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Breed blindness or bias

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  • #21
    Even though I probably wouldn't consider buying one now, I owned an Egyptian type arabian that was a cool little guy. He was never anything other than a trail/backyard horse, but I took him off my relative's hands for about 6 months, and ended up doing crossrails and some basic WTC type stuff. He did it all, wasn't spooky, never pulled any dirty tricks and was just a horse.

    But apparently, that's not the norm. Or so I've read.

    As for the others: I like QHs and crosses, OTTBs have been pleasant enough, although I prefer something a little meatier under me, a couple of warmbloods, Appaloosas ... Oh, and a standardbred that was just a saint of a horse that would jump the moon if you let him.

    Right now, I'm looking for something 'thicker' than a TB, with a great brain, good bone, that's willing and versatile. I want to be able to take them to a local hunter show one weekend, do hilltoppers the next, with maybe some baby/local eventing thrown in. So far, I've been looking at Shires, QHs (Appendix), Irish Draughts and Cleveland Bays as well.
    The dude abides ...

    Comment


    • #22
      I hate sweeping generalizations. Each horse is an individual. ANY breed can make a good horse, if that individual horse has a good temperament and tends to be healthy & sound.

      I've ridden one fresian and hung out on my friend's friesian breeding farm, including going to Inspections with her. I disagree they're spooky or can't canter willingly. I love how they look in the dressage ring! One problem with fresians is that a properly bred, pure, registered fresian costs big money. So I see a lot of fresian crosses or hairy big black horses sold as "fresians" to the point where people accept any big fuzzy black horse-shaped thing as a "Fresian".

      For myself, I prefer drafts or draft crosses. They can carry weight, are generally less emotional/reactive, have thick enough skins they don't need to be bubble wrapped, aren't as prone to some type of injuries, often don't even need grain, and have bad temperament bred out of them (who is going to put up with a herd of 2000lb horses who love to bite people for fun?). I personally am riding a belgian and a fjord right now.

      I used to like the foundation QHs. But the more I learned about the aqha horses (eg. allowing hypp and navicular-prone horses to keep propagating), I lost interest. Too many qh breeders are cranking out quantity, not quality.

      I know some people love TBs, but they're just not for me. Too many of them are coming from those breeding for racing: bred for only one thing -- speed. As a result I have some serious concerns about long-term soundness, too-thin bone & skin, and temperament/trainability. But that's just my personal opinion.
      Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

      Comment


      • #23
        Well, who knows the TWH may even have Freisian in its bloodlines too. And not through the Morgans. Apparently, some of the early gaited mares were bred on purpose to what has been described as a black German Coach Horse in order to get more heighth and substance. This was done arount the turn of the 19th century, pre-breed registries.

        There has been lots of discussion among TWH historians as to exactly what breed of horse this stallion was and if there were more than one of these in the area. Now I could easily see where someone from Middle Tennessee would think that a Freisian coach horse was a "german" horse. And becides "German" is easier to pronounce and spell. lol

        I favor Percherons or Percheron crosses- as I posted elsewhere they are the affordable Big Black Horse.

        Comment


        • #24
          I would definitely say I do not have breed blindness. I know the "likely" faults/shortcomings of the breeds that I like the most. Honestly, this time last year I would have said (and did say, I'm sure!) that I would MUCH prefer a WB-type/push ride over a sensitive, TB type. That sort made me nervous. Now, after riding a TB almost exclusively for 6 months, I'm LOVING the small adjustments, fine-tuning, sensitive ride.

          I think you could pair me with almost ANY horse 'for long enough' and I will tell you that type of ride is my new favorite way of going! Whether that is more common with a certain breed- or type- or not... I'd say you find your common themes within members of the same breed, quite often. But people are always quick to point out the individuals that go against that, of which there are many, too!

          The temperament on the ground is my one constant... I like a more in-your-pocket type, affectionate and goofy. I've personally had more experiences like that with TBs than any other breed, but certainly it's not breed-specific

          If I were to go horse shopping tomorrow (ohhh, were I!!) I would not only look at certain breeds. I never, during my online 'window shopping' marathons, refine a search on a database to include certain breeds, or exclude others. I typically select 15.3 or above (I'm 5'9" and change), and within a certain price range.

