What Do I Need to Consider When Choosing a Halter?

Someone recently asked me for a halter they could snap to the bit of their mule. Now, there’s something important I want to address here. When you’re building a proper foundation with your animal, you want them to be very comfortable and for their bit to be properly balanced in their mouth.

Most folks don’t consider the halter/bit combination an issue initially because a mule will appear to be doing just fine with it at the start. My response to that is, “he might be doing fine today, but what about a year from now when he’s starting to learn a bunch of bad habits?” You’ve got to think ahead and consider what future problems will develop when using any bit.

The downside of the halter/bit combination is that it does not balance the bit correctly because of the snaps hanging on the bridle. I do not suggest you use halter bridles. It won’t balance the bridle correctly and it won’t balance the bit correctly. I always suggest a separate halter and a separate bridle.

What About Blinders?

Now you might also be wondering about blinders. Personally, I do not use blinders at all with my mules because when you start colts out for six months of training, they need to see a full 360° all the way around, and blinders will just focus them straight ahead. But if your animals are showing that they HAVE to have blinders, I do have a couple of simple recommendations for you: avoid clip-in bridles and avoid halter/bridle combinations. You do not want these. Again, they do not balance the bit correctly, your mule will be uncomfortable, and they’ll want to run through the bit.

Steve’s Recommendation

Overall, my recommendation to you is to use a rope halter and a separate bridle. Put the comfort of your animal first; get the correct bit and bridle – your mule will learn good habits and form a proper foundation for you.