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New team:what breed?

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  • #21
    [QUOTE=Tamara in TN;2258963]

    ..I've seen a bit of the "modern" lines and they seem to me "dumb" as well as "hot"....which is never a dandy combo... Tamara in TN
    You mean a bit like Pamela Anderson???

    Comment


    • #22
      [QUOTE]
      Originally posted by Thomas_1 View Post
      Originally posted by Tamara in TN View Post
      You mean a bit like Pamela Anderson???
      well kinda....but it's never an attractive thing in a gelding (in any breed)

      Tamara in TN
      Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
      I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

      Comment


      • #23
        New Team

        Breed really does not matter unless you have a specific goal for them, meaning logging , showing , CDE and such. If you are looking for a "safe" driving horse or pony, "look" for a safe driving pony, not a breed. Often what you have pictured in your head, is not what you end up with. So be open minded.
        Also, find a trainer or friend that is honest, one that will sell you some thing that is right for you & if it's not, won't sell it to you no matter what.
        To many horses & ponies get sold into the wrong homes, only to cause a problem & scare the owner and there family, the pony is messed up for good and sold for meat! It's a waste of time, money and talent.
        Best thing to do is find a trainer at will evaluate you first and then match you with a turnout you will enjoy for life. If you find a good trainer it's not that hard and allot cheaper in the end.
        Best of luck.
        Robert
        Tandem Hill Farm
        www.tandemhillfarm.com

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #24
          What went wrong with the ponies?! Didn't want to share a bad story but you asked..
          Well I knew I had no business buying green horses; but good looks and emotion got the best of me, and wanted a matched pair.....and I thought it was cheaper. WRONG!
          (they're modern style and hot for what I've seen in other Haffies. These horses were never handled, just turned out with the breeder's herd. Bought them at age 2 & 3)
          The older one was trained to ride & ground drive, (4 months)then sent home for some riding miles. I put a year's worth of riding miles on him including foxhunting with the hilltoppers. He took to driving training just fine and was a good horse. (3 months training) He would have been fine to keep to ride or drive single or double.

          The younger (perfectly matched) brother was spooky and bolted from day one. (was drugged at the breeding farm). He had 5 months of gentle socialization and riding training with ground driving, but continued to bolt out from under me ground driving. I never did feel comfortable riding him. Tried to sell out at this point.
          Then I sent him off for more training (3 months driving) and then for driving training as a pair.
          Both horses were driving beautifully for the 3rd trainer, no bolting issues.
          They were driven every day until they were tired, 3-4 hours.
          They came home to my place and were driven daily over Christmas holidays and were doing fine. In January I only had weekends to work the horses and didn't work them long enough until they were tired. Then one day the bolting started again, only this time while hitched. Nothing caused this. Fortunately I was warming up in the fenced pasture. Same issue two weeks later, 2nd full out runaway, and nothing caused it. went from a quiet walk to a dead run. I truly believe the one pony remembered this was how to get out of work with me. Had several knowledgeable horse people tell me this horse was just no good, not fixable;
          just one of those horses that was bad news and certain to cause some injury.
          so I threw in the towel and quit on them after giving three years of trying.

          Didn't want either horse around after the 2nd good scare. They lost my trust.

          Comment


          • #25
            Originally posted by ponydraft View Post
            The younger (perfectly matched) brother was spooky and bolted from day one. (was drugged at the breeding farm). . They lost my trust.
            I say shame on the breeder...if they handled their stock at all they would know that it takes more than matching colors to make a useful horse much less a team....sorry about that for you...all breeders should have a litmus test of some sort for their stock

            Tamara in TN
            Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
            I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

            Comment


            • #26
              While I agree that they are an accident potential I think the younger brother could be broke. He sound like a horse that needs work to be good. I have one now that is a good horse but I can't sell him be cause in the wrong hands he is a time bomb. I would put him as a pair with a buck back strap. It is basically a strap that connects to the halter of the runaway to the single tree of the good horse. When he runs he gets to pull the entire load with his nose. Now this doesn't work with 2 renegades, but it sounds like you only have one nut case. I would not hesitate to work a team like this on the farm. I can always set the plow a little deeper and load the spreader a little higher. (Just don't stand behind me when spreading with a runaway.)

