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Gray OTTBs ....

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  • #61
    I have wondered the same thing. Since I have know THREE greys who died from melanoma (oh and I'm not a grooming nazi), I don't even look at them. Yes, that dark dapply phase is pretty, but they will all eventually turn white or near white as time goes by, so I'm not sure -- well, wait, yes, I am, people are weird.
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    • #62
      This is random and has no scientific bearing, just my observation, but interesting nonetheless....

      Growing up we had only grey horses. One polish arab mare, one morab gelding, and one quarter horse. Zero developed melanomas. However, I've seen plenty of melanomas, but it has always been on TBs. Granted, TBs were very common - meaning, it's not like I saw a lot of grey pasos to compare with - but I just thought that was interesting. I've known more grey arabs and grey TBs than any other grey horses and, hands down, the TBs were the ones with the melanomas.

      Anyone have any thoughts on this?
      Final Furlong Racehorse Retirement

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      • #63
        Originally posted by Fractious Fox View Post
        This is random and has no scientific bearing, just my observation, but interesting nonetheless....

        Growing up we had only grey horses. One polish arab mare, one morab gelding, and one quarter horse. Zero developed melanomas. However, I've seen plenty of melanomas, but it has always been on TBs. Granted, TBs were very common - meaning, it's not like I saw a lot of grey pasos to compare with - but I just thought that was interesting. I've known more grey arabs and grey TBs than any other grey horses and, hands down, the TBs were the ones with the melanomas.

        Anyone have any thoughts on this?
        That would be interesting if there was any correlation. Perhaps there is a common ancestor at work if that is true?
        "One reason why horses are happy is because they are not trying to impress other horses."
        "Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear, or a fool from any direction"

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        • #64
          Originally posted by Fractious Fox View Post
          This is random and has no scientific bearing, just my observation, but interesting nonetheless....

          Growing up we had only grey horses. One polish arab mare, one morab gelding, and one quarter horse. Zero developed melanomas. However, I've seen plenty of melanomas, but it has always been on TBs. Granted, TBs were very common - meaning, it's not like I saw a lot of grey pasos to compare with - but I just thought that was interesting. I've known more grey arabs and grey TBs than any other grey horses and, hands down, the TBs were the ones with the melanomas.

          Anyone have any thoughts on this?

          Of the several that I've known...only one was a TB. I've know ponies, WB, and mutts who had them. I think the chestnut based v. black based is probably a stronger connection as I've known a Chestnut who had melanomas.
          ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

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          • #65
            Originally posted by chism View Post
            Not to mention the melanoma issue with grays...who wants to deal with that?
            I had a gray OTTB who lived to be 28, competed into his 20s, became a therapy horse. And yeah, he eventually developed a melanoma, but at an advanced age.

            The FUGLY fleabitten gray pony who taught me to jump (and to hold reins short while mounting to avoid ass-bites) lived to be somewhere far north of 40-- too mean to die.

            I know that statistic is not the plural of anecdote, but it's not like all grays or even most succumb.

            Just like all appaloosas don't go blind, all mares aren't bitchy, etc.

            I have one and I have to admit I have the gray horse bug, entirely because of that fine guy way back when -- but don't mean to be defensive at all. That being said, I haven't bought a gray since I was 15, have loved the bays and chestnuts in my life, and wouldn't have bought my horse if I didn't love everything else about her (you can't ride the big ears, either, but boy are they charming).

            Shopping by color is ill advised, particularly if you are looking for a made horse. But with so many high-quality young ex-racehorses out there, if you have a color preference you can indulge it. FWIW I didn't pay a color premium for my horse. If I had, I'd want a refund because she does her best to turn herself dun every time she's turned out. In fact, I get so tired of scrubbing the mud off I am considering just taking a sharpie and giving her a dorsal stripe.
            Shut up! You look fine! --Judybigredpony
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            • #66
              Gr8, how is Brazil doing? You should start a blog!