          Oh! I DO much, much prefer geldings to mares. Don't know why, probably just a result of riding more of them when I was younger. So, I'm more apt to spend more time lingering on an ad for a gelding than a mare.

          Especially if he's orange. I like big orange geldings


          Sooooo... probably not any breed blindness, just horse-craziness making me blind My mom still laughs at how, at the end of every single weekly lesson when I was ages 7-13ish I would hop in the car and say, "I rode 'so and so' today! I LOVE HIM!! HE'S MY NEW FAVORITE!!!" (could be anything- huge appy cross, little cresty pinto pony, qh, a who-knows-what....)

          Comment


          • #25
            More likely the Morgans have Norman horses in their ancestry, not northern Low Country horses like Friesians. The French brought their Normans and Cob Normands to Canada, which isn't far from Vermont, dontcha know. I've got a Morgan/Paint cross—a gorgeous head for a mutt horse, lovely eye, flamboyant coat, great balance, plenty of go, and snappy jumping style (goes eventing, hunters, jumpers, the whole bit. I even ski behind him in the winter).

            Comment


            • #26
              Originally posted by philosoraptor View Post
              I hate sweeping generalizations. Each horse is an individual. ANY breed can make a good horse, if that individual horse has a good temperament and tends to be healthy & sound.

              I've ridden one fresian and hung out on my friend's friesian breeding farm, including going to Inspections with her. I disagree they're spooky or can't canter willingly. I love how they look in the dressage ring! One problem with fresians is that a properly bred, pure, registered fresian costs big money. So I see a lot of fresian crosses or hairy big black horses sold as "fresians" to the point where people accept any big fuzzy black horse-shaped thing as a "Fresian".

              For myself, I prefer drafts or draft crosses. They can carry weight, are generally less emotional/reactive, have thick enough skins they don't need to be bubble wrapped, aren't as prone to some type of injuries, often don't even need grain, and have bad temperament bred out of them (who is going to put up with a herd of 2000lb horses who love to bite people for fun?). I personally am riding a belgian and a fjord right now.

              I used to like the foundation QHs. But the more I learned about the aqha horses (eg. allowing hypp and navicular-prone horses to keep propagating), I lost interest. Too many qh breeders are cranking out quantity, not quality.

              I know some people love TBs, but they're just not for me. Too many of them are coming from those breeding for racing: bred for only one thing -- speed. As a result I have some serious concerns about long-term soundness, too-thin bone & skin, and temperament/trainability. But that's just my personal opinion.
              That is clearly breed blindness and breed bashing from it.

              Sure, there is bad qh breeding, but tell me there is not bad draft breeding and not enough testing for metabolic syndrome and who would want to ride the clearly square peg to fit round holes, like where light horses are more suitable?

              Because it is someone's preference to do things different, that doesn't mean it is the best for the job.

              I have yet to see but the rare individual of any one other breed to cut a cow in an arena like a cowbred cutting qh can do it, bar none and have had and seen some very good TBs and arabians cutting nicely.
              I doubt anyone pulling the beer wagon is going to want to train a big hitch of paso finos to pull it.

              Some we do with horses does require we have the right pegs for the right holes to do it best.
              Some we do don't require a specially bred horse for that, we can enjoy whatever kind of horse we like to use to do whatever such we want.

              I also like light, riding type mules for riding, yet a different kind of horse.

              Comment


              • #27
                Maybe I've been lucky in my experiences with TBs but have always gravitated towards the TBs and TB types and particularly TB mares. When I rode QHs, the ones I liked best were the TB types. I would sum it up as smart, willing, brave, enthusiastic, forward, sensitive, great work ethic. I find them more straightforward and fun than the push ride type horse. I actually prefer a narrower horse to ride.

                Of course I do agree that TBs can have less than ideal feet (due to nature, nurture or both) but I'm willing to put up with that and the resultung farrier bills for the things I love about the breed.

