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Dr. Cook (#22094)

Dr. Cook® Bitless Western Headstall

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As riders and online shoppers, we know it can be tough to buy a new bridle or pair of boots without trying them on. That's why we moved the fitting room to your living room (or barn)! From breeches to blankets, if you or your horse can try it on, you can return it, free! Just request a return with a FREE SmartPak return label from your Order History within 60 days of the purchase date. And of course, please make sure the item is in like-new condition with original packaging (we said 'fitting room', not 'war room'!).

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Why We Love This



The Dr. Cook® Bitless Western Headstall features an independent rein straps and a smooth, comfortable noseband that provides a clear, pain-free signal and instant release. Although The Bitless Bridle is indisputably a bitless bridle it bears no other resemblance to the pre-existing and traditional bitless bridles. The Dr. Cook Bitless Western Headstall works on an entirely new and different concept compared with all previous bridles. The Bitless Bridle  provides full service communication, whereas the traditional bitless bridles have limitations in their ability to provide for rider/horse communication. 

 Dr Cook's Bitless Western Leather Reins sold separately.

Favorite Features

  • Hand crafted out of quality US bridle leather. (Wickett & Craig of America).
  • Crafted by some of USA's finest American leather workers.
  • Features western looking buckles and have silver star removable Conchos at the browband.


Key Specifications
  • Material: Leather
  • Closure Style: Buckle
  • Style: Headstall
  • Reins Included: No
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of customers would recommend this product to a friend!
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The reviews provided on this website represent the experience of the individual posting the review. We do not adopt, edit, or endorse any of the submissions posted within the reviews section. Rather, the reviews are part of an online community of animal owners that desire to share their particular experience with other individuals. These reviews are not a substitute for discussing the health of your animal with a veterinarian.

SmartPak customers are some of the most conscientious animal owners around. We encourage you to share your experience with the products we sell to help fellow customers to make informed choices for their animals. We do not edit these reviews in any way - they are direct customer-to-customer communication. We do monitor reviews for positive and negative feedback, and use this feedback to improve our selection as well as sharing feedback with product manufacturers to help them improve their products. Please note that we recommend consulting your vet with serious health issues.

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(Maintenance Dose = )
Ingredient Per Serving Per Pound


Available in sizes Horse (Medium), Oversize (Large)
What Customers Say:
sizing chart


Material Leather
Closure Style Buckle
Style Headstall
Noseband Width 1/2"
Browband Width 1/2"
Reins Included No
Padding Yes
Customizable No
Special Features Made in the USA. Silver Star Removable Conchos