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              • #67
                Originally posted by magicteetango View Post
                Gr8, how is Brazil doing? You should start a blog!
                She is the super-coolest girl ever. Unfortunately for me (not for her) I went from one part-time day job to a full-time job AND teaching a college course, so my big plans to ride her a lot have been put on the back burner and I put her in full training. My trainer went to Florida, so Ms. B got an all-expenses paid (by me ) trip down there. She is doing her job well and likes xc very much.

                She is doing her first HT the first weekend in March and I am heading down there to groom, cheer, and take pix, which I will post.
                Shut up! You look fine! --Judybigredpony
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                • #68
                  Originally posted by gr8fulrider View Post
                  I know that statistic is not the plural of anecdote, but it's not like all grays or even most succumb.

                  Just like all appaloosas don't go blind, all mares aren't bitchy, etc.
                  Actually, the lifetime risk of grays developing melanomas IS extremely high. The question is often not if, but when, and whether something else gets them first; this is especially true for horses that are black-based and homozygous for Gr. Unfortunately, the genetic change that causes coat graying is the exact same genetic change that causes the melanomas.

                  And actually, all appaloosas homozygous for the Lp "leopard pattern" gene DO have night blindness, and all carriers are at increased risk of chronic recurrent uveitis (which often results in "moon blindness," even when treated). This is again, a pleiotropic effect of the gene that causes the change in the coat color. Likewise, the Silver dilution results in a number of ocular anomalies.

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                  • #69
                    Originally posted by Fractious Fox View Post
                    This is random and has no scientific bearing, just my observation, but interesting nonetheless....

                    Growing up we had only grey horses. One polish arab mare, one morab gelding, and one quarter horse. Zero developed melanomas. However, I've seen plenty of melanomas, but it has always been on TBs. Granted, TBs were very common - meaning, it's not like I saw a lot of grey pasos to compare with - but I just thought that was interesting. I've known more grey arabs and grey TBs than any other grey horses and, hands down, the TBs were the ones with the melanomas.

                    Anyone have any thoughts on this?
                    I've seen them mostly on Arabs. Actually, I can't think of one grey Arab over the age of 15 that didn't have melanomas.

                    What drives me nuts about grey horses - every little cut, scratch or ding turns black, so they have this very obvious black "scar" after a wound has healed. If you have one that goes out with other horses and gets their fair share of wounds, then they look ridiculous with all of the black marks on them.

                    Just my observation. Also agree with the manure stains, yellow tail syndrome (yuck), and melanoma issue.

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                    • #70
                      Interesting as I have always been in the no grey camp as I hate cleaning them Grey is so common in the Irish, I can't see anyone paying extra. My fields are filled with plain bay, only a couple with chrome
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                      • #71
                        I call myself a gray magnet. Seems I can't go very long without owning one or having one in my barn. All of mine have been TB's, except for one WB/TB, none have ever had any signs of melanoma (thank goodness!)

                        As far as the market, I will agree that there is much more action on a pretty, well put together gray horse than your average bay. I have a client that is looking for just that, and had one she loved but he was pulled off the market. Everytime I send her info on NICE horses I get the same response, they are holding out for another gray horse.

                        One is landing in my barn next month, but I may keep him for myself!

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                        • #72
                          Random melanoma question..... I just got a Grey OTTB'S, my first grey, though Ive always wanted one! I live in TX where the sun is brutal. I put coat spray with SPF 8 on him every day to potentially help with any future melanomas. Any thought on if this is helpful. I figure it can't hurt, but not sure if melanomas are even sun Related in horses!

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                          • #73
                            As a seller of horses, dappled greys sell much faster/are easier to sell.

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                            • #74
                              While I love a dark dappled gray, they usually lighten up and lose that pretty color as they age, then you just have a white horse that you have to worry about sunburn, cancer and keeping clean.

                              personally I'm a sucker for a dark bay with four white, which just happens to be what I bought. . .

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                              • #75
                                I don't understand the fascination with grey horses. Yes, I had a nice ottb mare who was grey. She was "white" when i bought her as a 5 yr old. Yes, I have the formerly dapple grey and white pinto warmblood. He is now considered by many a "white" horse, altho he's usually covered with dirt or manure. Neither had/have melanomas. But I have boarded with friends whose grey tb mares had melanomas, but lived to be 24 and 29 yoa.

