you go bit shopping, it is imperative that you have a licensed equine veterinarian do a thorough mouth exam of your young horse. As horses mature, their mouth develops, and new teeth come in. Out of those changes, the most important to check are the wolf teeth.

What are wolf teeth exactly? Wolf teeth sit in the location where the bit goes, and come in between 5-12 months of age. Not all horses develop wolf teeth, so it is important to have your vet check for these.  Without removal, wearing a bit or hackamore could be painful for your horse. Luckily removal is quite simple, and the recovery is relatively quick.

There are several other benefits to having your vet check your young horse’s mouth. The first is they can detect any current problems and fix them early. Horses may develop hooks on the upper and lower portions of their jaw or have malocclusions that need addressing. Caps which are remnants of baby teeth can get stuck and will need removal. The second benefit is your vet can give you great information about your horse’s mouth. They can give details about your horse’s mouth shape, tongue thickness and overall space which will help you determine the proper bit style.

How to Measure Horse’s Mouth for a Bit

You know how baling twine is one of the most versatile products at the barn? Well, that statement rings true here! You can either use a ready-made bit measuring device, or with a little ingenuity, you can create your own.

To create your own measuring tool, all you need is a sturdy type of string, marker, and a willing friend. While you could do this on your own if you’re a one-man-band that enjoys adventures, we do strongly recommend having a friend to keep your horse calm.

First step is to mark one end of the string so you have a clear starting point. After it’s marked, you need to put the string in your horse’s mouth. Make sure to line up the starting point with one outside corner of their mouth. Next with your marker, mark where the other outside corner of their mouth sits on the string. After removing the string from their mouth, you can measure the distance between those points. Voila’! You’ve got your horse’s bit size completed. Praise your pony (and your friend) for being such willing participants.

How to Determine Your Horse’s Mouth Shape

Now that we have your horse’s mouth size, we need to learn about the unique characteristics to your horse’s mouth anatomy. Within the mouth, there are two main areas that need attention. The tongue and the palate.

When you gently lift the lips, one of the first things you’ll be able to see are the teeth and tongue. With the lips lifted, I want you to notice if the tongue is softly resting within the parameters of the mouth, or if it’s protruding. If it’s bulging from the teeth, then it’s most likely a larger tongue that could benefit from a bit with more tongue relief.

Next we will check how much space your horse has to accommodate a bit. This space is between the horse’s tongue and the roof of their mouth (also known as the palate). You want to carefully slip your finger over their tongue where the bit would sit. When you do this, notice how much room you have. Can you move your finger up and down with room to spare, or do you feel like your finger is tightly lodged between the roof and tongue? This will determine if your horse has a high or low palate.

Best Bits for Young Horses

Now that you know your horse’s mouth size and general anatomy, it’s time to pick out the perfect bit for your young horse. We combed through our bit bank of over 1,000+ bits to select our top favorites. All of our recommended bits have smooth mouthpieces without leverage for a comfortable experience.

Feel free to peruse through our list below to find your young horse’s perfect bit.


Bit #1: TRUST Inno Sense Flexi Eggbutt Bit

Our first recommendation is the Trust Inno Sense Flexi Eggbutt bit. Handmade in the Netherlands, this bit is soft, very flexible, and straightforward for young horses. The fixed rings offer stability while the mouthpiece encourages acceptance with a gentle touch. The anatomical curvature is friendly for the majority of horses and is wonderful for introducing contact. *This bit also comes in a loose ring version, which can be found here.


Bit #2: TRUST Inno Sense Medium Port Eggbutt Bit

Prefer a polymer bit that allows tongue freedom? Similar to the above bit, the Trust Inno Sense Medium Port Eggbutt bit offers the same stability and softness. But, with its deeper curvature, it is a great bit for tongue relief. This bit also has a very mild flex, giving it more shape and balance.

*This bit also comes in a loose ring version, which can be found here.