              LF
              Lostfarming in Idaho
              http://i512.photobucket.com/albums/t...etPleasure.jpg

              Comment


              • #27
                I suggest a light breed--simply out of personal experience and preference. As I drive Arabs, I agree with the Morgans, Welshs, QH or any crosses thereof. I have limited experience with drafts breeds, but the one I had was NOT pleasant.

                Ponydraft--there are any number of draft pony crosses out there that are excellent choices. The one thing I found in questions of this type you get a lot of personal choices.

                The best advice has already been given--get plenty of experience in singles before you move up. Best of luck and am glad to hear that you are still wanting to drive after your bad experience. Been there understand that!!!

                Comment


                • #28
                  In tune with LF as usual

                  I agree totally with what LF has said in this thread.

                  I would certainly not have parted with the pair because the older, saner horse was possibly the first half of a good pair. I notice you mention the appearance of the two right at the git go. Having a matched pair is sort of a dream, I think. Far better to have a pair that works together than 2 horse that look alike.

                  Still not clear what your goals are. Is the look or the performance the important thing? Not saying either is right or wrong. Some people own certain horses just because they like the way the horses look.

                  On the other hand if learning to drive a pair is the real goal then the look might not matter so much. In this case smaller is better for starters. There are plenty of small horses including my breed (Caspians) that can give you all the speed and endurance you need to start driving a pair. If you dream of plowing or skidding logs you need something larger but still not over a stout 14 hands.

                  The buck back strap LF mentions may be foriegn territory to some drivers who only use pleasure/marathon vehicles. The buck back works with a work horse set-up with double tree and single trees. Do you have that on the Pioneer training wagon?

                  Ah one question leads to another doesn't it?

                  Good luck
                  Dick

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Well I'm going to urge you again not to make another mistake. The scenario you described is classic novice owner/driver mistakes and its ended badly. Don't do it again.

                    Driving a pair is NOT for a novice driver. Get some miles under your belt with a single horse first. You can always get one to match it later.

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Originally posted by ponydraft View Post
                      Nothing caused this. Fortunately I was warming up in the fenced pasture. Same issue two weeks later, 2nd full out runaway, and nothing caused it.
                      Yes, something did cause it. Many things caused it. They were green-broke babies and by definition they were subject to unpredictable behavior. I truly am sorry you had this frightening experience, but there are so many red flags in your story that I hardly know where to start. But to answer your question about what breed to get next time, I hope you understand that in spite of some of the breed-bashing that's gone on in this thread, the breed of the ponies wasn't to blame for the experience you had. It was a combination of factors including the ponies' green-ness and your own green-ness as a driver (from what I can tell from your post, anyway). You could take any ponies on the planet and put them in this identical situation and get the same identical bad outcome. You took 2 and 3 year olds that were 'unhandled' up to that age and had them trained to drive. By my calculation that makes them 5 and 6 now. The 6 year old *might* be counted on to behave predictably in many situations but the 5 year old sounds like he was a loose cannon from the beginning. He might well be one of those horses that simply isn't suited to driving. There are some like that! But because he fit the description of being a nice match to the other one, he was pressed into service in the pair. I guess you were hoping he would learn from the other one by osmosis. Actually, that does happen to some extent but I think you'll be better off next time if the horses first go well and reliably as singles so that you know firsthand the extent of their education before you put them in a pair. And then I would suggest continuing to drive them as singles from time to time so you can identify and iron out individual problems.

