What breed of horse do you think faces the greatest prejudice?

14 Aug

“Would you recommend an Arabian gelding if my not-so-experienced family members and friends are going to ride it?”-Anna

This is a very short question for a big subject. The shortest answer I can give you would be: I wouldn’t exclude OR include a horse purely on the breed.What breed of horse do you think face the greatest prejudice?


Sometimes the problem with really short questions is that it leaves more room for the reader to ‘read into’ the question. For example, in this question it would seem that Arabians are being put into the questionable category as far as safety for beginners. I have met Arabians that were the most gentle, kind and well trained horse that you could ask for. I have also seen some that were not for beginners. Is this because of the training? At least part of it is. Is it because that horse is naturally ‘hotter’…that could be true also.

It is possible to find ‘hot’ horses in pretty much any breed…and in people too. Have you ever met a person who just had to be busy? Each horse and each person has their strengths and their weaknesses. Don’t let preconceived notions about what certain breeds are make your decision. Judge each one on his own merit.

I once saw a draft horse that was ‘hot’ i.e.-prancy, excitable, etc. I wasn’t around the horse and owner for a long time, but it appeared that the horse was well cared for, trained and had no history of abuse or mistreatment. The owner said they had always owned the horse and they also said the horse had always been very perky. My brain had been trained to think that all draft horses were lazy….another preconceived notion. Sometimes these notions also lead to breed prejudice and that is NOT a good thing.

Just think about all of the Thoroughbreds, Arabians and other breeds that people have preconceived notions about. What breeds do you think face the greatest prejudice? Do you think it is justified or unjustified? What is your happiest story about a horse that didn’t fit the standard preconceived notion about that breed?


Posted by on August 14, 2014 in Controversial, Thought provoking


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69 responses to “What breed of horse do you think faces the greatest prejudice?

  1. Kim Van Drisse

    August 14, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Appaloosa! People think they are dumb, stubborn, plate footed, poor colored, ugly headed and rat tailed…… Sure, there are a few that met the ugly stick when they were born, but it happens in all breeds.

    • dana h.

      August 15, 2014 at 7:51 am

      You said it before I could – in exactly the same words! I will add that our one and only appaloosa is/was a 4H show horse for a then 10 year old little girl. He was 5 months old at the time of purchase. For most horses this would be a big no no putting such a young horse and child together but he bonded to her like a large dog! We broke him to ride at age 3 but just about all of the pictures are of her just sitting on him with no saddle, maybe a halter and her phone in her hand! He’s 13 now and still the same unflappable, loving guy he was to my daughter. Our farrier will forever state”I hate apps but man -i like this one a lot”! Ha.

  2. nokotadreamer

    August 14, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    Mustangs! Supposedly they are ugly, scrawny, stubborn, undersized broomtails, when in reality they are some of the greatest horses out there!!

    • Jenni Hitt

      August 15, 2014 at 12:08 am

      I have a mustang- he’s fantastic! Been that way since he came to us at 4. I love him! He’s been healthier and easier to keep than my Ottb and my qh.

  3. Bekki Morrison

    August 14, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    I currently own a thoroughbred and I was so nervous when we first got him. But he truly is the kindest, most gentle and patient animal I have ever met. And he’s so smart too. I’d heard that thoroughbreds are “hot” breeds, and, although he has very small spurts of dancing and kicking up his heels, he is just so laid back and mellow. I can’t imagine owning a better horse for me and my family.

  4. Deb Jones

    August 14, 2014 at 7:47 pm

    I am a 65 year old new widow who has never owned a horse, or been raised with any. I live above the wild and scenic Rogue River in the woods of Southern Oregon, in a small house surrounded by BLM land with wood-cutters trails and ravines. I purchased a 17yr old ex-search and rescue trained Arabian gelding 6 months ago, and though we went through the ‘anti-honeymoon’ period for about 2 months, we are now IN the honeymoon, and I love him dearly. We ‘get’ each other. I’m kind of a wide-eyed squirrel of a woman, retired school district employee, and he’s a sensitive aware boy, and we both need a lot of affirmation. Trail rides are a ‘noticing walk’ as he needs to be all about the next turn of the path…and he’s wonderful about ‘spooking in place’ and asking a question if he’s worried. I usually defer to his opinion, unless I want to go forward, no ifs, ands or buts…just being patient, and using a one-time turn around with lots of pats and ‘that’s okay, boy’s…he goes bravely through whatever. My riding training has been with 4 lessons, and a couple of trips with friends on their horses. My sweet big grey is in my pocket, in my hand, and reads my mind much of the time, and I love him dearly.
    He also loads easily, never worn shoes (nickers ‘hello’ at the farrier), doesn’t have to be ‘caught’, and we ride with a small Australian endurance saddle with only a one ‘click-only’ cinch, and a small fleece pad, and he can be ridden bitless. We share lots of veggie and fruit snacks because he lives with me just out the back door. Yes, he’s a little jealous of the dog, and doesn’t tie too long anywhere because he wants to be with me, but…..what’s not to like?

  5. Katie O'Brien

    August 14, 2014 at 7:47 pm

    In southern Alberta it is absolutely the Arabian. They face a huge prejudice here and it is very sweet when the Arabs win in any Compitition.

  6. Brenda

    August 14, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    In Australia its Standardbreds (trotters). In the hacking ring, as soon as the judges see brand on the neck they don’t even consider it.

