*Disclaimer: This review is for a product I purchased with my own money after doing my own research. There are links in this post to products I have purchased, but none are affiliate links. I get absolutely nothing in exchange for my unbiased review of this product. I just really like this muzzle and a lot of people have asked me about it, and since I'm going on year three using it on two horses, I figured it was time*
Last summer I had every intention of reviewing the Thinline Flexible Filly muzzle, since I liked it so much after Cinna's first year in one (2019) that I bought Ruby one for 2020. Alas, like so many other great posts I start crafting in my brain, it never made it to the page. Story of my life, amiright?
|I know the ship is free now but I'm still laughing at the memes okay. |
Anyway. As the owner of a long string of easy keeper air fern Iberian horses, muzzles are life. Particularly as I try to balance the dietary needs of my Spanish blimps as opposed to my perpetually-ribby-no-matter-how-much-$$$$$-feed-I-pour-into-him geriatric OTTB (although actually he is looking shockingly great right now after the whole EOTRH thing last summer and then as much hiiiiiigh quality 3rd cutting alf I could get him to eat all winter). I don't have great pasture, which is actually fine, since they would legit founder and die on rich grass, but even with careful management, they can get hella fat in the summer without muzzles. I briefly tried one of the typical black webbed muzzles, and IMMEDIATELY got rubs. A friend recommended the Greenguard
, but holy $$$. Enter the Flexible Filly.
Directly copied from their website:
More like wearing a glove than a muzzle!
Flexible Filly slow feed grazing muzzles are a must for many horses but discomfort is not.
Try a natural grazing muzzle. Our research determined horses dislike muzzles because they cannot behave naturally in them. With the historical cage-like or bucket-like muzzles, horses are unable to engage in social activities like wither scratching or other playful interactions resulting in social and emotional health in horse herds.
This Flexible Filly slow feed grazing horse muzzle is unlike the typical cage-like apparatus of the past. We designed this to be softer, lighter, and less behaviorally restrictive. Constructed of a durable and pliable material that radically improves the horses’ feel. It is effective while also being soft on equine teeth and lips. The Flexible Filly Muzzle is well-ventilated and safe, rated to break just before your turnout halter. Additionally, the grazing hole size is adjustable, allowing you to offer the perfect grazing options.
-So light they won’t even know they are wearing it.
-UV Protection for sensitive noses.
-Adjustable Grazing Hole Size.
-Each muzzle comes with 12 zip ties.
-Use with any halter or add our specially designed halter for an easy and perfect fit.
-Durability Guarantee (6-month full replacement warranty).
When I first decided to try it, I figured it was a nice price point compromise between the cheap bulky black nylon ones (which I already knew didn't work for my horses) and the expensive Greenguard (which would quite possibly work but Jesus the price point). I liked the fact that it looked airy and flexible, because the rigidity of some of the other ones concerned me in terms of causing wear on their teeth. In 2019, I was able to find the Flexible Filly at Adams
for a few bucks cheaper than any other retailer at the time -- spoiler alert, the price seems to be back in line with other retailers now. I did look up some old receipts and I paid $57 and now it's $62-68 pretty across the board, so YMMV there. After becoming a convert, now I just watch the Thinline sales. Last November I was able to snag FOUR muzzles for about under $140, so I am hopefully set for a few years! :)
|Cinna wearing it in 2019|
|A few weeks later, still going well|
|Ruby being introduced to it in 2020 and being decidedly NOT IMPRESSED|
I also had to buy a breakaway halter for it -- Thinline makes one specifically for it, but I'm a cheapskate so I went with sourcing my own. I really hate the ones with the full leather strap for a crownpiece, so I picked up a Centaur one with a little breakaway tab. Don't even get me started on those because now I am FOUR FOR FOUR on ordering them based on a stock photo with a normal chin snap and then the MFers show up WITH A SCISSOR SNAP which is literally the dumbest possible snap for a TURNOUT HALTER because when the horse rolls, they can easily unsnap it and then take the halter off. ASK ME HOW I KNOW. I got two new halters this year and thankfully was able to work the scissor snap off and cannibalize some snaps off old nylon halters that don't get used anyway (since I'm now team THT buckle nose biothane halters
for daily use) so hopefully I don't have any further issues with them.
