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Calling out to all you Andalusian experts out there

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  • Calling out to all you Andalusian experts out there

    I have a 5 yr old Andalusian that I have started working with for a guy doing some basic lower level dressage work. This is the first time I have ever been around or worked with a horse of this breed and I have been amazed by his attitude.
    He is very smart, catches on to things very quickly, is not hot at all but very willing to go with a light leg aid. The owner has me doing some work with him because he wants to sell him. I am not trying in any way to make this about the sale but since I have never been around an Andalusian before I am just curious to know is this a typical temperament and willingness that is common to this breed?
    I have been so surprised at how he is coming along and amazed at his attitude about the work and yet I would not hesitate to let an amateur hack him around the field.
    Having mostly myself (being an eventer mostly) worked with young warmbloods and OTTBs, he has been so wonderful and fun to work with.
    He is suppose to be very well bred as well, but again since I am not familiar with the breed I am just wondering what anyone can tell me about them and his bloodline.
    His sire is Hereje TG.
    Thanks!

  • #2
    I ride an Andalusian and an Oldenburg....both brought up from youngsters. I find both easy (and complicated) for different reasons. My Andalusian is the kind of horse you tell not ask...Oldenburg is just the opposite. I have bred several Andalusians and find this to be true of many of them. You don't have to be demanding just be very clear about what you want and they are a complete pleasure. My girls is so willing and tries so hard that it is a complete joy. I just always have to remember not to take advantage of her good nature and I have to pay attention because she is not a complainer. She is not hot, sensible, and has gobs of talent. The only other thing about my Andalusian is that collection is really easy for her so she'll cheat!

    Comment


    • #3
      The temperament and trainability of the average Andalusian have to be experienced to be believed. They are easily the most pleasant, tractable, intelligent, trainable horses I've ever worked with. But I'm prejudiced; I think that everything but an Andalusian, is just a horse.
      In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
      A life lived by example, done too soon.
      www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

      Comment


      • #4
        I love Iberian horses - Andalusians (now called PRE or Pura Raca Espanole) and Lusitanos. But like anything it depends on the horse, how he was raised and trained and in some cases the individual breeder and bloodlines used.
        Over in Portugal for example, the Viega horses are finely bred can can be hotter than heck. But thats what they want for this breed. The Sommer-Andrades breed horses that have gone on the be excellent jumpers. Some have a tendancy to be taller like 16.2 or even 16.3 with great extensions to rival the Euro WBs. They can be hot also but oh what a pleasure to work with.
        In Spain I like the horses from the Terry breed and some bred by the Domecqs. Excellent dressage horses, willing and agreeable attitudes.
        The absolute best way to discover these horses is to travel to the Golega horse fair in the Fall season each year in Portugal. You'll see everything if you can make it.
        Contacting the USA breed associations will get you info as well.

        I happen to love Euro WBs as well but again it depends on the horse, his training and how he was raised.......

        Comment


        • #5
          I've actually met Hereje, the sire, several times and he's lovely. He' Terri bred, I think, which are good dressage horses. Great minds are standard for Andalusians though there are hotter bloodlines and always exceptions. Mine have all been fun to train and really safe, especially trail riding. In general, they are smarter than many other breeds. I kind of think of it as someone's home, always. The neat thing, was even if there is a big spook, I just give the horse a breather and then get back to work.

          I shied away from WBs for years because of my experiences with the few I'd met, but last year bought a Hanoverian. He has a great mind as well and is solid as a rock temperament wise, so there are fabulous WBs (and other breeds) as well.

          The collected work really does come naturally to most Andis. Just up their fitness levels and they start showing it off. Yes, not the same as training it in, but it shows what horses can do naturally and is great fun. Once you do train it in, it's even more fun. Oh and they remember forever! I had one guy who was off for two years because of an injury but when I got back on, it was all there.

          Comment


          • #6
            I worked with a young andalusion cross mare. She was very willing and intelligent. She was very comfortable to ride. However, she was also very sensitive. Her mouth got hit by the bit once to often and she decided that the best way to prevent that problem was to just not move forward, then the rider would have no reason to pull on the reins. It took a long time to undo this because besides all her wonderful traits, you can add stubborn to the mix

            I did enjoy that mare and if given a chance I would consider owning one.