    • Cindae WIlson

      August 15, 2014 at 9:15 am

      so sad to

    • Cindae Wilson

      August 15, 2014 at 9:20 am

      So sad to hear that Standardbreds are so poorly thought of….my first off the track Standardbred is a big boned 16+ hand horse that is often mistaken for a “warm blood”, he has an amazing canter; as well as being capable of a slow trot, working trot and strong trot when I’m driving him; it just takes a bit of work to keep him collected. I am so impressed with him that I just adopted my second Standardbred, he’s a bit smaller, but handsome and athletic and watching him in the pasture, I’m guessing his canter will be devine, as well.

  7. Diana Lynn Burroughs

    August 14, 2014 at 7:55 pm

    Oh, the App, poor things. & Not so; each horse can be the greatest or a terror.

    In the 70’s, one of the best heading horses on the road was 1/2 Percheron & 1/2 quarter horse. …

    The 2nd best barrel horse I owned & trained in 30 years; and I rode him in a Springsteen snaffle. Hubby, former bronk rider, ranch hand for Bunkie Hunt, semi-pro team roper – – would NOT ride this horse. Would Not handle th Big Bad John, if he could get out of it.

    To me, all breeds, all types, all disciplines doesn’t really matter. They are horses. Some bloodlines furnish a clue. The rest is 1st that horse & 2nd how it was treated & trained.

  8. Nikki B

    August 14, 2014 at 7:55 pm

    I have two contradictions with my horses. I have the most laid back thoroughbred (ex racehorse) on the planet. I’d let my children ride him if he wasn’t 16.2hh and then we have a 12hh shetland cross welsh. She can be sweet as can be and then turn into a bucking bronco when she decides she’s had enough of being ridden – split second change of attitude. Sometimes I think they’d be safer on the big fella!! I don’t believe any breed of horse are good or bad they are all individuals.

  9. Terry Casson

    August 14, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    I agree about the Mustang, as they are being slowly put into extinction. The reason for this is greed. The BLM thinks there is no reason for their wildness and want the land for cattle and natural resources. $$$$ makes the world go around these days.

    • Jackie

      August 15, 2014 at 8:21 am

      Terry so true and so sad. Is there any going back to values first? Thank God for horses they help use stay focus and real.

    • Kate

      August 15, 2014 at 12:49 pm

      Actually, the horses must be rounded up for their health as well. Just think of thousands of horses out there with little food and water. Having a ton of horses roaming would make the food become scarcer. Besides, how else would we be able to adopt these beautiful animals?

      • nokotadreamer

        August 15, 2014 at 3:48 pm

        Katie, there are much better methods of dealing with population control than the roundups, which are *incredibly* violent these days. 3 or more horses in 20 die from heat exhaustion, dehydration, broken necks/limbs, young horses run so hard their hooves fall off, foals hog-tied and left in the desert to die or intentionally separated from their mothers so they die of malnutrition…
        As far as I can tell, the BLM no longer has the mustang’s health in mind at all. It didn’t used to be that way, but it sure is now.

      • Rebecca S. Thalacker

        August 16, 2014 at 4:21 pm

        Not to mention the issues caused by feral animals on areas that they are not native to. Horses are not wild, they are feral and just like other feral animals that are in habitats that are not natural, from pigs to goats to Snakes to birds, even cats and dogs, they need to be removed before they cause even more devastation to the native species of plants and animals. Obviously people perpetuating the problem of feral animals need to be harshly punished

      • Vickie McClintock

        August 22, 2014 at 9:57 am

        Horses have been wild in this country for hundreds of years. They are not responsible for damaging environments as much as the domestic cattle and sheep that are allowed to overgraze on public lands like a swarm of locusts destroying everything in their paths. Scientific studies have shown that because horses move from area to area to graze, and their digestive systems do not completely digest the seeds that they consume like cattle do, that they actually help to reseed rangeland. Their manure acts as fertilizer. They do not produce methane as a byproduct of their digestion. In other words, they are beneficial to their environments. They have lived in relative peace and harmony with all other wildlife for hundreds of years. They are not feral. There are fossil records of horses in North America that predate humans here, as well as petroglyphic evidence of horses here with humans hundreds of years ago. So just how long does an animal need to live in the wild before it is considered wild. There are populations of wild horses in many countries, including Africa. By your definition, all humans in the United States, other than American Indians, are feral. While it is true that some people let loose their domestic horses when they can no longer care for them, and these domestic horses become feral, the wild horses like the mustangs are indeed wild. They are just as wild as the deer and elk and wolves and bears and cougars, etc. that inhabit the same environments. Unfortunately the wild horses, like many other species of wild animals, are threatened by man. Welfare ranchers, sport hunters, the oil and mineral industries, are just a few who are working to remove all wild horses from public lands to make money off of these lands (at taxpayer expense). But they are also removing much of the other wildlife on these lands. Deer are overpopulated in many areas because man has removed their natural predators, like wolves, which are wild. Just because humans own domestic horses does not mean that other horses are not wild. Humans also own domestic rabbits and dogs. But there are wild rabbits and dogs also. It is time to stop perpetuating the myth that there are no wild horses. The great majority of horses in the wild are indeed wild, not feral!

