Monday 23 January 2012

Half-breeeeed, that's all I ever heard, Half-breeeeed, how I learned to hate the word

Alright, alright.. back to the story.

And so I got home from WXYZ, (mercifully not a 12 hour drive!), washed the mud off of my boots, and went back to the drawing board.

Time to stop thinking of "good" and "bad" horses in big amorphous groups. I tried "CSH", "from a small breeder", "from a large breeder" - with zero success.  From now on, I would concentrate on evaluating each horse as an individual, and judge each one on its own nutty baggage.

What were my criteria again?
- Horse with potential to be competitive at upper levels (four good feet, etc, etc)
- Modern, leggy - no cocktail weenies (more on this later)
- Flog free temperament - a.k.a "hot"
- Smaller in stature
- Cheap

I was pretty stuck on the fact that the horse have one sexy, impressive "dressage-y" parental unit - most likely the sire.  However... hot dressage-y dam would be perfectly fine too, but what are the chances of that - who would breed a smoking hot elite mare to some backyard unproven stallion?

(Oh wait, I forgot about the whole contingent of insane cremello people, who  for some crazy-assed reason do this, and for even crazier-assed reasons, seem to make a go of it...there is an entire post to rant on about here for sure).

And so, I hit the bulletin boards again.. exactly what were the reportedly good choices in the dam department that might make it to higher levels of dressage, without the price tag associated with full WB....?

The obvious category here that actually does make sense are the Iberian horses.  I have known and ridden a few now, including a PSG stallion who was absolutely georgeous, and I must say I am a fan - the nice ones really are nice.  However, due to the Fabio romance novel factor, even the totally crappy ones with the double jointed paddle knees that look like flagella coming down centreline are more expensive than a similarly talented warmbloods.   So this was out of the question for me.

Curmudgeon, I still don't get it.  The obvious choice is a TBx.  Why do you hate TBs so much, what is your problem? Did you seriously eliminate them from contention all together?

No, no....I did not avoid TB crosses, not at all.

But the problem here is that decent TBxWB’s are generally marketed as hunters – which adds $$$ to their price tag for no particular reason related to athletic ability.  And the ones I saw WERE hunters – all-round flat boring movers, definitely not worthy of the upper price bracket to me.  The other issue is that they tended to be bigger than what I hoped to buy; since everyone wants their hunter to be 17hh so that it can safely clear the massive 3’ fences that the average child or adult amateur owner will be soaring over.

The only breeds I eliminated from contention “just because” were the hard core rainbow farter breeds, and colours or crosses thereof – things like Friesians, Canadian horses, and anything with flowing hair and/or described by a word ending in an “o” (palomino, tobiano, sabino, Art Deco = owner weirdo). I know, I know...some are very nice.  Maybe I missed out on a real gem here due to my fear of nutbars. I was willing to take that risk.

Don't you want to comb me, baby?

So, eliminating all of this – I found 3 breeds that kept cropping up in discussions of good options for warmblood crosses:

Arabs, Morgans, and Saddlebreds.  I am not saying this was right or wrong, but that's where I headed...


  1. You are impressed I actually found a picture of Cher riding a rainibow farter, aren't you.

  2. Wrong.

    I'll save you the agony of looking.

    Wrong, repeat this to yourself until it sinks in. LOL


    1. What? You mean breeds that are meant to hold their head up with a hollow back to look fancy aren't good dressage prospects? (Says the lady attempting to do dressage on a half-Friesian that remembers his carriage horse heritage all too well.)

  3. Wowzers.

    Way off base. Maybe you'll be able to join all those proud "off-breed" people at that bulletin board - you know, the ones that are proud to do dressage with those poor horses that were not bred for it.

    I'm shocked that you would even think that this is a good idea.... you would be better off with a Fjord!

  4. Funny story about Art Deco; I am the current owner of an Art Deco great-grandaughter whose parents are half-siblings. The grandson, ungelded for no reason, was put in field board with his sister, also for no reason. They shared a father who was Art Deco x Misty Blue Dream...a Saddlebred. My barn manager ended up with these horses and Flecha, the product of this unholy union, and then asked her if I wanted to adopt her. I said...yes?

    Despite her questionable heritage, my hillbilly filly is sound, fairly well put together, a nice mover and remarkably sane (this may be because she's a little bit simple). She is also chestnut. Just goes to show: sometimes useful creatures CAN rise from the ashes of idiotic breeding decisions.

    On another note, apparently poor Art Deco was bred to everything, including donkeys. I guess I could have done a lot worse.


    1. Misty Blue Dream is by a saddlebred stallion (Vanity's Blue Flame) that I knew and worked with personally. He was a 16.2h, solid, old-style, big-boned ASB stud with a FABULOUS temperment and big lofty, love, loved him. Small world...

  5. Ironically, I answered an ad on EMG - free saddle time for an experienced rider for a green horse - sounded like a good way to blow Tuesday nights.

    When I got there - yep, he is a palomino TB! What are the chances. And born and bred at a farm that stands a variety of cremello-y, Art Deco-y stallions.

    My alarm bells went off, but I am going to give it a go anyways, he is kind of cute. Maybe he will help me to overcome my phobias.