            Comment


            • #7
              Yes, they do tend to have sensitive mouths, some more so than others. One has to take care in developing contact and encouraging them to seek the bit. They have small mouths, and some I think have weaker jaws, which makes them unfit for heavy contact riders.

              Comment


              • #8
                E, interesting comment about the jaw. Weaker? or *softer?* ?

                After almost 30 years of dabbling in different breeds, 25 of which in dressage, I am coming round to focusing on Iberian & Iberian crosses.

                The other three breeds I adore are Trakehners, Arabs & APHAs.

                What I like about all of these breeds is the sensitivity and work ethic. I love the APHA in the mix because they are pretty darn sensible, and have been really bred to be a family/working horse. The Traks & Arabs give me the exotic fire I crave.

                And the Iberians seem to have all of it. Incredible work ethic for dressage, gaits I can ride, sensitive without being silly. Top it off with an excellent dose of cow sense, and they are just my cuppa tea.

                Sadly, they are far out of my price range. For now, I am concentrating on Aztecas out of my very baroque, cute moving APHA mare. The goal is to someday have my own stallion, to stand alongside my pinto TrakehnerXArab guy.
                InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs
                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Having owned an Iberian and ridden a couple of Andalusians I have to say that they are some of the most intelligent horses I have ever seen. The ones I've ridden tend to be very sensitive, forward, hard workers, but tense/nervous. None of the horses were young so can't say if this was because of training. It would be very easy to have pushed these horses much faster and harder than desired. They also have a playful streak if allowed. Very alert. They can be a little difficult to saddle fit.

                  We always laughing said that all we had to do was read the dressage test to him and he could go in and perform it in 2 mins. flat. Of course, he would have combined movements because he liked to do things like that. Athletic.

                  I have spoken to a few dressage judges about Andalusians and they seem to all say the same things: nervousness in the ring and many have a strong lateral tendency in the walk and canter. I don't know. Just passing along what I've been told.

                  If I could find another Iberian built like my previous horse (a gray who was euthanized because of melanomas) in my price range I'd be a very happy woman.
                  Susan B.
                  http://canterberrymeadows.com/

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pintopiaffe View Post
                    Sadly, they are far out of my price range. For now, I am concentrating on Aztecas out of my very baroque, cute moving APHA mare. The goal is to someday have my own stallion, to stand alongside my pinto TrakehnerXArab guy.
                    You and I should talk LOL ... this is my current plan too!
                    If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.
                    ~ Maya Angelou

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ESG View Post
                      The temperament and trainability of the average Andalusian have to be experienced to be believed. They are easily the most pleasant, tractable, intelligent, trainable horses I've ever worked with. But I'm prejudiced; I think that everything but an Andalusian, is just a horse.
                      this.

                      I work with my friends horses. The first 3 year old I broke for her we had entered in a show (3 months broke) and she qualified for nationals in the Dressage u/s class.

                      They are wonderful creatures.
                      http://kaboomeventing.com/
                      http://kaboomeventing.blogspot.com/
                      Horses are amazing athletes and make no mistake -- they are the stars of the show!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        They can be a little difficult to saddle fit.
                        Aye yie yie yie yie....

                        Honestly, I think this is the BAROQUE type vs. the breed.

                        Baroques tend to have a short, wide (WIDE) flat back, AND a wither, and a scapular that goes on for days. This is what makes for a nice ride.

                        My ArabX baroques are just as bad as the Iberians. It's the double back WITH withers that is the biggest issue, IMO.

                        There are saddles for mutton withers and XW wide-flat backs. There are saddles for *withers* and WIDE backs. The XW-Flat-WITH WITHERS seems to be the glass slipper.

                        I am acutally *deliberately* trying to introduce some less-hard-to-fit equines into my breeding program. I realized that by breeding for the traits I want--smooth gaits, great-competitive-movement, uphill balance and baroque build... I am acutally breeding the saddlefit nightmare. (pun acknowledged, not intended!)