      • Jessica

        September 7, 2014 at 7:53 am

        Feral animals ARE wild. 😉 The definition of feral is an animal living in the wild (check), descended from domesticated individuals (check). It appears our beloved mustangs are feral despite what they say about horses being indigenous to the US. Of course those died out some 10,000 years ago…

  10. johanna

    August 14, 2014 at 8:05 pm

    well, the equines i really learned the most from and found the most forgiving were Shetland ponies! surprise! everyone has always groaned with lots of negatives when i told them who i was riding..

    but, i trained the one i rode to do 3.5 ft jumps, all kinds of tricks, rearing, sliding short stop (on grass, anywhere), prancing, etc and he had the most wonderful disposition–of course, this was after i had learned what i needed to in order to have a great working relationship with him…i was only 8 years old–he trained me to train him, not the other way around LOL!

    there are a ton of prejudices in the dog world as well. i applaud your statements on never, ever judging by breed, and taking each individual on its own merits. my american pitbull terriers are the most amazing working and personal dogs i have ever had, with truly thoughtful, large-hearted, motivated, and powerfully joyful dispositions. and everyone knows what kinds of prejudices have festered in that arena…

    As a general practice vet, and having done a lot of work at animal shelters as well, i can tell you that breed prejudices are false and super damaging– to the public, the handlers, as well as the animal– and each individual truly is unique, irrespective of breed.

  11. kerro

    August 14, 2014 at 8:08 pm

    Arabians, definitely which is my favorite breed of horse to begin with. My other favorites are Mustangs, Morgans, and Rocky Mountain Horses. Though I love all horses. My mentor said “You just love them all huh?” well what’s not to love? They’re all beautiful and intelligent creatures. But Arabians seem to have a bad reputation everywhere. Even in the Midwest where I grew up. Here’s the thing, I think they’re bad rep partially comes from the fact they’re considered “dumb halter horses.” Not my words, mind you. People don’t respect and appreciate every breed of horse out there. A horse is a horse. The breed makes no difference. Horses like people are individuals and should be treated as such. I also think that people buy Arabians for their looks and don’t take into account of just how intelligent they are. I’ve never in my life met a bad Arabian. I worked at a ranch where they bred sport horses (part Gypsy Vanner) and the person had two Arabian mares and it angered me to hear her talk down on them. They were the easiest mares to work with, and when imprinting their foals they were the only mares that did not make a fuss. And there were other breeds there: Thoroughbreds, Morgans, Mustangs, Quarter Horses, Shires, and Clydesdales. Anyways… saying mean things about Arabians is just like how people say mean things about Pit Bulls. It’s really all behind on how they are raised, treated, and trained. /End ranting/

  12. Liz

    August 14, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    Tennissee Walking Horses. I’ve heard numerous people say these horses are all show and good for nothing else except prancing around in the show ring.i myself have had 2 full blood walkers and 1 cross that could do just about the same as any other horse. The TWH I have right now barrel races runs polls ,trail rides,and can show. I’ve even been training dressage/reining with him. Breeds ,too many different breeds have had too many limits put on them as far as wat a breed can and cannot do. Mind you some horses just aren’t suited for some disciplines ,but it’s to that particular horse and not the breed itself.(and I’m not saying a mini should be ridden by a ful grown person…logically thats just not going to work)

  13. Karen

    August 14, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    I have to say the Standardbred in my opinion is treated with unbelievable prejudice. Many people think that they are only made to harness race and if that doesn’t work out then they are only good for slaughter. This is so untrue as we bought a 4 year old Standardbred who was on her way to slaughter moments before we got our hands on her. She is a wonderful and talented horse…extremely athletic although didn’t like pulling a cart.
    We have our mare doing some barrels and also doing some jumping. She’s also awesome at liberty. She’s a wonderful gift that we are so thankful for!

    • Marilyn Hutchings

      August 15, 2014 at 1:18 pm

      I do feel the Standardbred is very predjudiced as so many people think it is only for racing. They have been used for every discipline possible. No other breed can claim that distinction. Save a horse and rescue a Stadardbred.

  14. Alicia

    August 14, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    I wish I could show you how incredible this little 19 year old, sway-backed arabian is….given to us by a cousin, Chance has been on my farm now for two years and belongs to my daughter’s best friend. He has been the most incredible first-horse for her, teaching her how to show, game, do trail class, costume class, ride on the trails, and everything else you can imagine. He does everything with the most amazing disposition. Everything we have introduced him to, he has done safely, cheerfully, and well. He tries hard to do everything that is asked of him. He takes excellent care of his girl, and for that I believe he is priceless. I am a Quarter Horse gal, but I LOVE this Arab!!!

