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How do you define "good temperment"?

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  • How do you define "good temperment"?

    Yesterday I posted a thread asking for feedback on the temperament of the offspring of top dressage sires. I was assuming that most adult amateurs have the same thing in mind when they talk about good temperament.

    In one of the responses, the poster asked me to define what I mean by good temperament and pointed out that "good temperament" might mean any number of things, eager to please, forward, bomb-proof, etc.

    I figured this would make a good topic in itself that might be helpful to horse breeders, buyers, and stallion owners alike.

    For me, it means a horse that is a willing learner, eager to please, and is not inclined to take off in a mad bucking fit every time I put my foot in the stirrup. I don't want every ride to be a struggle and I don't want to be terrified to get on my horse.

    What does "good temperament" mean to you?
    Last edited by catzndogz22; Jan. 26, 2013, 11:58 AM. Reason: spelling correction

  • #2
    Also easy to handle on the ground. I looked at a mare two years ago which met all of your list, but she was wary of strangers, vets, etc; did not like to be groomed much, etc. It didn't seem to be lack of manners, just nerves or something.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


    • #3
      Originally posted by catzndogz22 View Post
      For me, it means a horse that is a willing learner, eager to please, and is not inclined to take off in a mad bucking fit every time I put my foot in the stirrup. I don't want every ride to be a struggle and I don't want to be terrified to get on my horse.

      What does "good temperament" mean to you?
      Everything you have said here, plus.......I find most people want a horse who "likes" people. The horse who seems to enjoy interacting with you, and is honest under saddle.
      Follow us on facebook - https://www.facebook.com/pages/River...ref=ts&fref=ts


      • #4
        I prefer my horses to be forward, eager to please, not spooky or not overly reactive. They should take everything in stride and look at the world with curiosity rather than worry. They can "take a joke" and be forgiving of mistakes. Easy going and personable (people oriented), inquisitive, kind and affectionate!
        Westbrook Farm


        • #5
          A horse with a good work ethic. One that wants to learn what I want to teach it and doesn't argue when I make suggestions. One that is not so hot and spooky that the an odd noise or bit of paper blowing across the arena will send it into a tizzy.
          co-author of
          Duel for the Crown: Affirmed, Alydar, and Racing's Greatest Rivalry


          • #6
            A horse that does not require an experienced, professional handler.

            Not spooky (over stupid crap, I can understand some things).

            Conscience and careful of/around people.

            Accepting of new things, situations, handlers.
            I LOVE my Chickens!


            • #7
              There are many components to temperament, in my opinion ...

              Rideable ... far more than being quiet or obedient under saddle, but also accepting of the aids in a soft manner and is quickly responsive to aids
              Character ... desire to please, stable minded
              Willingness to Work ... always willing to work, not resistant or resentful
              Trainability ... learns quickly and retains it

              There are some components that are learned and there are some that are natural to the horse. All of the above should be natural to the horse.


              • #8
                Originally posted by catzndogz22 View Post
                What does "good temperament" mean to you?
                Something I can ride.