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What breed horses do the Amish use?

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  • What breed horses do the Amish use?

    Watching the funeral procession of the PA Amish school shooting makes me ask.
    www.savethehorses.org GA Horse Rescue
    http://community.webshots.com/user/seahorsefarm

  • #2
    Anything

    Morgans, TWH, STDB, TB - whatever they can get for not a lot of dough. And some people send their young stock to them to be 'trained' to drive.

    We see lots of thin horses hooked to carriages here in MI - or dripping sweat as they wait outside of business establishements. Not to say ALL Amish are tough on their stock - but it seems the rule rather then the exception around here.
    Crayola posse ~ Lazer Lemon yellow
    Take time to give...it is too short a day to be selfish. - Ben Franklin

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Found this:
      "Amish horses are draft horses. Draft horses have thick legs and muscular shoulders and haunches. They have been bred to pull things. The Amish do not ride draft horses -- they ride in wagons or buggies. Draft horses are not fast, but they can pull a buggy uphill and downhill without breaking stride. "

      She-it! If those are drafts I've seen on TV, they are mighty, um, lean! I do know they are treated as work animals vs. "pets".
      www.savethehorses.org GA Horse Rescue
      http://community.webshots.com/user/seahorsefarm

      Comment


      • #4
        I live about 30-45 minutes from Lancaster County, PA where the shooting was, it is definitely a major amish country, while there are many breeds of horses used probably the most common I have seen are saddlebreds, when I went to the local auction with a lady who owned a rescue, many of the horses were saddlebreds, she has rescued many over the years from the kill pens, not all Amish people treat their horses badly though, they don't baby them or anything, but during the winter a lot when they have their buggy tied in front of a store you will see a blanket on them and stuff.

        Comment


        • #5
          Actually there is a very VERY large Amish market for American Saddlebreds. If you are seeing up-headed light breeds that's the most likely one. We see the Amish folk at the TSE Tattersall's Saddlebred sales every time, spring, summer and fall.
          "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief

          Comment


          • #6
            I've seen horses pulling Amish "cars" around here....most of them are Standardbreds and yes, they do look rather lean. Even, I've seen horses working on gravel roads! I wish I could take them away from there....

            This rescue site, www.4thehorses.com rescue several Amish horses.
            Will get a dream horse!
            More riding, swimming, and rowing, less posting

            Comment


            • #7
              Most of the horses you see in those photos are saddlebreds. There are many, many saddlebreds that end up with the Amish and many that also are run through the New Holland sale and go to slaughter when the Amish have no use for them. Many are former show horses.

              I have one in my barn currently that was purchased as a two year old by the Amish at the Tattersalls fall sale in 1998 and was put through New Holland this summer as a 10 year old and it was Christy Parker (from Saddlebred Rescue) and the meat-man bidding on him. I got this horse through Saddlebred rescue.

              The Amish tend to like the saddlebreds, morgans and standardbreds as these breeds are usually already broke to drive at an early age by the breed trainers. The horses that don't cut it in the show ring often end up at the TSE Tattersalls sales in April, July and October. Even though these are high-end catalog sales, the Amish frequent them and will pick up young stock and breeding stock.

              This is the rescue forum. The rescues are usually posted here first and include the horses available for adoption from New Jersey and Georgia rescue locations.
              http://www.saddlebredtalk.com/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=22

              This is Saddlebred Rescue's website.
              http://www.saddlebredrescue.com
              Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.
              Bernard M. Baruch

              Comment


              • #8
                I live in Southern Ontario where a lot of farms are owned by mennonites who share basically the same way of life as the Amish.
                They use mostly STB for their buggies and Belgians and Clydes to work the fields. My daughter always points out that most buggy horses look lame and when they are "broken" they end up at the stockyard auction on Tuesday mornings and go mostly for meat.
                Sad to see some come in sweaty from pulling the buggy TO the auction.. where their unlucky replacement will take the buggy home.
                To them, horses are a tool.. even at the tack shop I go to which is run by mennonites, I raised a few eyebrows when I mentioned my horse is unsound but with me for life.. and I have seen a few kids' buggies pulled by little Shetland ponies.

                Comment


                • #9
                  This rescue site, www.4thehorses.com rescue several Amish horses.
                  So do Saddlebred Rescue and Another Chance For Horses.
                  "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Here in New York State we see a predominence of Standardbreds and some Saddlebreds among the Amish road horses. Drafts are used for the field work with few, if any, seen on the roads.

                    At a local Amish store I mentioned seeing a very brave man driving an obviously very green, fancy Saddlebred to a breaking cart. This was a gorgeous horse that was bouncing all over the very busy highway. The store owner said that (in her opinion) Saddlebreds were "all show and no go". She preferred the Standardbred.

                    I've seen some hard working horses on the road but all that I've personally seen have been of good weight and with shining coats.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Seahorsefarmtobe View Post
                      Found this:
                      "Amish horses are draft horses. Draft horses have thick legs and muscular shoulders and haunches. They have been bred to pull things. The Amish do not ride draft horses -- they ride in wagons or buggies. Draft horses are not fast, but they can pull a buggy uphill and downhill without breaking stride. "

                      She-it! If those are drafts I've seen on TV, they are mighty, um, lean! I do know they are treated as work animals vs. "pets".
                      They use drafts to work fields. Light breeds are used to pull the buggies. We live in a very heavily Amish community and I see some good and some bad. I've seen the skin and bones horses with feet worn off to nubs, and I've also see the fit and healthy ones with lovely shod hooves covered up in rain slickers during inclement weather. I too have seen them standing tied and fully blanketed during the winters. Our town has hitching rails at prominent businesses since we have so many Amish nearby.