  15. Gayle L.Anderson

    August 14, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    We have a few different breeds that we have given a home to because they needed us and the only breed that gets “that look” from people is my beloved Arabs. I am always defending them. My mare is a bitch and I love her to death – we bonded when we met and I trust her enough to put someone who has never ridden before on her and she does amazing with them. My gelding does not get ridden due to psychological issues we are still working on but he is the most amazing boy on the ground – he takes emotionally distraught people and works his magic on them – it amazing to watch how much differently he acts with them than us. All our horses have their own personalities regardless of breed but I find with my Arabs that you have to stay a step ahead which is one of the reasons I love them – they make me think when I’m with them – but then a beginner comes over and they act like the quietest old plug you’ve even seen. I also feel a connection with them that I don’t with the others – they just seem older and wiser than the others. I have to say that they are the thinkers in our herd, along with our Alberta Wildie. ❤

  16. Kathy Mahan

    August 14, 2014 at 9:18 pm

    Mustangs. When I was first adopting, finding boarding was.. More challenging. When she was gentled and I was looking at trainers, so many ads actually said no mustangs. The whole reason I adopted a mustang, was that when I took my daughter and her friends to an adoption to see wild horses, this 2 Y/O filly amazed me. She was curious, and bold. She saw me looking under the other horses to read neck tags, and slowly moved forward to check me out. She let me touch her with one finger, and within minutes was following me along the front panel of the pen. I left but she haunted me. I just knew she could be an awesome horse. We did find a place to board her and rushed back the next evening as they were finishing up and adopted her. She is everything I imagined and more. It took awhile to find a trainer that I trusted with my girl. (It’s not like she could come home and tell me what happened each day) when she did get started under saddle, the trainer was giving walk/trot lessons on her after 30 days. This horse has the most incredible ethics and etiquette. She puts herself between the other horses and anything new and scary. She is our go to for the kids friends who have never, or rarely rode. Because of her, we now have 6 mustangs and just 2 other breeds. I met wonderful people because of her, made some good friends and have a whole mustang family because of the Mustang Heritage Foundation and the Extreme Mustang Makeovers. I named her Symphony Solstice because her life was changing, but honestly this mare changed my life far more then I can possibly measure.

  17. Vickie

    August 14, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    I bought a green broke 3 year old Arabian gelding for my 7 year old granddaughter, who was a beginner rider. I purchased the horse online, with only his picture and description provided by the young breeder. The lesson barn where she took her riding lessons, and where he was first boarded, thought I was crazy. He has grown up with my granddaughter and they are the best of friends. He has been a wonderful horse and seems to know when he has a young child on his back. I did have a great and patient trainer work with him for about 6 months before my granddaughter rode him. We love him! She says that she will never get rid of him because he is her “boyfriend”. She is now almost 15 and a very good rider. Arabians get a bad rap just like pit bulls.

    • Nardi Rowe

      August 15, 2014 at 7:15 am

      Arabians are the ones I know to be bad mouthed by the ignorant, prejudiced and people with poor horsemanship. I have been around Arabians for almost 50 years and have found them the most intelligent, kindest and tractable horse I’ve ever met. I know of someone with severe cerebral palsey who bred Arabians, taught foals to lead, broke in his youngsters to saddle and in harness and would go away for a week during his holidays from a sheltered workshop, camping by the road and hitching his mare to a trap and travelling around. The horses realised his disability and took it upon themselves to look after him. Amazing horse

  18. Christie

    August 14, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    Mustang especially BLM these horses are wonderful and super smart, nature did the fine tuning on genetics to make them hardy, resistant and quick learners in order to survive. I own one and she’s my once in a life time wouldn’t sell her for a million!

  19. Ray Corkum

    August 14, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    I think appaloosa,s were prejuged for years. As for Arabian horses I went to the nationals,three years ago and the reining was the only thing I liked,and I am not sure if I would ever go to watch another Arabian horse show, with combined events.

  20. Kathy Freymiller

    August 14, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    Mustangs. Because the reputation of the American ‘WILD’ Mustang is so bad. Preserving the more endangered Spanish Mustang or Colonial Spanish Horse has become very difficult and there are very few left.

  21. Maryellen bannister

    August 14, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    I believe it is the Arabian that is the most misunderstood. I own a 17 yr Arab mare. She is amazing. I would love to own another. She will do anything I ask and always takes care of me.

  22. Stacy

    August 14, 2014 at 10:54 pm

    I would say Appaloosas and Arabians.

  23. Charlesanna Corbett

    August 14, 2014 at 11:54 pm

    I see lots of comments on Arabians and some on Apps too. I had a wonderful Arab-App cross I rode for years. He was a stallion until he was 12. He could be ridden anywhere with any other horses and no problems. I had him from age 4 days until his death at nearly 29 years. He’s buried in his pasture.

  24. Pat Agnello

    August 15, 2014 at 12:06 am

    Mustangs. Too many people believe they are wild, untrainable and dangerous. They are great horses and no less trainable or more dangerous than any other domestic breed.

  25. Mary

    August 15, 2014 at 12:33 am

    I work at a barn for mentally and physically handicapped children and adults. We have an Arabian that started the program and has worked in the program for 15 years now. He is the best horse you could ask for. He never gets pushy, misbehaves, or gives anyone any problems. I put my new leaders with him and I trust him completely to teach them the ropes. (With my guidance of course.) We have a rider who has a major seizure disorder and will have at least one seizure a class and it’s usually a grand Mal seizure. He has a magnet that we have to run over his chest to stop the seizures so ofcourse we have to have a horse that is willing to take a rider who will slump over and be patient enough to stand still while we try to get the rider back up and feeling ok. Not only does he do this, but he will also predict when the seizures are going to happen. A lot of the time he will stop before the seizure even starts. He has had riders who have to lay down on his back while he walks, two riders ride so the one can hold the other rider up, and he does it all willingly everyday. He is always at the front of his stall or at the gate in the pasture because he knows what his job is and how important it is. If that’s not an amazing horse I don’t know what is. And wouldn’t you know, he’s an Arabian.