                Comment


                • #28
                  At some point or another I have had most breeds come through my barn for training. (Including a lovely mule.) I've found that over the years I've come to appreciate the Arabians and Standardbreds. Maybe because are both endurance breeds? I don't do endurance but I find both breeds have good work ethics. I know some will disagree with that concerning the Arabians---the people that think all Arabs are flighty, silly little things, but, I find them pretty solid citizens with correct training.

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Originally posted by philosoraptor View Post
                    I hate sweeping generalizations. Each horse is an individual. ANY breed can make a good horse, if that individual horse has a good temperament and tends to be healthy & sound.

                    I've ridden one fresian and hung out on my friend's friesian breeding farm, including going to Inspections with her. I disagree they're spooky or can't canter willingly. I love how they look in the dressage ring! One problem with fresians is that a properly bred, pure, registered fresian costs big money. So I see a lot of fresian crosses or hairy big black horses sold as "fresians" to the point where people accept any big fuzzy black horse-shaped thing as a "Fresian".

                    For myself, I prefer drafts or draft crosses. They can carry weight, are generally less emotional/reactive, have thick enough skins they don't need to be bubble wrapped, aren't as prone to some type of injuries, often don't even need grain, and have bad temperament bred out of them (who is going to put up with a herd of 2000lb horses who love to bite people for fun?). I personally am riding a belgian and a fjord right now.

                    I used to like the foundation QHs. But the more I learned about the aqha horses (eg. allowing hypp and navicular-prone horses to keep propagating), I lost interest. Too many qh breeders are cranking out quantity, not quality.

                    I know some people love TBs, but they're just not for me. Too many of them are coming from those breeding for racing: bred for only one thing -- speed. As a result I have some serious concerns about long-term soundness, too-thin bone & skin, and temperament/trainability. But that's just my personal opinion.
                    I can't really agree that this 'bashing.'

                    Yes a great QH is a great QH BUT there are also a LOT of hypp and navicular prone horses in the QH world. Bluey, I don't see how you can disagree that the, very impressively successful large scale QH breeding industry, has yielded some very 'successful' FUBAR scenarios. Simply by virtue of size(of the industry,) the mistakes are going to add up to bigger problems. Impressive, being the most obvious example.

                    I know a Fjord lover who has mostly great horses, but one or two of the beasts are evil and need to be shot. Ok, maybe that's an exaggeration... but they've dumped every last person who's got on them. No matter what the rep of the breed, they are all individuals. But the sheer size of the more successful ones (TB, QH, standardbred, Arabian, etc) means that the 'oopses' will be larger.

                    So if 1% of Fjords are unrideable asses that's only a few horses. But 1% of TB or QH have issues that make them 'pasture ornaments,' that means thousands and thousands that are unrideable.

                    Mathematics does play a part here.

                    Personally, I can't help the OP as I really don't have a breed favorite. I've ridden wonderfully bred horses that were lame at 6 from navicular despite being world level champions. And I've rid some truly homely nags I would have given my right arm to keep, they were so reliable and able.

                    I do have a few breeding lines, of different breeds, that I like. The 'R' line from Oldenburg. And my current OTTB is such a rockstar, I would love more of his relatives. Loyalty to a former employer means if I ever win the lottery have to get a QH from the Miss White Trash lines.
                    "Friend" me !

                    http://www.facebook.com/isabeau.solace

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      I event. Mine are all OTTBs, bought at the track. I like a particular type, that some TBs have, and probably some other breed horses too (WBX? appendix?). However, shopping at the track, I only run into TBs.

                      I also suspect I couldn't afford a purpose-bred sport horse, so I haven't spent too much time looking for prospects not at the track.

                      Comment


                      • #31
                        If I had to put my heart with just one breed, it would be Standardbreds. I love them. Most of the ones I've known have been kind, forgiving, brave, and had great feet.

                        But what about he flip side of the whole "breed" argument...the grade horse? I know a lot of people who would never dream of buying an unregistered animal (not including breeders in this, because they are breeding registered animals for a reason), no matter how good the animal is or what it is capable of doing? Why do people care about papers when they're buying a gelding? I understand that it makes it easier to trace the horse's history, but if it can do what you want and do it well, why do some people discount them summarily?