                        I am HOPING to at least be breeding a horse Duetts will fit.
                        InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                        Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hi yas, I am new to the breed too, I have had my 5 year old Andy gelding for a bit over 3 months. WHen he first arrived at the barn he was hell on wheels, an inconsolable nervous wreck, pacing and whinnying all the time... kinda neurotic really. And this went on for weeks. Not sure, but it may have to do with his only other, previous training experience when he was sent away for a month by original owner a few years previous. Aside from that he was mostly un-handled and untrained. A number of Iberian owners told me that they can get very upset about being relocated, certain individuals can. They are such sensitive horses.

                          My trainer has been very gentle but firm and consitant with him, and once he started to relax and trust us he began to show a very quick mind for learning. Then this formerly nervous Nel just got 'backed' the first time yesterday and today... He was as affable as could be and just had this happy goofy face the whole time, as if it were a big love-fest, with the trainer standing in front holding the line and cooing "good boy" and the guy she was having back him, sitting up top and patting him... He was soaking it up like a big puppy dog. He actually likes to be sat on, what a hoot.

                          I am glad to read so many cool things about the breed, at first I was like: What. Have. I. Done. And my trainer also was like: YES!! WHat. Have. You. Done?? The word I got on the Iberian forum that I hang out on is that even the tough nuts to crack eventually become the trainer's favorite even if in the beginning the reverse was true. They are just such quick learners and like to please. And oh, such athletes. Oh one more thing, no matter how wound up my guy was in the beginning, so matter how explosive seeming, he would never really ever 'do' anything... they are oddly trustworthy and seem to know where you are and don't want to smack into you. And oddly self-contained even when very anxious. Even at his most nervous or 'high', you couldn't even make him run his ya yas off in the areana without bringing in another horse to get him going, just so self-contained and if they 'spook' they do it in place while barely moving an inch from where they were standing. Very light to handle, if they pull back on your lead rope like they are about to rip your arm off, they hit the end and then just float around like a balloon, no weight really, very light. Intriguing beasties and you could just look at them move forever...

                          PS My PAssier Grand Gilbert, Medium wide (I think) fits him great and he is definitely the more short-backed baroque shape.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            baroques rule. I've ridden the 6 lipp bloodlines, as well as a few andys, and a lusitano and collectively they ride like potatoes. Now that sounds bad until you experience it. I'm not saying they ride like a sack of potatoes, just that they are built potatoish (same shape) and don't feel serpenty like a TB. While we're at it i think friesians ride like train cars (oblong), and WB's mostly ride like dumbells with heavy weight in front and hind.

                            I loff baroques; just wish they came a tad bigger so i didn't look like an eegit on them.
                            www.destinationconsensusequus.com
                            chaque pas est fait ensemble

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Lipizaners (sp?) are very different from andalusians which, depending on bloodlines are different from lusitanos.

                              Let's be clear on the word baroque because it has been used incorrectly a few times here. A baroque breed is one that was commonly used and popular in the baroque period of history which was something like 1600-1750. It doesn't really refer to type although I guess you could group all of the baroque horses together and call it a type but since there is a big difference, to me anyway, between the baroque breeds it seems a little hard to generalize.

                              I don't know very much about andalusians or lipizaners or fresiens. I've met them and I've seen a bunch on youtube but that's it. What I know is the lusitano. Someone on-line said you take the andalusian to church and the lusitano to work. ^_^

                              Most of the andalusians I've seen have more knee action and little back movement. Probably very smooth--at least they looked that way. But i've seen others that I would have sworn were lusitanos. The breeds were intermixed not too long ago so I think that's why.

                              I can tell you that the lusitano is a hot, sensitive creature and shouldn't be trained or treated like a WB, although people do these days--especially with the way they're being bred in Brazil. But I know of ones that have been ruined this way so I am not in favor of it.

                              It doesn't mean you must ride klasical dressage with a cape, hat and feather. It just means certain exercises are better for them and also how you develop them as a horse. I see the WBs mostly starting with the lengthened gaits and pushing them to get those big, floaty gaits. I wouldn't do that with a lusitano or you'll get a horse rushing around on its forehand and very very tight in the back. Just as an example.