                      Please note that I am in no way suggesting that you try Haflingers again. I love mine and nothing could pry them from my grasp but I have no desire or need to talk people into owning them. Haflingers are beautiful, appealing, and if properly raised and trained, they have ability, attitude and work ethic that can't be beat. But as I've said before on this forum, Haflingers also are their own worst enemy. That's because they do have that trademark docile temperament and this leads people to take shortcuts in their training. Because the horse will tolerate it, people will do things like hook an untrained or under-trained Haflinger to a vehicle and say, "Gee, he did fine the first x number of times and then he lost it." Never mind that the horse had gaps in his education big enough to drive a VW through. The horse will get blamed every time. And the subject horse gets sold down the line and his reputation for being bad goes with him, along with the black eye that is given to the entire breed.

                      Aside from the ever-present problem of incomplete training, I've been around Haflingers long enough to know that there are a lot of unethical sellers in this breed. And I also know that there are a lot of gullible buyers who want something for nothing. It's possible to go to an auction and buy beautiful, friendly but UNTRAINED Haflingers very cheaply. While this might work out OK for a very experienced trainer, the combination of unethical breeders/sellers and the bargain-hunting buyer too often proves the P.T. Barnum maxim that there's a sucker born every minute.

                      I think of my own Haflingers as a treasure that I'm grateful to have discovered at my advancing age and I've brought mine along slowly and carefully from weanlings with the idea that these golden ponies would be with me through my own golden years. So far so good. They are the best thing I've owned in more than four decades of horse ownership and I'm not sure the sun would rise if I didn't see those beautiful faces looking out of their stall windows for me every morning. But that's just me. Haflingers are decidedly not for everyone and I have no stake in trying to persuade people that they are. But I do have a problem with breed-bashing, no matter what the breed is!

                      Comment


                      • #31
                        Originally posted by RidesAHaflinger View Post
                        But I do have a problem with breed-bashing, no matter what the breed is!
                        AMEN!!!! Over the course of 50+ years I've worked with and owned many, many different breeds and there are certainly good and bad in ALL of them! While one can make generalizations about a breed there are always exceptions, and every animal of that breed does not have every trait attributed to it.

                        What I have found consistently, though, is that proper training will overcome any holes in the breeding. I've only run into ONE horse in all of the ones I've handled that was a true rogue. Most problems are man-made or just horses reacting like horses with a human who doesn't understand how to deal with it. If you think a problem is the horse I can guarantee you that there is anothe trainer out there who can prove otherwise

                        Must say the only Haflingers I've seen have been delightful individuals with good work ethics. And you can never beat the combination of good training AND good breeding
                        Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

                        PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
                        Ashemont2@gmail.com

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Originally posted by RidesAHaflinger View Post
                          Yes, something did cause it. Many things caused it. They were green-broke babies and by definition they were subject to unpredictable behavior.
                          Excellent posting and some extremely valid points made in relation to the problem the OP experienced

                          But I do have a problem with breed-bashing, no matter what the breed is
                          It might have been me that started what you consider to be breed bashing in saying that I personally didn't like Haflingers. I've also said before that I don't like Shitlands - yet I have them

                          However got to say that it would be a VERY odd world if everyone liked every breed of horse. The wonderful thing about horses is that (like dogs) they come in every size, colour, shape, type, temperament imaginable and hence its genuinely a case of something to suit every single person as they come similarly blessed with difference.

                          I've put loads of haflinger to harness and there is little doubt they make excellent harness horses - subject to the usual rules for any horse - e.g. properly trained, properly managed, properly driven. Unlike some breeds, they tend towards being "forgiving" of slow response, mistakes and ineptitude. I believe you described it as docility and personally I think this is often their undoing. My personal preference being towards a horse that will not "put up and shut up". I like them to be sharp enough and opinionated enough to take exception to cutting corners etc etc.

                          I believe I was at pains to point out (numerous times) that the breed has got nothing whatsoever to do with what went wrong and neither will a change of breed mitigate the risks or the chances of it happening again.

                          But to be absolutely clear with what I was saying:

                          The breed was not the problem.
                          The fact it was a pair of haflingers is absolutely irrelevent and totally superfluous information

                          I said it before and I'll say it again whilst I don't personally like Haflingers, they're as good as you'll get for a novice driver.