                        Especially considering that many, if not most breeds, have been developed from a variety of other breeds/ Someone touched on the influence of the Morgan in the Standardbred and TWH. There is a huge TB influence in the Quarter Horse, and some QH lines have heavy Percheron influence. The QH is a huge part of both the modern Paint and Appaloosa. And on, and on. So, why do so many riders gravitate toward a breed when there are grade horses who have the type to do whatever they want in the open show world, and generally at a cheaper price. It seems to me that wanting only a registered horse is also a type of breed bias, no?

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Registration papers tell you who the parents were and more important, the AGE of your horse, something most grade horses you have to guess what it is once past 5 years old, to get an approximation, the older the less accurate.

                          Registration papers on a gelding help when you are looking for certain bloodlines you like for what you do, help when you show where those are necessary, as in breed shows, help when you sell a horse because the buyer can tell what the horse may be just on the breeding alone.

                          Sure, any horse in venues where all that doesn't matter will be fine, but don't dismiss offhand that registration papers are valuable, even for geldings.

                          Speaking of standardbreds, I participated in endurance rides, 200 km in two days and rode a big, lanky STB mare and we trotted all the way.
                          She was wonderful and always took excellent care of me.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            I definitely have a TYPE. Grew up in New England surrounded by old style Morgans. Aesthetically, I have a strong preference for any of the baroque type horses. I have a Friesian cross that def. could pass for a Morgan. I do NOT like the more modern type of Morgan. I like the Iberian breeds, cobs, etc. I love drafts, too.

                            However, I do think Morgans are the end-all, be-all.

                            There are types/breeds of horses that I look at and can't IMAGINE any sane person would find them attractive.

                            HOWEVER

                            There are two horses that I would describe as lifetime "heart horse" & one of them was a palomino Paint. If you would have told me that I would be in love with this horse b/f I knew him, I would have said you were insane.

                            I used to hate Arabs. All the ones I knew were nuts and I thought they were ugly (triangle butts & seahorse faces) I am now at a barn full of Arabs & Arab warmbloods that are sane and smart. It then occurred to me that it was the Arab -people- that I had known that were nuts. LOL. This breeder/trainer has fantastic horses, all gorgeous & talented. So I guess I have come 'round.

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Originally posted by Bluey View Post
                              Registration papers tell you who the parents were and more important, the AGE of your horse, something most grade horses you have to guess what it is once past 5 years old, to get an approximation, the older the less accurate.

                              Registration papers on a gelding help when you are looking for certain bloodlines you like for what you do, help when you show where those are necessary, as in breed shows, help when you sell a horse because the buyer can tell what the horse may be just on the breeding alone.

                              Sure, any horse in venues where all that doesn't matter will be fine, but don't dismiss offhand that registration papers are valuable, even for geldings.
                              Right, and I understand liking the predictability of certain things, but for open shows, if the horse is a proven performer or has shown the potential to be, does it really matter? Yet some people will refuse to even LOOK at a grade horse, regardless of performance record or other attributes, and a grade will often sell for less money, regardless of its actual record. To me, that's every bit as breed biased as someone who says "I hate those crazy Arabs," or "I love Friesans!"

                              And while I agree it's nice to know a horse's exact age, as long as he's sound for his job, to me, that's more important than the number on the paper. I've known horses in their 20's to be sound at various levels of competition and horses under 10 to already be on-and-off lame. Conformation has a lot to do with that, and well, papers don't guarantee good conformation, and some grade horses are put together beautifully for their intended use. Dismissing an otherwise suitable horse offhand simply because it doesn't have papers seems silly to me, and so does creating a bunch of "registries" for what are truly grade horses. After all, they can't read.

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by HenryisBlaisin' View Post
                                Right, and I understand liking the predictability of certain things, but for open shows, if the horse is a proven performer or has shown the potential to be, does it really matter? Yet some people will refuse to even LOOK at a grade horse, regardless of performance record or other attributes, and a grade will often sell for less money, regardless of its actual record. To me, that's every bit as breed biased as someone who says "I hate those crazy Arabs," or "I love Friesans!"