|DECEIVING STOCK PHOTO UGH. |
I cannot express how much I love these muzzles though! They definitely slow down consumption, but without making their face hot and sweaty (another problem I had with the black webbed ones). Ruby definitely came into fall in much better shape weight-wise last year wearing one, and same with Cinna. Aside from one small rub on her nose last year from a zip tie on Ruby's, I haven't had any other issues with rubbing (and I bought a new style of halter this year to try setting it up differently). They've both popped a zip tie here or there rubbing their face, but it was easy to just grab a new one and replace it. My biggest issue was actually them ditching the entire halter (THANKS SCISSOR SNAPS) but putting the fly mask on over the top seemed to nip that in the bud, and this year the halters have normal snaps so fingers crossed! I noticed both girls managed to enlarge the hole a little over time, but not to a point where I was concerned about their consumption. When they get dirty, you can just dunk the whole thing in a bucket and they dry really quickly! Cinna did finally rip her entire muzzle in half at the end of last summer, but the grass was pretty dead by then so I wasn't too fussed -- if I can get two years out of each one, it's definitely worth the investment! Even if I can only get a single year out of it, as long as I can keep restocking in Thinline's 40% off sale :) I have shared a few sales on this style on my personal FB page, and continue to recommend them to anyone who asks me about muzzles. I love them!
|Fitting her new one this year. |
|"Thanks, I hate it"|
|I got Ruby one of those halters with the fleece sections to hopefully prevent any rubs. |
(I mostly just wanted a photo of it all clean and new before she covered it with dirt and grass lol)
|Round two of "Thanks, I hate it" from the bay mare lol. I cut the old zip ties and moved last year's muzzle to a new halter, since it still has some life in it. And that also gives me a spare breakaway halter, if I need it (I also need to find my leather straps, I know I have a pile). |
Price: 5/5 stars (They're pricier than the generic black webbed ones, but so worth it!)
Quality/Durability: 5/5 stars (considering how lightweight and flexible they are, getting a full two summers out of the first one was great)
Color Options: N/A (although wouldn't it be fun if they came in crazy colors that were easy to find in the field? haha)
Again, I was in no way compensated for this review. I received no free products. I bought these with my own money, and will continue to do so.
I really liked them until my Gelding figured out how to eat out the sides of it with longer grass like a weedwacker! Unfortunately the only one I have found works for him is the Greengard. Luckily they seem to last for a while so the price isn't too bad over long term.ReplyDelete
I'm going on three years with Cinna in one and she hasn't figured out that trick, thankfully, haha. Yeah the cool thing about all the new ones being developed and brought to market means there are good options no matter what your needs are! :)Delete
I'm so glad you posted this. Our pasture is the lush, rolling green field of grass that puts weight on hard keeper TBs (without grain!). Over half our herd is muzzled including the horse I'm currently playing auntie to until I find my next one. I ordered the whole shebang (halter and muzzle) but getting it adjusted right just looks like a PITA so it's just been hanging in the barn while she wears one of the more traditional ones. Guess I'll suck it up this weekend and see how it goes for her!ReplyDelete
When I got Cinna's in the mail the first time I avoided trying to fit it for a week or two, it seemed daunting, haha. But the first one I bought came with some little wire ties (sort of like bread bag ties?) so you could adjust it before you committed with the zip ties (you know, since those don't give you a do-over option). After that first half hour or so of fussing with it I figured it out, and setting up Ruby's and then the subsequent ones haven't been too complicated! I don't cut off the spare plastic though, like they recommend, because I figure if I want to move it to a different halter (or even horse) I'd rather keep that option. And having the extra plastic on hasn't bothered them at all :)Delete
They remind me of a jelly fish lolReplyDelete
There's a reason I hashtag the photos on IG #spacejellyfish 😂🦑Delete