                          Got to say though that its very naive to think that everyone will like every breed of horse. I particularly like T/B's and Arabs and Anglo Arabs but I wouldn't care one iota if someone told me everything they couldn't stand about those breeds and knocked them to bits. I can't stand Norweigan Fjords and Icelandic Ponies and I don't even see the point of Falabellas. So what!

                          One man's meat is another man's poison.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Agreed!

                            Agreed Thomas_1...
                            Well said RidesaHaflinger...
                            Now I adore my shetlands ...have 3 of the little darlings (shitlands ???)....and they are the pony for me! Mine are incredibly smart, willing, strong and have HUGE hearts that just give on and on more like the EveryReady Bunny, non stop, but that is I am sure because of proper training and discipline.
                            I have heard of horror stories too about Shetlands....that they bite and kick and are little monsters. They are very cute and small and many people think they are perfect for small children. They think these ponies don't need training and proper handling like the bigger fellas. NOT! More so its BECAUSE they are cute and small ( and they know it!) that is exactly what they need!
                            IMO ....as with all horses and ponies , NO BREED excluded (especially horses and ponies used for driving) RESPECT and manners taught by proper training make the animal certainly not necessarily the breed!.


                            Just my 2 ( errr..3) shetland cents worth!

                            Carriage Ponies
                            Shetland Ponies are like potato chips, you cannot have just ONE !
                            http://www.flickr.com/photos/36069756@N00/
                            PonyPics Carriage Ponies

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Thomas, I think you misunderstood. I have NO expectation, naive or otherwise, that people will like the same things I do, including the horses I spend my days with. I have what makes me happy at this time in my life and I sincerely hope that others have the same. The thing I took (and take) exception to is characterizing an entire breed of horses as being this way or that. Beyond that, it's just opinions and opinions are like belly buttons: everybody's got one! Drive on!

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                "They were driven every day until they were tired, 3-4 hours."

                                Quite often Lost Farmer and others comment that making a horse work is a good way to iron out some issues, and I couldn't agree more. But this sentence caught my eye and I wondered if you all agree that working every day till tired, 3-4 hours, is a normal training technique for driving?

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by MySparrow View Post
                                  "They were driven every day until they were tired, 3-4 hours."

                                  Quite often Lost Farmer and others comment that making a horse work is a good way to iron out some issues, and I couldn't agree more. But this sentence caught my eye and I wondered if you all agree that working every day till tired, 3-4 hours, is a normal training technique for driving?
                                  Without good driving basics, all you have are tired horses, not TRAINED horses. Young horses do have lots of energy, so being used half a day, not driven into the ground, overloaded with weight or vehicle, in very soft dirt field, for 3-4 hours daily is not usually overworked. Just going along for some milage, in all the gaits, exposing animals to scenery, is not hard work.

                                  However, after horses quit being tired, if you don't have your good basics to depend on, the driver is going to have two VERY FIT, FULL OF ENERGY horses in front, looking for a good time! Won't take much of an excuse to set them off, even after they are almost done with the 3-4 hours of driving.

                                  Kind of like the kids who play on sports teams, they may drag a bit while getting in shape, but once they are fit, they do their warm-ups, play the game, roughhouse with each other, could go play another game easily. Still full of energy and ready for jokes on the Coach. Just bursting with vitality!!

                                  We have quite a few Amish who "train" horses after the winter off. Hitch the big drafters and just work the soft horse into the ground plowing. Even with horse changes at noon on the Teams of 4-5, the work can be so hard, horse is wobbly. None of the horses are fit, stood around all winter. Trained or untrained, horses are all hitched together, driven until the job is done or mealtime comes along. At the end of Spring planting, horses are considered "Broke to plow". Daily exhaustion can take the starch out of most animals. A very tired horse is not learning, just enduring his situation until released at the end of the day. No one learns when that tired, they just get thru it.

