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FoxHunter Prospect

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  • FoxHunter Prospect

    What do you guys look for in a fox hunter prospect? I know they need to be careful & brave over fences - and be amature friendly. So I guess my question is more flat related. Do you want them to have a motor or be more relaxed? What about stamina? I know you don't really need a daisy cutter movement, but what do you look for in the gaits? Do you look for certain breeds as well? If there was already a link, just send me there. Thanks!

  • #2
    Try a search within this forum. You will come up with a lot of info.

    Considering prospects are a dime a dozen, I am quite picky, and we mostly have OTTB's as prospects. Look for sound, clean legs, quiet mentality, I was a nice flat kneed, daisy cutter movement with a big stride. The whole point of this in the hunter ring, came from the need for this in the hunt field, so it is still necessary (though, some don't realize it). Comfortable is another big thing. There is too much to list; but again, when I'm prospect shopping we usually just go to the track.

    Comment


    • #3
      In general, avoid alpha horses unless you are only looking for a staff horse. Those in middle to bottom of herd pecking order make for better field hunters.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        I tried searching for foxhunter prospect, fox hunter .... any other sudgestions?

        I was told you guys want slow, plodding horses, not hot horses. If you prefer OTTB's SteeleRdr I take it that it is not true.

        Comment


        • #5
          Some foxhunters might want slow, plodding horses, however, those aren't going to hold up well at the places I hunt. Most need to have good stamina, be able to go out on long fast runs, and be handy jumpers. I don't want a hot horse either, OTTB's aren't necessarily "hot." I definitely want something with more speed than a full draft.

          http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum...light=prospect

          Comment


          • #6
            They need to be quiet. They will get forward enough in the hunt field. Yet they have to have the stamina to go three to four hours and not take a lot to get/keep fit. I don't care how they look when they move as long as they are comfortable. They need to be careful with their feet and not be prone to slipping, tripping, or stumbling. They must not kick. They must be very sound and have excellent feet that will keep their shoes in deep mud.

            Good foxhunters come in many shapes, sizes, and forms. The most important thing is what's inside the head. I've seen soem crazy mixes of breeds turn out to be the best foxhunters and as stated above, many Tbs make good foxhunters. They are easy to get fit, are quick on their feet, and are usually comfortable. On the other hand, some Tbs will never be a foxhunter as their brain won't allow it. Depends on the horse.

            Right now I hunt all paints. I have hunted Tbs and Quarter horses too. I have never been inclined toward anything with draft in it personally but there are quite a few in our field. Most have professionals to get them fit for them or take them in early. My paints go all day, stay sane, and don't take a lot to get fit.
            -Painted Wings

            Set youself apart from the crowd, ride a paint horse, you're sure to be spotted

            Comment


            • #7
              Reliability and soundness are the biggest features. Speed doesn't really matter. Stamina can be made to a certain extent. Safety and reliability can't be added. A big bonus would be very comfortable gaits that you can sit without bouncing around.

              Here are some stereotypical aspects of some breeds (not true for all of them, but just a broad idea, IMO):
              TB- bold, fast, will stay up in the front until every other horse can't make it any farther
              Draft X- all across the board. Slower than the TB, but not as hot. Great for the bigger men riding.
              Irish Draught- Perfect hunt horse (I'm a bit biased) if you have the money. Though, my MFH has one that won't ride behind a leader since he know's he THE leader (which is why he's her lead horse)
              QH- typically in the middle of the pack, not too hot headed
              WB breeds- typically more expensive. Some can be hot, others are perfectly content anywhere in the field.


              I currently have a very adventurous ride on my TB. I know he wants to run in front of everyone and that he will get grumpy when I ask him to slow down or hold back. He will take every jump and go through every ditch without a second thought. We did have a slight problem with him grabbing the bit and running when other horses got out of control, but besides that I know his reaction to everything that comes up.