                                I chose my first grey horse, the ottb mare.

                                I did not want to buy my warmblood when he backed his dappled rump out of the trailer down in Florida. I actually turned to Robert Robold and said "I don't want a grey horse!" But he had a perfect bascule and a floating trot, so I did it. And every day since for 12 yrs I've cleaned him and cleaned him.

                                But people constantly want a "white" horse. Everyone wants a grey or white horse. I have no idea why. Although that westfalen silver dapple that was boarded here a few years ago had a stunning coat. But didn't have the conformation that should come first.

                                I do think it is funny that people will pay extra for color. I was totally willing to pay extra for pinto color after the horse satisfied my requirements for conformation and bloodlines and performance. I'd buy him again, despite his color. Those dapples were beautiful though, LOL. He sunburns over 50% of his body, so he stays in in summer during the day.

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                                • #76
                                  Originally posted by ExcelEventing View Post
                                  Random melanoma question..... I just got a Grey OTTB'S, my first grey, though Ive always wanted one! I live in TX where the sun is brutal. I put coat spray with SPF 8 on him every day to potentially help with any future melanomas. Any thought on if this is helpful. I figure it can't hurt, but not sure if melanomas are even sun Related in horses!
                                  They aren't sun related. Most of them get melanomas underneath their tails,on their sheaths, teats. etc.
                                  "One reason why horses are happy is because they are not trying to impress other horses."
                                  "Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear, or a fool from any direction"

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                                  • #77
                                    Originally posted by ExcelEventing View Post
                                    Random melanoma question..... I just got a Grey OTTB'S, my first grey, though Ive always wanted one! I live in TX where the sun is brutal. I put coat spray with SPF 8 on him every day to potentially help with any future melanomas. Any thought on if this is helpful. I figure it can't hurt, but not sure if melanomas are even sun Related in horses!
                                    Maybe someone else can confirm, but I am pretty sure that melanomas are not related to UV exposure in horses -- since it's the same genetic change already present. Most external melanomas appear under the tail, around the ears, under the throat (probably as a result of embryonic melanocyte migration patterns) which are exposed to less sun than other areas. That said, UV exposure on pink/ less pigmented skin is associated with other skin cancers (I think squamous cell carcinoma esp around the eyes?), so the sunblock/ fly mask is probably wise.

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                                    • #78
                                      Originally posted by Meadow36 View Post
                                      What drives me nuts about grey horses - every little cut, scratch or ding turns black, so they have this very obvious black "scar" after a wound has healed. If you have one that goes out with other horses and gets their fair share of wounds, then they look ridiculous with all of the black marks on them.
                                      Yes, so true! My gray mare was the lowest on the totem pole wherever we went, and had those black marks all over her. That, and most of the barns we boarded at had red clay in the pastures/round pens. Red clay+gray horse=sad owner.

                                      That said, I have a soft spot for grays. I just think they are purty. That doesn't mean I would pay a huge premium for a gray if there was a much cheaper bay that I liked just as much, but if I have the option- it is gray for me.

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                                      • #79
                                        Originally posted by Falconfree View Post
                                        Yes, so true! My gray mare was the lowest on the totem pole wherever we went, and had those black marks all over her. That, and most of the barns we boarded at had red clay in the pastures/round pens. Red clay+gray horse=sad owner.

                                        That said, I have a soft spot for grays. I just think they are purty. That doesn't mean I would pay a huge premium for a gray if there was a much cheaper bay that I liked just as much, but if I have the option- it is gray for me.
                                        Funny story, I worked at a big Appaloosa farm once upon a time. One day, farm owner took a horse in on trade towards a sale horse. We called the critter Citrus, cuz if was a light orange chestnut-ty color. Except, it weren't... After a month or two, we figured out it was gray.

                                        Beast was so stained with orange dirt it really looked like a chestnut/roany color initially.
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