                              But as 2greyhorses has found out, some of them can be very hot. I've met ones that were spooky and nervous--usually made much worse by a timid owner. I've met some pretty dangerous ones, too. So I wouldn't tell someone to just go blindly chose a lusitano and expect it to automatically have a good temperament etc. You could say that with any horse though.

                              I agree with ESG. Mine has an amazing work ethic and desire to please. You have to be fair with him. If you get flustered or if you try to bully him he'll shut down and tune you out or get even more upset (ask me how I know LOL). He's also very intelligent. He's always had a good head on his shoulders but I've worked hard to make sure he's exposed to a lot of things and knows how to react when he's scare of something.

                              Personally, I never want to own another breed of horse.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Shiaway View Post
                                Lipizaners (sp?) are very different from andalusians which, depending on bloodlines are different from lusitanos.

                                Let's be clear on the word baroque because it has been used incorrectly a few times here. A baroque breed is one that was commonly used and popular in the baroque period of history which was something like 1600-1750. It doesn't really refer to type although I guess you could group all of the baroque horses together and call it a type but since there is a big difference, to me anyway, between the baroque breeds it seems a little hard to generalize.

                                I don't know very much about andalusians or lipizaners or fresiens. I've met them and I've seen a bunch on youtube but that's it. What I know is the lusitano. Someone on-line said you take the andalusian to church and the lusitano to work. ^_^

                                Most of the andalusians I've seen have more knee action and little back movement. Probably very smooth--at least they looked that way. But i've seen others that I would have sworn were lusitanos. The breeds were intermixed not too long ago so I think that's why.

                                I can tell you that the lusitano is a hot, sensitive creature and shouldn't be trained or treated like a WB, although people do these days--especially with the way they're being bred in Brazil. But I know of ones that have been ruined this way so I am not in favor of it.

                                It doesn't mean you must ride klasical dressage with a cape, hat and feather. It just means certain exercises are better for them and also how you develop them as a horse. I see the WBs mostly starting with the lengthened gaits and pushing them to get those big, floaty gaits. I wouldn't do that with a lusitano or you'll get a horse rushing around on its forehand and very very tight in the back. Just as an example.

                                But as 2greyhorses has found out, some of them can be very hot. I've met ones that were spooky and nervous--usually made much worse by a timid owner. I've met some pretty dangerous ones, too. So I wouldn't tell someone to just go blindly chose a lusitano and expect it to automatically have a good temperament etc. You could say that with any horse though.

                                I agree with ESG. Mine has an amazing work ethic and desire to please. You have to be fair with him. If you get flustered or if you try to bully him he'll shut down and tune you out or get even more upset (ask me how I know LOL). He's also very intelligent. He's always had a good head on his shoulders but I've worked hard to make sure he's exposed to a lot of things and knows how to react when he's scare of something.

                                Personally, I never want to own another breed of horse.
                                The Andy I rode had the knee action and the smooth back. He actually had less movement in his back at the trot than at the walk.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Just wanted to mention that I heard from maybe 9 or 10 people on a different forum who also had bought an Andy or Lusitano that was none to happy to be uprooted/relocated. I have explored this angle pretty extensively because my new horse was just driving us all bonkers, so I asked about it a lot on the Iberian forum.

                                  9 out of 10 of these folks reported that the horse did settle down, varying degrees of time required, it could be a couple months, it could be a whole year. Some were tougher to bring around than others, but with dedication on the new owner's part, it happened in time and THEN they had the horse of their dreams, and that is what appears to be happening in my case too, at least so far so good. Just to set the record straight and not inadvertently give Andys a bad rap. it would seem my guy will be fine and not dangerous or permanently nervous, although we are not out of the woods yet, it is just looking really good at this stage. Oh, I agree about a timid owner making things worse, and babying a nervous Iberian does not help in the least. They require firmness and confidence. Anyway... Once my horse started showing us calm and content intstead of freaked out and inconsolable, the progress we started to make in his lessons was quite remarkable, and that is how every lesson seems to be now.. the learning curve is exceptional. He is now showing a delightfully calm, content and people-loving disposition and it has only been 3 months with one and a half months training, and in just that time it's like from night to day... So I am very optmistic whereas just a month ago I was having to seriously consider selling him. Also keep in mind my guy was barely trained or handled, not much was done with him for 5 years. It does make a difference, not insurmountable though.