              Comment


              • #8
                I was thinking the same thing! I have a few Irish looking for hunt homes... A lady came out a few weeks ago to try the 5yo (son of master hunt horse in Ireland) and said he is too quiet- I didn't know there was such a thing!! He has NO spook, etc etc. She said she wanted something more uppity - maybe like my 2yo ISH that is 3/4 TB instead of this guys that is only 1/2 TB. I guess it does depend on the specific hunt and rider. I put her on my TB guy and he was too much, so there has to be a happy medium somewhere?

                Comment


                • #9
                  For me it's 1) good mind 2) strong build 3) athletic enough to keep us upright in all kinds of tricky situations 4) a comfortable all day trot

                  I currently hunt a paint and she is fabulous. Not the fastest in the field but totally unflappable, rock solid on her feet (built like a tank) and super smooth at all gaits. I feel lucky to have her!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would also add to this great list that a horse who loads and travels well and is the same horse when it get's away from home makes foxhunting much more enjoyable.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Snow Princess View Post
                      I would also add to this great list that a horse who loads and travels well and is the same horse when it get's away from home makes foxhunting much more enjoyable.
                      Certainly makes it easier! Though I think with time/practice most hunters tend to do well with trailering if they like their job. I know my dad's hunt horse LOVED the trailer because it meant he was going to meets - if other horses were being loaded in a trailer and he could see them but wasn't invited he would get quite upset! If he saw an empty trailer ready to be loaded he would just hop on in and then look around like, "I'm ready! Let's go!"

                      I think a good brain is definitely the most important part. Most horses tend to get fairly riled up in the hunt field, so your average easygoing bombproof slow horse will probably spunk up a good bit when galloping with a herd of other excited horses. I think generally it's not the horse's inherent speed holding them back in the field, it's much more often the horse's fitness level and/or the rider. (Fear, fitness, poor riding, etc.)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        My current hunt horse has just about everything I look for:
                        - Loads easily
                        - Goes anywhere in the field
                        - Not competitive when out galloping
                        - Fast enough
                        - Easy to stop
                        - Brave over fences
                        - Doesn't kick
                        - Stands at the check
                        - Can ride in a snaffle (or bitless)

                        I wish he were a bit more sure footed (tends to stumble over roots), he's not that easy to get fit (full Trakehner), and I'd like to knock 5 years off his age (he's 17).

                        I have a TB that I'm grooming for the hunt field. He's very sure footed, easy to keep fit, fast as all get out and brave. Unfortunately, he's also very competitive and hot headed so we're still working on the idea that being in the middle of the pack is an okay spot!
                        Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                        EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by TrakGeorge View Post
                          I tried searching for foxhunter prospect, fox hunter .... any other sudgestions?

                          I was told you guys want slow, plodding horses, not hot horses. If you prefer OTTB's SteeleRdr I take it that it is not true.

                          They need to have a brain and be able to go where the rider puts them.If I had to hunt a slow plodding horse I think I would shoot myself.
                          "Perhaps the final test of anybody's love of dogs is their willingness to permit them to make a camping ground of the bed" -Henry T. Merwin

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            they are as you find them

                            all the above info has merit but only hunting one will tell.

                            my first hunt horse was leggy, tb looking, but all QH
                            good beginner horse once the new to hunting wore off
                            he was happy to go any where in the field.

                            my second: I was over horsed, but he provided 10 solid years of hunting
                            he wanted to be in front and was like holding the QE2 by the spring lines.
                            never lost a shoe, never an off day, easy to load, would go in to any thicket.
                            no problem leading the field or whipping in, a bit strong else where.
                            a mixed blessing. he was a TWH/clyde paint [photo in my profile]

                            my newest horse a DWB/clyde is more of a follower and a bit green
                            only a little smaller than #2 he is up to packing my weight around
                            and is [I hope] over his loading issues
                            he stops easily when the field pulls up with a snaffle , has not lost a shoe
                            and likes to jump. He is dead calm walking with the hounds.
                            video frame http://members.arstechnica.com/x/armandh2/NVE00001.JPG
                            just standing http://members.arstechnica.com/x/armandh2/PA040707.JPG
                            except for the loading a good prospect