                                  Amish got to use horse for work that MUST be done, got PAID for the time as well, he can't lose on that kind of deal! Those who send horse to Amish expect horse will have some bumps and bruises when everything is finished, usually no questions about it.

                                  The now fit, animal goes home, doesn't get hitched except on weekends, may be WAY too much for his driver. Horse "drives" but really knows nothing. Maybe his more experienced Team-mate aids the owner in teaching young horse. Maybe horse is just a single, no friend to help him learn better. We call it Amish broke, works for drafters and driving horses, very common around here. Miles driven on hard roads at steady trot are really hard on a young horse's legs. Immature bone, great distances covered. Amish broke horses have rough looking legs, lots of bumps and knots if used very long.

                                  Some Amish actually know how to train a horse skillfully, few and far between here.

                                  Methods used to train young animals will depend on the trainer horse is handed to. What kind of driving they do, horses they are accostomed to using, where they learned to drive. What knowledge horse gains will vary greatly on return home.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by MySparrow View Post
                                    Quite often Lost Farmer and others comment that making a horse work is a good way to iron out some issues, and I couldn't agree more. But this sentence caught my eye and I wondered if you all agree that working every day till tired, 3-4 hours, is a normal training technique for driving?
                                    Driving a horse till its nackered has nothing to do with training at all. It does what it says on the can. You get tired horses, NOT trained horses.

                                    If they're driven in a half decent way, then there's no doubt that it will get them used to the routines and experience and get them so they are familiar with new things. It also means they're going to be less likely to mess about because they'll be quite pleased when you say "woa"

                                    However if they're driven aimlessly for 4 hours by some heavy handed baffoon as a substitute for good quality training and then given back to a novice driver who never intended to drive them for 4 hours a day, then that's a disaster waiting to happen.

                                    Whenever I train a riding or driving horse I ensure I know what the owner intends to do and if its what I call a weekender hobby horse, then I ensure the owner understands why I won't get it fighting fit.

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      Whoops I think Goodhors and I were typing simultaneously and were reading each others minds!

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Originally posted by Thomas_1 View Post
                                        Driving a horse till its nackered has nothing to do with training at all. It does what it says on the can. You get tired horses, NOT trained horses.

                                        If they're driven in a half decent way, then there's no doubt that it will get them used to the routines and experience and get them so they are familiar with new things. It also means they're going to be less likely to mess about because they'll be quite pleased when you say "woa"

                                        However if they're driven aimlessly for 4 hours by some heavy handed baffoon as a substitute for good quality training and then given back to a novice driver who never intended to drive them for 4 hours a day, then that's a disaster waiting to happen.

                                        Whenever I train a riding or driving horse I ensure I know what the owner intends to do and if its what I call a weekender hobby horse, then I ensure the owner understands why I won't get it fighting fit.
                                        I resemble that heavy handed baffoon. Driving a horse until the legs fall off won't train a horse but it will get a damn site closer than watching it sit in a pasture. I get so tired of all the "training" that is done with a horse. Every one I know wants to train. Heaven help us if a horse actually worked! They also get fed like a feeder hog instead of for work done.

                                        I am a firm believer that if you can get a horse into harness and ready to use you can make something of them. Once I could hook mine I started using them to do chores. After about 3 weeks, my loader tractor lost a wheel bearing. I used the horses to feed cattle twice a day 3 weeks. It wasn't hard work but those horses were used twice a day and that made them a team. They are not well bred and they are not well matched for gait and temperament. But with consistent use they are respectable. My mentor told me that if I made them bleed soap 3 times a week we would make progress. That chore that needed done was the tool to me hooking consistently. My advice to anyone is to quit "training" and start using.
                                        LF
                                        Lostfarming in Idaho
                                        http://i512.photobucket.com/albums/t...etPleasure.jpg

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          And that will be advice I shall file in my special category of "interesting"

                                          Now where is that litter bin

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