    • spisakrh

      August 21, 2014 at 10:26 am

      Awesome story and what a jewel you have for a horse. Keep up the great work.

  26. Debbie

    August 15, 2014 at 12:38 am

    I would say the standardbred! Not many people give them enough credit!

  27. Annie Gass

    August 15, 2014 at 12:40 am

    My beloved Appys have had a seemingly unshakable reputation for “crazy” as in “insanely dangerous” for all my 60+ years. And Thoroughbreds have had an equally bad one for being “too hot” and “no sense at all”.
    But I think I have now met THE breed for having an undeservedly GOOD reputation! In the West I met some very fine Morgan ranch horses, and some Morgan show horses – in several disciplines – who were about what I expected – pretty fair at anything they were asked to do, but seldom up to being really competitive with a horse especially bred for one specific job. Some were a bit “hot” but all were good with people and especially understanding of kids. So when I moved to Massachusetts I was really looking forward to meeting some really GOOD Morgans. And there may be some here. But at the shows what I see is Morgans who need three people to get them into the show ring – one in the saddle and two more hanging off the bridle. And they put kids onto these horses! (But only in the arena or show ring, never in the field or stable, much less on the road or trail!) It’s not only saddening, it’s frightening!
    Please, everybody, don’t write me letters defending the Morgans YOU know; I know there are some very good, kind, safe Morgans out there. Just come up here and watch the Morgan Nationals and tell me what you saw.

  28. Kristina fineout

    August 15, 2014 at 1:11 am

    I have a half shire half thouroughbred that does dressage and everyone thinks he would be heavy on his feet and/or forehand…but he’s light as a feather. he looks so oafy until he starts working. and when he’s clipped (his feathers) he looks like a huge thouroughbred!

  29. Barb

    August 15, 2014 at 1:18 am

    I was raised with a Shetland pony until the age of 11. Then my father bought me a great American show horse (half Arab , half saddlebred ). He was used for shows and jumped a lot. Pretty high strung. Well, as a farm kid I rode bareback mostly and never jumped anything than an old log. He had never been ridden out of an arena and was spooky as all get out. I broke my arm on him the first day I brought him home. I was 11 years old and had the passion!! So I rode with a cast. I rode him down busy roads, swam rivers , and traveled much further than my parents ever knew. In two years he was a horse that you could put anyone on. He adapted to all of my friends and how confident they were…. He was very gentle. Every year our local schools brought kindergarteners over for a field trip to our farm. We put 4 or 5 kids on him at a time and he loved it. Never dropped a one. He was born and bred to be a huge hot horse and I turned him into the most trusted horse anyone ever know. And I did it without knowing it. I just loved him and showed him what it wanted him to do and he did it. I’m older now and I look at the breed before I even think about buying a horse. And it’s not fair really. You would never think that this horse could go from being hot when you walked up to him and anticipating speed and wanting to go….to a horse that nickered in the field and walked to you with his head down waiting patiently for his bridle. I guess I was a better horsewoman than I thought. I realized as an adult that he trusted me and that’s what changed him. He was amazing!! A-hab 🙂

  30. Chelsey

    August 15, 2014 at 4:14 am

    I had an Arabian gelding I had received for free from a family who got him from sitting in a pasture for 3 years, and they were too scared to take him out and said he was not for beginners. He became my beginner lesson horse, and I found out after calling previous owners that he was shown in halter and at liberty (he knew some awesome cues for liberty!) and was a 4th level dressage horse in Pony Club, famous on our side of the state, and took tons of kids up through dressage, jumping, and eventing until he was 10. He also made one awesome western pleasure, hunter, Reiner, and cutter for me, as well as being my go-to trail mount. Unfortunately he just passed in April at 21 due to tumor(s) in his intestinal track. One of the most amazing horses I’ve ever ridden in my life. Still having a hard time not seeing or hearing him every time I walk out to the barn.

  31. Brenda Casteel

    August 15, 2014 at 7:06 am

    Yes Arabians are a hoter breed. But Arabians are smarter and more alert than most horses.Maybe not the best for a beginner. The older an Arabian gets the more they bond with you and will do anything for you.I have bred Arabians for many years and find that certain bloodlins posess certain trats. The same with other breeds.Always have someone knowledgable to help you find the right horse for you.This will keep you from making a big mistake and getting hurt.

  32. ashley

    August 15, 2014 at 9:42 am

    I have two breeds in my horse that have great prejudice her dad was an Arabian and her mama was a Welch. I’ve heard it all about both breeds. They all used to tell me” that liTtle white snot won’t take you anywhere get a real horse like a quarter horse” that was until they saw her work. Hehe she and I have been together since she was born almost twenty years and she has done and well show up about any quarter horse in the ring. She ropes cuts reins shows and is now my best lesson horse. They are all individuals and have their own beautiful minds. Breeds don’t determine much more than build and size everything else is who they decide to be and who you make each other when your together. 🙂

  33. Deanne Creviston

    August 15, 2014 at 10:36 am

    The Colonial Spanish Mustang. People consider them to be too small for any activity. People also don’t want to see the historical value of these horses, they have been in the US for 600 years. Yes there are ones that are harder to work with than others. I have a 4 year old gelding that let’s children crawl and hang all over him in the pasture. His sire, who hasn’t been ridden in years, just took a special needs child for his first ride.