                            often it is a matter of what one is willing to overlook or deal with
                            those that have a + in all the boxes are out of my price range.
                            Last edited by armandh; May. 21, 2008, 05:45 PM.
                            more hay, less grain

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I too have had great sucess with ClydeCross's as Foxhunting horses.. I Recently sold this gelding and he hunted well for me..
                              In Canada we have a short spring season and as you can see in the youtube Clip sometimes it's a bit soggy.

                              http://pets.webshots.com/photo/20928...57148385HMNZKi ( i'm in the rust britches and blue helmet)

                              Here is a video clip and you can see many crossbreeds in my hunt the BeaverMeadowFoxhounds and this Hunt is at John Curtis's Ridegcrest Farm in Bobcaygeon Ontario.
                              http://youtube.com/watch?v=VeeFjPC0rQI

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Snow Princess View Post
                                I would also add to this great list that a horse who loads and travels well and is the same horse when it get's away from home makes foxhunting much more enjoyable.
                                Amen to that!!!!!!!!!
                                I have not started foxhunting yet but this definately would be a must. My newbie and I are going through this now. Not fun but we are 80% there (a far cry from where we started). Next time around I won't even consider anything that will not get off and on or tie to a trailer. Not worth the headache.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  My QH would make a great field hunter! I would love to take him, but there isnt much in the way of hunts around here. He is my Training level eventer at the moment, and I think some of the most sought after qualities in event horses would be the same as in a field hunter.

                                  He is easy to keep fit, never gets mentally frazzled (which saves a lot of energy), has smooth gaits, never kicks, is a careful and bold jumper, he is clever, and can keep himself out of trouble, and he also looks for holes in the ground and avoids them, which is very handy. He also has the QH flat kneed movement, but I really dont see the value of this in the hunt field.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Do you want to know what kind of horses foxhunters want because you want to sell them? Or because you want to buy one for you?

                                    I guess in either case, the majority of people are going to want something quiet (in the sense of not being overly spooky), that is comfortable to ride, and that will (as someone else said) ride where you put it.

                                    Some people will want a faster horse that can be a staff horse and go off alone and cover ground, jump the moon... but the majority probably want safe and comfortable.

                                    Here is a link to our new website, http://www.foxhuntva.com/joomla/inde...d=14&Itemid=57 (or just go to www.foxhuntva.com and click the faqs about horses)

                                    Cindy has written a couple articles on what kind of horse you might want and what kind of training it should have.
                                    Cheryl Microutsicos, in the heart of Virginia
                                    www.wowgraphicdesigns.com
                                    www.usea2.net
                                    www.foxhuntva.com

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      The kind of horse depends a lot on the rider and the territory. I can vary a lot. Also your hunt and the kind of hounds and how serious the huntsman.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        But I want a plodder...

                                        If I had to hunt a slow plodding horse I think I would shoot myself.
                                        Most horses tend to get fairly riled up in the hunt field, so your average easygoing bombproof slow horse will probably spunk up a good bit when galloping with a herd of other excited horses.
                                        Some foxhunters might want slow, plodding horses, however, those aren't going to hold up well at the places I hunt. Most need to have good stamina, be able to go out on long fast runs, and be handy jumpers. I don't want a hot horse either, OTTB's aren't necessarily "hot." I definitely want something with more speed than a full draft.
                                        All this said, is it alright to ride a draft or heavy draftX in a hunt. For instance, I am very partial to Percherons, and my desire is to PURPOSELY move at a slower pace - even stay in 2nd flight/hilltoppers. I want a horse with a calm, bombproof, disposition and most Percherons have this and are still usually the lightest of the draft breeds making them more versatile and agile.

                                        Is this frowned upon? Does anyone purposely ride drafts?

                                        Comment

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