                                And while I agree it's nice to know a horse's exact age, as long as he's sound for his job, to me, that's more important than the number on the paper. I've known horses in their 20's to be sound at various levels of competition and horses under 10 to already be on-and-off lame. Conformation has a lot to do with that, and well, papers don't guarantee good conformation, and some grade horses are put together beautifully for their intended use. Dismissing an otherwise suitable horse offhand simply because it doesn't have papers seems silly to me, and so does creating a bunch of "registries" for what are truly grade horses. After all, they can't read.
                                Don't you think that you sound a bit biased against registered horses?

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by Bluey View Post
                                  Don't you think that you sound a bit biased against registered horses?
                                  I'm not; I've had both. Just asking if it isn't also breed bias when people overlook or pay significantly less for a horse that doesn't have papers JUST because it doesn't have papers?

                                  I ride the horse, not the papers. If it has them, cool; I enjoy researching bloodlines. But if it doesn't, I'm not going to pass it by. A good horse is a good horse.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by HenryisBlaisin' View Post
                                    Just asking if it isn't also breed bias when people overlook or pay significantly less for a horse that doesn't have papers JUST because it doesn't have papers?
                                    No, not really. Given the present shabby state of the H/J industry I don't take NUFFIN' without a DNA test and papers, mainly b/c I'd like to be sure I actually bought what I thought I bought.

                                    Plus, for me personally, I *love* to research pedigrees. I like the *history* of it. I *like* knowing that my ASB was descended from Traveller's sire; I *like* knowing that one of my TB's ancestors was given to Queen Anne by one of the dukes and lived at Hampton Court Palace his whole life long, and that another one paid for a bunch of renovations to Sandringham. (All true.)

                                    I've had experience over the years with a variety of breeds but I keep coming back to the TBs. I don't think this is breed bias but I don't think it's coincidence either. I just "get" TBs in a way I don't other horses.
                                    "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      After buying a "grade" horse who was "about 10" on the bill of sale and closer to 15-16 in real life, I like papers. Accurate papers,microchips, that sort of thing. It takes one risk factor out of the equation. Risk has a $ value. You should pay more for the identical horse with papers, less for the one without. Papers aren't everything, but rather one piece to consider.

                                      I still have my little "grade" gelding. He's a conformationally challenged guy with a big, opinionated personality and small, Navicular feet. He's a pasture puff, but I do love him so!!

                                      But I also love my lovely Oldenburg mare who turned 8 on August 14, 2012.

                                      Different horses, capabilities, and $.
                                      Born under a rock and owned by beasts!

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Originally posted by xQHDQ View Post
                                        Temperment-wise, I like quiet and willing (who doesn't).
                                        *Raises hand* I want willing, but I don't want a quiet horse, at least not when I'm riding said beast. I want up-headed, bold and forward with a huge trot.

                                        Therefore, QH and other stock breeds in general bore me to tears- with the exception of a good cutting horse.

                                        I love my ASBs, though I realize that most of them bred for show are not for the average beginner owner. I love Morgans, too. They were my first love, but when I moved to KY I realized there's not a whole lot of places to show a Morgan. I think the Morgan horse is probably the most versatile horse ever bred- they do English (all disciplines), Western (some are cow-y), driving -and look good doing it. And they come in all sizes except mondo-huge. I joke about those crazy Ay-rabs, but in all honesty I like most of them (not a fan of the extreme Egyptian look). As a teen I trained and showed a silly young Arab to many, many local blue ribbons- he only dumped me at home! The TWHs and STBs I've known have been cool horses, too.

                                        If I rode H/J, I'd probably be a TB person- I like 'em hot!

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          I'm incredibly breed biased. My breed of choice is the Saddlebred. They are, to me, the most elegant, personable, forgiving, intelligent, and willing breed.
                                          There is not a single negative thing about their characteristics I can say; I can not say the same about some of the training methods, of course.

                                          I do own a QH and a Shetland cross, along with my ASB. I love them for personal reasons, but did not go out and seek them. When they pass, I won't own another breed.

                                          Since I was four years old, I have never had the desire to even look at another breed. I've often been the only ASB owner in a barn full of TBs and QHs, and I like it that way!!

                                          Comment

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