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Best Advice Quarter Horse Stallion

author
David Lawrence
• Wednesday, 28 October, 2020
• 10 min read

Keep in mind that sometimes horses from a racing bloodline may actually excel as other events, like cutting or rodeo, and vice versa. The Driftwood bloodline began all the way back in 1932 with a stunning bay stallion named Speedy.

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Contents

True to his name, Speedy became a successful match race winner at a young age. Years later, when he was purchased by a new owner and registered with the American QuarterHorse Association (Aqua), Speedy’s name was changed to the now famous Driftwood.

He became known as a tried and true sire to produce quick, even-tempered Quarter Horses that excelled in the rodeo world. From barrel racing to roping, the Driftwood bloodline continues to produce quality, successful horses that dominate the competition.

Originally registered as Appendix based on his lineage, Go Man Go was bred to be a racehorse. A cross between a Thoroughbred stallion and a mare registered as Appendix, the colt was not considered a true QuarterHorse at the time he was born.

After years of fighting and determination by his owners, this gorgeous roan horse was added to the main Aqua registry largely thanks to the stunning features of his first offspring. He was finally officially considered an American QuarterHorse, and he would go on to sire countless race champions including Duplicate Copy and Hustling Man.

He is well-known in the racing world and to obtain a horse that possesses this lineage certainly increases the likelihood of succeed on the racetrack. Born in 1961, Two Eyed Jacks was a stocky sorrel stallion whose lineage can be traced back to Joe Hancock, another popular QuarterHorse bloodline.

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Today, Two Eyed Jacks holds the top position in the all-time leading sires of Aqua Champion horses. A dominating force in the cutting horse industry, the Peppy San Badger line is arguably the bestQuarterhorse bloodline in the discipline.

Suffering from distemper as a colt, Peppy San Badger’s future did not look good. In his lifetime, Little Peppy sired an impressive 2,325 American Quarter horse foals who combined would earn over $25 million.

A chestnut QuarterHorsestallion born in 1956, Doc Bar was originally meant to be racehorse, but his true potential lay in halter events. While he struggled on the racetrack, Doc Bar excelled in halter events, winning an astonishing 9 grand championships in only 15 shows.

Beyond that, Quarter Horses today with the Doc Bar bloodline tend to be calm, easily trainable and full of potential in a variety of sports and uses. There is no question, one of the bestQuarterHorse bloodlines for ranch work and cattle wrangling is Doc Bar.

Born from a half-Percheron mare, Joe Hancock, the horse, did not fit the ‘desired’ Quarter horse standards of 1923. He would go on to sire numerous well-built Quarter Horses with calm demeanor as well as marked abilities inside and outside the arena.

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His offspring include many successful roping horses such as Red Man and Roan Hancock, the latter of which was a favorite of famous ropers Shoat Webster and Everett Shaw. If you are looking for a successful roping horse, look no further than a lineage that includes Joe Hancock and his infamous bloodline.

Proper training and adequate riders can often deter a Hancock horse that displays a penchant for bucking if you happen to come across one. While not every single horse will have an exceptional downline, there are many that continue to impress and dominate their competition.

The truth is, there are a lot of excellent bloodlines in the QuarterHorse breed, but Driftwood, Doc Bar, Go Man Go, Peppy San Badger, Joe Hancock and Two Eyed Jack rank at the top of their respective fields. These bloodlines withstand the test of time and their descendants continue to represent them as the best of the American QuarterHorse breed.

With the quantity of top-level sires available in the Western performance horse industry today, it’s not an easy feat. The 2019 Equidistant Five-Year Stallion Statistics were created to give credit where it is due among the leading sires in the industry.

Veterinarians and breeding managers generally attribute the escalated behavior seen in stallions to increased testosterone levels. Of course, there are some exceptionally tractable stallions that are either born with calm dispositions or have been very well-trained and maintained.

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But given the “nature of the beast,” personality conflicts between horses and humans tend to be amplified when a stallion is involved. The demands a stallion can make on his owner's time, patience and pocketbook can be overwhelming.

Dr. Chris Crowe, director of veterinary services and breeding manager at Babcock Ranch in Gainesville, Texas, has worked with stallions for more than 25 years. It just means, as Crowe explains it, that you “need to know the warning signs of an angry or irritated horse.

When you're standing with a halter and lead rope, the ability of the horse to turn his head and bite is a hard thing to counteract-and it hurts!” According to Karina Lewis, a trainer with a master's degree in psychology, experience with horses is only one advantage when considering owning a stallion.

In her opinion, novice owners tend to move more slowly and carefully because their primary motive is for the success of themselves and the stallion. She encourages potential stallion owners to look to knowledgeable resources for help, including skilled professionals.

“Anyone can get along well with a stallion,” Lewis says, “if they have an open mind for knowledge, are willing to network, and step outside themselves to find solutions.” Lewis encourages anyone considering stallion ownership to look at their personal relationships and patterns as indicators of whether they will be good candidates.