  34. Kate

    August 15, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    I have an Arabian. He can be spooky sometimes but that only helps boost my confidence and skill more. But he is awesome all around!

    I love Mustangs too and hope to adopt one someday. We were just about to adopt one last month until our farrier told us his opinion about them. The mustang we were looking at was a yearling, had some good training already done, but no, ALL mustangs are wild and crazy, no matter how much training they have….

    • Kate

      August 15, 2014 at 1:11 pm

      I will add, my Arabian is my first horse and let me tell you, I was WAY inexperienced when we got him, he has taught me a bunch.

    • Vickie

      August 17, 2014 at 3:13 pm

      All mustangs are NOT wild and crazy. My grandkids took lessons on a mustang gelding that was adopted as a 3 year old stallion from the BLM. He was the most gentle, kindest, most forgiving horse I’ve ever seen. Little bitty kids could crawl under him and hang off of him and he wouldn’t do a thing. He never hurt anyone and was the easiest horse to ride. He was trained by a wonderful young man as his first training project. It is so wrong to perpetuate this myth about these horses. Of course, if people would just leave them wild and free on their rightful rangeland, no one would have to worry about whether they were crazy.

      • Kate

        August 17, 2014 at 4:22 pm

        It’s my dream to have several mustangs and go around showing off how wonderful they are. 😀 Maybe when I’m an adult, maybe very soon.

  35. Leta Wilson

    August 15, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    I have owned Arabs, Purebreds & Halfs for 35 years. I showed many years & trail ride in the mountains. All have been good & trustworthy. Because I live in Quarter horse country I get many negative responses when people hear I have Arabs. I love a good horse of any breed just happened to choose to own Arabs. Stacy thank you for your answer that was not prejudiced against any particular breed. I too have seen “hot” horses in lots of breeds.

  36. Heather

    August 15, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    Appaloosa for sure!! People either love them or hate them! And any horse with “Impressive” breeding.

  37. susan

    August 15, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    I have a draft cross. People expect him to be “dead”. He is very sensitive, sensible, notices everything, can get excited but stays under control. His canter is wonderful, has been described as floating on a comfy couch. I would give any horse breed consideration knowing that horses have different personalities but also considering the purpose for which I want the horse. Having the confirmation suitable for the activity is important.

  38. Lana

    August 15, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    I love all horse breeds. Have been around them since I was a child and rode my old grey mare bareback with just a halter around the Australian bush as a teen. I used to only own Quarter horses and TB but a few years back now I was in the market for a new saddle horse. My grey mare had died tragically and I hadn’t brought myself to get a new horse for more than a year. I’d been riding a friends Standard bred in the mean time when we hung out. After I got used to the gait I really enjoyed riding him and so thought “well why not” when I saw a Standard Bred filly 3 years old for sale. She was on her way to slaughter since no one had wanted her and I bought her for peanuts. I was met with skepticism and comments upon buying her from everyone who heard the word “Standard-bred” She couldn’t buck to save her life but her trot was sooo bouncy it would just about get rid of me but she was so easy to train and is now almost eleven and with a lot of work is a very smooth ride. I wouldn’t trade her for anything. She’s loyal, extremely trustworthy and gentle with a no nonsense air about her. It’s such a pity standies get such a bad rap because I’ve not met a bad one yet.

  39. Shelley Massey

    August 15, 2014 at 11:17 pm

    I have owned two purebred Arabians–one was a little hot, but also had very little handling before we bought him. Wonderful to ride. The second one was nick-named “Monster”. He was scared of many things the first few years I had him (I purchased him as a three year old when I was 13.) I showed him at local shows, gymkhanas, did extensive trail riding, and he was a SUPER reliable beginner and kids horse. I carried a dog across the river with him just short of a week prior to his passing at 29 years and a week…..oh did I mention that was bareback? I currently have a 24 year old Anglo-Arab (TB/Arabian) that I have had her entire life. She was a show horse for a few years. My son decided to use her as his rodeo horse (he thought she was faster than his old horse!). She also brought my niece into the rodeo and gymkhana world. When my son grew up, she was used by a brother and a sister for both boy and girl rodeo events….oh yea, and she is an awesome kid’s horse. Most recently she gently cared for a young man with a severe brain injury as we led him around our corral along with two other awesome horses I have. She has been a great babysitter for my 5 yr old Paint gelding this summer on his first two horse show trips. I love my Paints, but these Arabs all have rocked!

  40. Donna

    August 16, 2014 at 9:59 am

    I really think any breed can feel prejudice. There is a joke about how we start to look like our dogs after many years together. With our horses, I feel
    people tend to choose those that are a reflection of themselves and what they relate to and understand best. Breed prejudice depends on where you are. The quarter horse will be critiqued in a dressage ring because it doesn’t “fit”. While a TB will be the focal point of criticism running barrels.. Because he does not fit. Any horse that challenges the status quo will deal with prejudice.
    I have two Arabians. When I tell people this quite often I am met with a look of being sized up for a padded room somewhere. Why? Because I live in a region where quarter horses are the norm. Both of my boys have very different personalities.. My 21yo has been there and done it. He is my solid level headed rock of a horse. He is the “go to” horse for people wanting to learn. He is the old man “The Teacher”.
    My other boy.. Well, he is the comedian, the super affectionate in your lap if he could horse. He is also the one who has dumped me more times than I care to think about. So, he is also my teacher.
    I think people are quick to label an entire breed by a single horse they may have seen or known at some point. I adore my Arabians but have also spent a great deal time to get to know and understand them and what makes them tick. So, if I put my one in a western pleasure class he would be frowned upon only because he is not suited for this discipline. In other words “You can’t make a silk purse out of a sows ear” and those that try will be labeled.