                      Amish are humans - no different than you or me. Just like some people in the "normal" world care for their horses perfectly, and some starve them to death, so it happens in the Amish community as well.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Let's not go there again with another "bash the Amish because they use horses" thread. Right now I would think some people might have the sense to back off on citing one-off examples of horses worked in their view too much.

                        Image: AP - funeral procession of Marian Fisher

                        Image: Reuters - police on horseback lead procession

                        Image: AFP - funeral procession

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I had a long conversation with an Amish man early this year, from two groups that I met while I was traveling. He said they used mainly Standardbreds; Morgans were too slow although they could go all day. He had two buggy horses, personally, because the main one was so lame that he got a young one that shied a lot on the road (he beat the horse when it shied and his Jack Russell terrier fell out of the open door and got his neck run over by the back wwwheel). He toldme of a standardbred/saddlebred cross pregnant mare his father got at auction for $250, and what high hopes he had for the foal. It died, he suspected of exposure. He was PROUD of how humanitarian he was when a mare of his cut her leg to the bone and instead of shooting it, like his father said to, he just turned out the mare (no vet care). After nine months, he said, the leg was pretty well healed. I was quite disappointed, after all his lectures on purer, simpler lives, to see that their clothing was made (home-made, except for what they bought at Goodwill) of ultra-cheap polyester, and they ate baloney and American cheese on cheap white bread for lunch, with cans of Pepsi.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Glimmerglass View Post
                            Let's not go there again with another "bash the Amish because they use horses" thread. Right now I would think some people might have the sense to back off on citing one-off examples of horses worked in their view too much.

                            Image: AP - funeral procession of Marian Fisher

                            Image: Reuters - police on horseback lead procession

                            Image: AFP - funeral procession
                            I agree. Also people should remember that horses who truly work for a living are completely bizarre to most horsemen and women. We use our horses for fun and sport. Not for putting food on the table and for transportation. Horses who truly WORK every single day of their lives are thinner and of a different personality usually than sport horses living in fancy stables and going to a jumper show every weekend.

                            The way the Amish horses look is how millions of horses across the US looked prior to the industrialization. It is hard for us to understand the horse being used as a beast of burden rather than a partner in sport.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I too live within an hour of the community where this tragedy took place. As previous posters have said it's mostly Standardbreds you see for the buggy horses. Drafts are used for field work as well as draft mules.

                              There are good and bad in every community. I have seen the animals at New Holland in not so good condition but I have also seen the animals that are well cared for an blanketed. Right now, I think the Amish community could use our prayers and well wishes rather than any bashing.
                              To many, the words love, hope and dreams are synonymous with horses. ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

                              http://www.ctgponies.4t.com/

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                We all use horses, but we don't all dump horses at auctions frequented by killer buyers when we are "done" using them. That's all I have to say about it.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by nightsong View Post
                                  I was quite disappointed, after all his lectures on purer, simpler lives, to see that their clothing was made (home-made, except for what they bought at Goodwill) of ultra-cheap polyester, and they ate baloney and American cheese on cheap white bread for lunch, with cans of Pepsi.
                                  And........this disappoints you for........WHAT reason?? I don't think it's any of your business what the Amish eat, or if they drink Pepsi. And nor is it my business. I couldn't care less if they ate termites or caviare. What's it to me? Nothing. And it's nothing to you either.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by catknsn View Post
                                    We all use horses, but we don't all dump horses at auctions frequented by killer buyers when we are "done" using them.
                                    And neither do they.

                                    Some - sure. But NOT all. But then our very own "normal" citizens dump horses at auctions every single day too.

                                    I used to work at a dairy farm who had 2 driving ponies, bought from the Amish. When the Amish owner decided the ponies were too slow and small, he drove them down the road, stopping at all the dairy farms and horse farms asking if anybody wanted them FOR FREE.

                                    My boss at the farm, took the ponies and gave them a great home, and they were the cutest little things and they still live there to this day - just as fat and healthy and happy as they can be.

                                    I just can't believe the wicked cold hearts of some people on this board. The Amish community has been devestated and ripped to the soul with a crime they never imagined possible. Their innocent children were brutally executed. Their way of life and beliefs were shaken and their lives will NEVER be innocent like they once were. Have the decency to hang your head in recognition of their sorrow, just for a moment. Is that so hard???

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I saw the funeral Procession

                                      on TV last night, and I was surprised, all the horses looked in good weight shiny and had a bright look to them Alot of times you see ones that are noticably lame, head bob. I saw one in the procession that had a slight bob. But they looked like Tb's and standardbreds! Bays , all the ones that I saw. I bet they stear clear of greys, too colorful?? I cant recall seeing a chestnut too often either. I had a friend who had his barn built by 2 Amish brothers here in MI. They did a great job. also put up fencing, they arrived every morning and tied there horse buggy and all to a tree. My friend told them they could unhitch him and put him in the empty grass paddock.. they never did. They also never offered the horse water, but My frined broke down and gave the horse some hay and a bucket. They never said a word.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I was kind of admiring the ones I keep seeing on the video clips on TV... some looked very Saddlebred and some looked very Standarbred, but they looked decent and lively enough.

                                        I think with tragedy & Amish funeral processions being big in the news, its probably a bad time to debate how the Amish treat their horses.

                                        Besides, if the Amish were looking at me, they'd probably look at my poor car and say, "She really abuses that thing... its a bit caved in at the sides and lame on all four wheels!"

                                        Comment

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