Bit #3: Fager Maria Titanium Fixed Cheek Bit

The Fager Maria Titanium Fixed Cheek bit has a gentle anatomical shape with added flexibility from the double jointed pieces. All of the joints are rounded for maximum comfort, and has a gentle shape that glides over the tongue. The Fager bits are properly balanced so the bit never tips forward in the mouth, which makes it one of the most comfortable bits on the market. Made from Titanium, this bit is extremely lightweight and has no taste.

*This bit also comes in a loose ring version, which can be found here.

fager maria titanium loose ring bit


Bit #4: TRUST Leather Wrapped Mullen Hunter Dee Bit

The Trust Leather Wrapped Mullen Hunter Dee bit is a universally liked bit that’s great for young horses. The unique element about leather bits is that they have the ability to mildly conform to the shape of your horse’s mouth. So, if you’re not 100% certain which bit is anatomically correct for your horse, you can use this to help determine the shape of future bits. This bit also produces a pleasant taste for the horse, which encourages softening and acceptance.

*This bit also comes in a loose ring version, which can be found here.


Bit #5: Neue Schule Turtle Tactio+ Flex Eggbutt

For horses that prefer tongue pressure over pressure on the bars, this three piece Neue Schule Turtle Tactio+ Flex Eggbutt bit is a wonderful choice. The design encourages the rein aids to direct pressure to the center of the tongue and away from the bars of the mouth. The eggbutt rings also provide stability that offer clear turning aids. Made from the Salox material, this bit warms quickly and provides additional mouth moisture.

*This bit also comes in a loose ring version, which you can find here.


Bit #6: EquiKind Hunter Dee Roller Bit

The gentle three piece EquiKind Hunter Dee Roller bit is a fantastic option for young horses. This bit is a lightweight durable plastic that’s very gentle on the mouth. The ‘D’ rings help keep the bit centered and stable in the mouth. The center roller is also great at teaching horses to accept the bit while the enhanced apple flavor encourages a positive experience.


Bit #7: Full Cheek Brass Alloy Peanut Snaffle

The Full Cheek Brass Allow Peanut Snaffle is one of our favorite full cheek bits for young horses. It’s a soft three piece snaffle with the added steering benefits of a full cheek. Since the rings put more surface area pressure on the sides of their face, it helps with teaching balance within tighter turns. The brass alloy is a warmer metal and encourages salivation. As with any full cheek, remember you’ll need keepers!


Bit #8: Equikind+ Peanut Link Baucher Bit

The EquiKind + Peanut Link Baucher bit is a gentle three piece lozenge that encourages swallowing and acceptance. Bauchers which are sometimes called “hanging cheeks” are a good option for young horses because the hung rings offer a great deal of stability for the horse. Contrary to popular belief, bauchers do not apply poll pressure since there isn’t any leverage. With the material being a soft rubber, this bit is also good for horses that are sensitive to metal.



Bit #9: EquiKind Flexi Straight Hunter Dee Bit

For the horse with a low palate but a larger tongue, the EquiKind Flexi Straight Hunter Dee bit is a fantastic option. Like other bits with tongue freedom, this one isn’t shaped towards the roof of the mouth. So if the horse has a shallow palate, this bit could be a great option. The mild flex plastic offers a soft touch while offering a subtle taste of apples.

Bit #10: Shires Loose Ring Blue Alloy Mullen bit

Our last bit is the Shires Loose Ring Blue Alloy Mullen bit. For horses with bigger tongues and a higher palate, this bit has a  great anatomical curve with the added simplicity of a mullen mouthpiece. The loose rings are noted for discouraging leaning and bracing. Another benefit of loose rings is the rings have movement, which helps horses not feel trapped. The blue sweet iron also produces a flavorful taste that will oxidize over time.

*This bit also comes in a dee ring version, which can be found here.



We hope you found this guide helpful and are on the right track to find your young horse’s perfect bit. If you have any specific questions about bits for your horse, feel free to reach out.