                                  There was only one Andy whose owner I heard from who never came around... sad story, after 10 years of doing every last alternative healing treatment she could think of, massage, flower remedies, amazing calming diet, as well as trying different trainers, the horse is still as mistrustful and on edge as day one. She can ride him and he is a pleasure to ride, heck~ he's a highly trained Andy, need we say more... but he is extremely mistrustful and not at all loving or friendly. Turns out he was used as a performance stallion in a traveling show and the owner is sure that some terrible things must have happened to him. There was one other owner whose horse took a few YEARS to begin to settle, he'd be sort of OK on familiar turf but a nut once in new surroundings, like, seriously freaky. Again she tried everything in the book... he came to her very unhealthy, sort of stunted and underweight so I don't know if that figures in, but now he healthy and he is really coming around in every way and she is really happy she didn't sell him... But yes, some of them can be very inconsolable when relocated... they are also supposed to be especially loyal horses who form a very deep bond with their person, so that might also figure in as to why it is so hard on them being sold and moved to a different home. On one of my favorite Andy (breeder) websites, this one that has loads and loads of info about them, advice is given that you can expect your Andy to be depressed for sometime after they are moved if they had former owners that they were bonded with. Very loyal horses. I know my horse loved his former owner, you could see it plain as day. Poor guy, must have been really hard for him to make that shift.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    normally it works that way!

                                    warmbloods rideability between 0 to 8

                                    PRE/PSL rideability between 8 and 10

                                    10 being the "best"
                                    "The Lusitano horse is an artistic creation; bore from the sensitivity of those who imagined and created him, who thrived to make the ideal dream horse a perfect reality. "
                                    www.keberica.com/english

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I have 2 PRE Andalusian stallions in training - the first one has been with me for 6 years now. He came as a green youngster who is now competing/winning at GP - to say I am attached to him would be an understatement. His rideability ( as mentioned by others on this thread) is nothing short of incredible - one friend said, that this stallion would probably lay down and roll over, if I'd ask him to.

                                      http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pi...00000986325354

                                      The second one, a green 3 year old just came into my barn July 1st - within 1 week he was W/T off the lunge - no spooking, no bucking, just happy to go to work. Time will tell, if he will be as good as the older one, but he certainly appears to have to same positive attitude towards pleasing his rider.
                                      Perfection is not attainable, but when we chase perfection, we can catch excellence - Vince Lombardi

                                      www.thehomestedt.com

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        2greyhorses,

                                        I imagine many horses coming from the breeders/moving from their first home is difficult.

                                        But after that I have found my guy can settle in a new place like he's been there is whole life within 10 minutes. Ok when we made the 17 hour trip down to NC it took him maybe one evening ^_^. But I've driven 3 hours, turned him out on a strange paddock and the first thing he does is look for food.

                                        He's exceptionally stoic. Too much sometimes! We've been attacked by yellow jackets on trails and he acts like it's just a nasty fly biting him. He's also come back from a trail with an inch thick twig stuck up his hind boot and never took a funny step. I got ride of those boots after that day.

                                        But I imagine getting uprooted from the place one is born/raised would be a lot harder. I don't know because I didn't import mine.

                                        It did take him a long time to get used to riding outside the indoor though. But he was never bad about it, just very tense. It felt like riding a stick of TNT ready to go off at any second but he never did. I just got him out there as much as I could and now he's great on the trail.

                                        Of course I should mention my guy is not very loyal. He's just like a dog. He loves whoever hands out the food. Since I don't give him many treats by hand, this usually means I'm at the bottom of the list. He loves my trainer who dispenses sugar cubes during lessons like they're going out of style. But don't be fooled, if she stopped giving him sugar he'd move on to the next person who handed out food.

                                        He really is very food motivated. I'm sure that when he was a stud if you put a mare in heat and a bucket of grain in front of him he'd go for the bucket of grain LOL I've even seen him spooking at something and then stop, grab a bite of hay, then continue spooking. He'd never have made it in the wild. He'd stop while being chased by a mountain lion to grab a bite of grass.... ha ha

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