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    Dr. Cook® Bitless Western Headstall is rated 4.5 out of 5 by 33.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great fit Was using a bosal but my horse has a big head so it wasn't perfect for him. Since these come in different sizes he now has something bitless that fits perfect.
    Date published: 2017-10-17
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Totally amazing! My mustang loves it, responds well and it looks good. Just be careful to dry it if you get it wet if you are getting the leather one
    Date published: 2017-09-25
    Rated 2 out of 5 by from Costly, not impressed with the craftsmanship I bought two bridles and feel they are WAY over priced to not come with reins! I have also been dealing with UPS & Smartpak as they did not ship our items to the correct address & then in fixing the problem made it more complicated.
    Date published: 2017-08-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from In Love! I just bought this a couple weeks ago and my horse and I love it! Not only does it look beautiful on him he responds to it amazingly. I am extremely happy with it!
    Date published: 2017-05-05
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Love this alternative to a bit! This bridle was bought for my belgian mule as a alternative to using a bit . It provides the pressure needed for breaking at the pole as well as flexing side to side.
    Date published: 2017-04-06
    Rated 3 out of 5 by from Well made but horse won't have it I can't give this an honest review. I purchased this for my daughter's horse and have tried it a few times and he simply does not like it. I thought he would take to it quickly since he is so light in his mouth. He turns well (I attribute this to years of barrel racing and pole bending though) but any pulling back to stop or back up he flips his head up. I may continue to acclimate him slowly to this bridle and can update my review at that time. Overall though the product is well made and exactly as described. Was really hoping for a quick transition to this way of riding.
    Date published: 2017-04-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good quality leather I have a rescue that fought the bit, any bit even though I would consider myself " light handed". I hesitated buying this but, am glad I did. She is very responsive to it and has relaxed. It is well made and the instructions help you get a proper fit.
    Date published: 2017-04-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS BRIDLE This bridle is great material, fits my horse, and works just as good as a bit with no head pulling from my horse! It's also beautiful on her. I have had 3 other horse owners come to your site just to buy this bridle!
    Date published: 2017-02-25
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Better than expected I bought this for my older Quarter Horse mare. She's a fully trained Western Pleasure horse with no outstanding vices or bad behaviors that need correction. She can sometimes get heacy in the bit, and when I have to do a lot of flexing and such to get her loosened up I feel awfully bad just tugging on her mouth constantly. This bridle is a great solution. I get just as good poll flexion in this bridle, and she seems less fidgety. This bridle only falls short of 5 stars for me because it's a bit difficult to get a deep bend to either side, and I notice she tends to want to drop her shoulders a bit more in this bridle. I should say however, we have done a total of 3 rides in this bridle, so I think some of the difficulty will be resolved shortly with some pretty straightforward re-training. Overall, this bridle is a great purchase, and I think every horse should be given a chance to go bitless.
    Date published: 2016-12-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unbelievable!! I recently bought a mule that was previously trained for riding and packing and I could tell from the first time I rode her that she has a sensitive mouth and/or had figured out how to avoid the bit instructions by going tongue over bit. I tried a loose ring snaffle and d-ring snaffle before I started looking into the bitless bridles and she constantly gaped and shook her head and was quite difficult to ride. I ordered Dr Cooks bridle and my mule did great the first time out! I was skeptical trying it for the first time because my mule is pretty head strong and I was worried I wouldn't have enough control but it has been even better than I could have imagined! This bridle absolutely works as advertised!! It took her a few times out to really be comfortable and get the hang of it but it is really amazing the difference this bridle has made, I may never use a bit again on any horse or mule!
    Date published: 2016-09-16
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nice leather I really wanted a leather Dr Cooks, I had the Beta. The leather is not stiff, it's nice and pliable.
    Date published: 2016-05-04
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Decent quality. I was expecting a little better leather quality, this doesn't take conditioner well and had a weird feel - it's nothing like English leather, harness leather or Herman Oak. The brow band was too small for my small headed 15'1 hand Quarter Horse mare so, I swaped it out from my snaffle bridle set up and it is much prettier now too. My horse responded well to it the first time using it. I like it much better than riding in a ridgid nose piece sidepull (which seemed too severe) or my rope halter. I got this primarily for my daughter (7yrs) to not hurt my mare's mouth and to trail ride - as I do let my horse eat as we go.
    Date published: 2016-05-02
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent purchase I have a 16.1 OTTB that came directly from the track. This bridle complemented the Warwick Schiller training methods seamlessly. He's used in 3-day eventing and also with this bridle specifically for trail riding western. While I use latigo leather split reins, it could easily be used in English and he flexes at the poll easily. The color in the photo for the Western headstall is very accurate. Medium is the perfect size for my very typical OTTB's head. I am considering purchasing another one to match my English saddle. It really does have enough control for cross-country.
    Date published: 2016-04-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great bridle! I have a very sensitive Andalusian gelding that I have owned for 6 years. I have tried many different bits but none have really made him happy. Decided to give this bridle a try. He is finally relaxed and stays round and on contact. He is even building a better top line and neck! Wish I had tried it sooner. Very pleased!
    Date published: 2016-04-19
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from GREAT Bridle! I bought this bridle about 10 years ago, only the neoprine version, and started my young colt out on it. Worked TERRIFIC. Now I just bought a 12 year old QH and thought I'd use one on him too.....this time I went with the leather and glad I did. Really nice soft leather. No reason to ever put a bit in your horse's mouth again. They will LOVE you for it.
    Date published: 2016-01-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Works great! I bought this Bitless Headstall a month ago and my TW horse is much happier.
    Date published: 2015-11-20
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fits perfectly! I bought this for my TWH. The fit is amazing and she does so well with this bridle. She doesn't fight me, easily turns with reins. Highly recommend this product. A very happy Horse and horse owner!
    Date published: 2015-11-11
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Transformed my horse My 10 yr-old paint had become un-rideable over the last few years; simply refusing to move with a bit in his mouth. It was obvious there was pain by the way he held his mouth open but the vet couldn't find nothing. I spent more on this bridle than any other I've ever purchased, but it was worth it. I had one of my students take him for a test ride and within the hour she had him in all 3 gaits, even repeatedly took him over jumps! I'd like to head toward using it for all of my 12 horses.. but it will have to wait for a bit..( pun intended)!
    Date published: 2015-10-30
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! I bought this about 2 months ago. My TW loves it and responds better. Both of us are happier without a bit in her mouth.
    Date published: 2015-10-05
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this bridle!!! Absolutely love his bridle. Made the decision about a month ago to go bitless with my Quarter horse gelding. No mouth issues at hand, just for his own comfort. I tried a few other types and was not impressed. My cousin let me borrow her Dr Cook bitless bridle for a week. I was instantly impressed. He rides just as nice as before , if not better and definitely seems more relaxed . I just ordered my own. Beyond thrilled with this product. We are done with bits! :)
    Date published: 2015-06-06
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from great features bought this for a chestnut quarter horse, and it looks awesome,! Got many compliments. the leather is good quality and seems to feel good to the horse. It also fits my Fjord horse. I bought a large, and it is well adjustable to fit both.
    Date published: 2015-02-04
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from I bought this a month ago after using traditional side-pulls with my mare for years, she began to throw her head down and bare her teeth showing discomfort during lessons. I decided to try Dr Cooks to help disperse the pressure she feels, and so far she has responded very well to it. The transition was easy for her since it is similar enough to the side-pull, and she hasn't shown signs of discomfort during lessons yet. I am going to try it on my other mare soon who is in a snaffle bit, to try and get her bit less as well. The quality is good, and I use my leather reins with it and it matches just fine.
    Date published: 2014-07-02
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