  41. autumn

    August 16, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    The thoroughbred is the most stereotyped horse breed….they are actually very good animals.

  42. Kim Riggs

    August 16, 2014 at 5:39 pm

    OTTB. They are thought to be high strung and hard to handle. I have one that is more like a QH.

  43. Vickie

    August 17, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Kate and Rebecca need to learn about the history of the wild mustangs before pronouncing them feral and in need of being rounded up for their health. These horses have been wild in this country for hundreds of years, thus they are wild. Not feral. Left on the range in their natural habitats they are generally healthy, with mother nature providing population control. Of course, when they have to compete with sheep and cattle overgrazing public lands, then yes, they can face some problems with forage. But unlike livestock, the horses move around continuously and do not overgraze an area. And since many seeds pass through a horse relatively untouched, their manure helps to reseed the range. Livestock on the other hand process the seeds in their digestive systems to the point where they are destroyed when excreted. People who care about and monitor the wild horse herds can attest to their health. The wild horses need to be left alone as the 1971 Wild Horse and Burro Act (before the amendments by the BLM which stripped it of it’s intent) intended per popular vote of the American public.

    • nokotadreamer

      August 18, 2014 at 10:31 am

      there needs to be a like button 😉

  44. fluffyrider

    August 17, 2014 at 11:27 pm

    No such thing as a bad breed on a good horse.

    I own an Arab and have had more than a few echo a previous poster. “I don’t like Arabs, but I like yours’. I always tell nay sayers that the problem is you have to be smarter than the horse. LOL

    I own two Arabs, a QH and a Welsh pony. I think Standardbreds deserve more of a chance. People obviously have their preferences for a reason, but I think it’s sad when people get breed blind. I’d take a broken down plug if someone said it was the only horse I could own, because I love horses, period. Regardless of breed, pedigree or lack thereof.

    Even within breeds there’s prejudice. Egyptian Arabians are often looked down on by owners of Polish, Russian, Crabbet etc. Foundation QH owners/breeders tout the percentage of foundation breeding in their animals and scoff at Appendix or higher percentage of Tbred blood. Three Bars ring a bell to anyone? Silly folks.

  45. cindy

    August 19, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    As a result of growing up on Arabs, I immediately feel relaxed on and around them…and I seem to move with their gaits better than with others…could be just that our phisicality matches well, or even could be just in my head, whatever it is, it works!

  46. Bridget

    August 20, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    I was on a high school equestrian team and started with a small QH that was flighty and the only predictable thing about her was if she got loose she would run until she found cows and then stop. The majority of the riders on my equestrian team were AQHA and so I joined the state youth chapter. When I outgrew my QH the barn I rode at gave me a 13 year old TB I had been working with. He had problems with his right lead that resulted from both fear of punishment and lack of suppleness. I started taking him to equestrian team practice the following year and after a particularly bad practice the two adults that had encouraged me to join AQHA told me that he wasn’t worth the bullet to shoot him. The following week I was back with my TB and part way through practice I was at the short end of the arena watching one of the adult’s daughters on her QH do her pattern. I was sitting on my horse without my stirrups and the reins on his withers with him dozing in a patch of sun when the snow load on the metal roof let go and started crashing down, 5 horses around mine bolted, most of the QH and the horse in the pattern spooked. The rider dropped her split reins grabbed the horn and started screaming. Meanwhile my TB lifted his head, pricked his ears, looked around and went back to dozing.

    It all depends on the horse and the rider and how they get along. I’ve gotten a lot of grief from those people and their friends about my TB and as a result it’s left a bitter taste in my mouth about that region AQHA and I’ve never gone back to them.

