Western Saddle Guide

Western Saddle Guide > Saddle Accessories > Breast Collar

Breast Collar

The breast collar is a combination of straps that go around the front of the horse and attach to the saddle. Its purpose is to prevent the saddle from slipping backwards. Collars are an important accessory for activities that include climbing steep terrain and fast starts such as roping and speed competition. A breast collar will also allow you to ride with a little looser cinch and they will also help keep a saddle in position on a very round withered horse.

Check out the wide selection of leather and nylon breast collars at our Tack Shop, State Line Tack and HorseSaddleShop.

breast collar
For less extreme, flat land riding, a breast collar is usually not necessary. However, they are very popular as they give a very nice finished look to a saddled horse. As a result, collars have become quite ornamental with loads of variety, styles, and decoration including elaborate tooling, braiding and conchos. The well-dressed horse will have a collar that matches the style, coloring, and decoration of the saddle.

Leather is the traditional material, but they're now also available in a wide variety of materials including mohair, cotton, nylon, fleece, and neoprene.

The breast collar consists of the breast plate, two rig straps and a center tie-down strap. The straps vary in width but are typically between 1 and 4 inches wide. The rig straps are anchored at each side of the saddle to either small dee rings or slots on the front of the skirts or to the front rigging rings. The tie-down strap goes from the center of the breast plate down and between the horse’s legs and connects to a small dee ring on the center strip of the front cinch.

breast collar Breast collars are generally one-size-fits all. Sizing is done through adjustment of the straps. A properly adjusted collar will have the rig straps lying above the points of the shoulder and will allow you to slide your hand between the straps and the horse.

Many riders have a tendency to have their collars too loose which results in the saddle having to slip quite a ways back before the collar engages. A too tight breast collar or one that lies below the points of the shoulder will restrict your horses movement and comfort.

The center tie strap should be loose enough to allow you to put your fist between it and the horse, but not so loose that the horse could catch a foot in it.



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