  47. spisakrh

    August 21, 2014 at 10:00 am

    I owned, raised and training an AQHA gelding for 32 years. I have also showed, trained and own Arabians for over 30 years. I loved my quarter horse but he was a challenge and I loved him. I never liked Appaloosas, but my sisters Appy was a just dream to ride! Every horse is unique and training skills vary on how to interact with them. My favorite by far, is Arabians. They are versatile and just absolutely beautiful and such people horses. My pet peeve is when people say Arabians are “HOT”. They are not hot, they are smart and most people are not smart enough on how to train them. They need a gentle touch, they are trusting animals and need boundaries. My one mare won’t do anything unless she trust you. She is also the same mare that lets little kids hand paint her for birthday parties. If she was HOT I wouldn’t let 10 little 8 year olds walk all around her with wet paint on their hands touching her. All horses are beautiful and should be treated that way. My favorite memories are going to open shows to practice (mostly AQHA horses) and my Arabian would stand out. People would make comments about an Arabian in a western pleasure class. We don’t four beat around the ring, we have a nice flowing, and a forward moving gate with a loose rein, but not dragging on the ground. Trotting around the ring we were passing the Quarter horses. Head position upright and tucked, not behind the bit. Tail up, ears forward, covering ground. Never expected to place, didn’t care. I was working with my horse for other shows. Dam, I won the class! People didn’t see that coming, nor did I. Lesson learned a good ride and a good horse wins, period! Have to admit, I left the ring with my ribbon and a big smile. Similar experience on a pony. My little brother was 12 riding a beautiful grey grade small 13.2 pony. He was young and I was training him and the pony. I was not happy how my brother was handling the pony and we get into an argument if it was the pony or my brother. I was in my saddle seat clothes (riding my versatile Arabian in an open show in an “English class” were everyone was a hunter – I digress). I put on his cowboy hat and chaps over my saddle seat pants and rode that pony ( I was 18 put small enough to ride the large pony). I loved this pony, he was awesome and opinionated. I rode in that class, 28 horse, mostly quarter horses and my pony. Didn’t go in to win, but to prove a point to my brother the pony wasn’t the problem, it was how he was riding him that day. Guess what, this little grade pony won the class! Again, upset some trainers and owners with that little ol’ grade pony and messed up their points. An Appaloosa trainer was not happy with me when I won open Western Pleasure Div at the end of the season, with my Arabian mare, who I also showed saddle seat. She was an awesome Arabian mare that I had the privilege to show, western, saddle seat, drive and one show side saddle.

    Again, a good horse, is a good horse, regardless of breed or size.

  48. Jessi

    August 24, 2014 at 6:24 am

    I work at a therapeutic riding centre & we have a wide range of breeds but my 2 best horses are an Arab & a TB. I could go on forever with specific stories but lets just say that when I am asked what type of horse I am looking for I always say that we assess each horse on a horse by horse basis because you never know; that horse might just turn out to your next ‘best horse’.

  49. NIkki

    August 27, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    To me at least (and I’m probably biased because of my passion for the breed) the Thoroughbred is highly prejudiced. My first horse was/is a 16.3 blocky plain bay wrapper thoroughbred gelding who was as fast as he was spirited…for other people. For me, while he was still pretty spooky, he would do anything in the world and was extremely patient. When we first teamed together, I actually had no clue how to ride. He literally taught me the basics and fundamentals of riding a “difficult” horse. He taught me the valuable lesson of never giving in, even if you hit the ground, but he kept me safe in doing so. I was only eight at the time and was the size of a first grader, so he could have easily hurt me, but he chose not to. That’s the thing about thoroughbreds that i don’t think many people understand. Thoroughbreds generally aren’t mean spirited, crazy individuals that only pros can handle. Thoroughbreds can be rather tricky to figure out, but if you don’t try to micromanage their every move and enjoy their spirit, they can turn out to be one of the best mounts you will ever have. They have a heart for pleasing people to the best of their ability.

  50. Sandra Wright

    August 30, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    I think grade horses face the greatest prejudice. People seem to think that if a horse doesn’t have verifiable, purebred parentage that it is somehow less “good” and will somehow be less “useful”, etc. Since most of the horses going through the public auctions are grade (by virtue of having lost their papers along the way, if they ever had them) this results in a lot of good, useful, kind, sweet, smart, sound, healthy horses winding up shipped to slaughter houses or shot for carnivore meat. It seems a lot like the dog situation, where everyone wants to know what breed the dog is, when we all know that a good mutt is priceless. Mixed breeding often results in healthier, smarter animals with better temperaments. Personally, I would love to see you buy a grade horse at auction and train it, just to see how it would turn out. Of course, everyone would probably say “Well, Stacy Westfall could train anything and it would come out fine” but still, it would be nice to bring some attention to the amazing equine talent being wasted for want of a scrap of paper.

    • Vickie McClintock

      October 1, 2014 at 1:43 pm

      Good point, Sandra! I wholeheartedly agree. Every horse deserves to be given a chance. They are truly creatures of God and have a lot to offer and teach to us humans.

  51. Sydney

    October 1, 2014 at 12:26 am

    Appaloosas and haflingers! I hear that appy’s are stupid, lazy, stubborn, have terrible feet, poor attitudes etc. My 18 yr old appy (who I’ve had almost 10 years now…) is kind, sweet, in your pocket, easy going, and forward. He does have terrible feet though!! Haha. And a short tail. But he makes up for it being the horse I teach people who to lead, groom, handle ect. And he has a pretty head and neck! Lots of people tell me “Oh well, I don’t like appaloosas.” And I tell them to come meet Joe, and every single one of them has come to the dark side! Every horse is an individual, but the apps I’ve meet have all been awesome horses. I showed my trainers in hunters, and he cleaned up even though we weren’t another bay TB.
    As for haflingers, people say they can’t canter, they’re stubbon, lazy, only good for pulling, have terrible trots, untrustworthy. And…. then there’s mine. He’s easy, willing, level headed, unflappable, and he and I have done everything from Western Dressage, to hunters, to western pleasure, to gymkhana/barrels/poles and we’re always in the ribbons. Every judge with written tests have told me he’s “willing” or the “definition of willing”. Several have told me that in person. It’s all in the horse. There are bad apples in every breed, and sometimes they make people biased. I leased a 17hh saddlebred who was kind and sweet and mellow. Not normal adjectives for ASBs. I met a TB who tried to kill me, a quarter who tried to kill me, but it was just those horses. It all depends on the horse like it does with people!


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