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Author and renowned horse expert Dr. Jim McCall adds that if the stallion isn't turned out into a pasture with a band of mares, a great deal of time can go into just managing a breeding program. “The three strands of wire that held the kids' pony won't work for a stallion,” laughs Dr. Crowe.

Stalls should be tall enough that the stallion can't get his jaw over the top of the side when standing on his hind legs. The safest fence is a tight woven mesh with a wooden, metal or vinyl sight barrier along the top-tall enough to reach the base of the horse's neck.

Davis explains that horses are herd animals and are socially designed to need companions. As such, stallion ownership may also mean that you should have another horse, probably a calm gelding, or perhaps a goat as a companion.

But be sure to keep an eye on the stallion and his buddy, so that a cranky stud doesn't abuse the companion animal. In the event that a stallion must be castrated or sold, Karina Lewis cautions against feelings of failure.

Examine whether it was a decision that caters to the benefit and welfare of the stallion and that they made an effort based on their best capabilities. Establishing Respect Crowe cautions that many stallions are constantly testing their boundaries.

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Dr. Jim McCall believes this is where both novice and experienced horsemen often make critical mistakes. McCall suggests that one way to discipline a stallion is simply to make a loud noise.

A good example is the popping sound of a cupped hand striking the neck or shoulder. She warns that there may be occasions when a person has to take defensive action in response to a stallion's aggressive move, such as delivering a blunt blow with a closed fist to the neck, chest, shoulder or buttock.

Crowe also believes that no discipline should occur more than three seconds after the offense, and the horse's eyes, ears and face are strictly off-limits. “Discipline has to be quick, firm, clear and appropriate,” Crowe explains, and notes that whipping and kicking are never the correct responses.

Constantly slapping at a horse and jerking on a lead chain are not only ineffective, they can be downright dangerous, provoking the stallion to lash out in frustration. John Lyons has never been an advocate of using a chain and suggests using a snaffle bit instead when leading a stallion that may be feeling full of himself.

Crowe feels some stallions do respect the use of a chain with a halter as an extra measure of restraint, but it must be used judiciously. Never jerk the chain, which could cause an instant, extreme reaction such as head flinging, rearing or striking.

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But nurture, as much as nature, can influence a stallion's attitudes and behavior, which is why handling and training are so important. From an early age, a colt must be taught manners and learn where he fits into the horse -human hierarchy.

Many people get into trouble with stallions because they take an overly aggressive, “show him who's boss” approach. While rambunctious colts must learn to respect human boundaries, John Lyons insists that establishing a good working relationship with a stallion requires intelligent handling rather than force.

According to John, the key is to put the horse's mind and body to work in fair and fruitful ways. By getting small, consistent acts of obedience (hips over, head down, move your feet, accept the bit, etc.

Toward that goal, it helps to know some basic things about stallion behavior and development: • Sexual play is common even in very young colts, but some youngsters are actually capable of breeding mares prior to their first birthdays.

• Stallions tend to have large reserves of energy and very active minds, so plan to devote extra time and patience to training and exercise. • Colts tend to be mouthy by nature, so be prepared to implement handling practices that discourage nipping or biting, such as paying extra attention to the horse's head, and positioning yourself out of grabbing range.

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While a stallion may not be able to live among a group, he should reside within seeing and calling distance to other horses in a safe, secure environment. • Young stallions who may be gentle and easy to handle as 2- and 3-year-olds may become more dominant and harder to control as they mature sexually and socially.

• With proper training and conditioning, stallions readily learn to recognize when it's okay to exhibit breeding behavior and when it's time to be a gentleman. If a stallion is mean, aggressive or hard to handle, keeping him as a breeding horse is probably not the right decision.

Because of the driving force of their nature, care and caution must be exerted whenever and wherever a stallion is housed, turned out, or taken out on the trail or for an event. So consider the decision carefully before you decide to buy a stallion or leave your colt a stud.

Author and horseman Dr. Jim McCall is a nationally recognized expert on horse behavior, training and management. He has raised more than 100 stallions and firmly believes that, even before you breed a mare, you should know something about how the potential colts will turn out.

If a young horse meets the first two criteria, an owner can probably leave a colt intact until he reaches an age where his disposition is more obvious. Once all of these criteria have been met and you feel you have an exceptional individual worthy of passing on his genetics, you must then decide if you are breeding for profit or pleasure.

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If your objective is to make a profit, your next step is to decide on a stud fee based on the stallion's economic value. Most breed associations and journals are very good at telling how many stallions are reporting, how many mares are bred, and how many live foals are produced.

“The market has changed so much in the last 10 years due to embryo transfers, frozen and shipped semen,” McCall notes. Aside from being consistent in your own training methods, her observations reveal that the key to producing a well-behaved adult stallion can be as simple as letting the herd do all the work for you.

Much of Davis' research has been on mixed group herds with a stallion, several mares, and their foals. “ In the herd, Davis believes that the natural play that occurs among young horses provides the essential building blocks for future behavior.

Ideally, Davis would like to see all horses raised in mixed colt and filly groups up to about 9 months of age. Davis feels serious behavioral problems can occur when colts are weaned at 4 months of age and kept isolated from their own species.

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Sources
1 www.studbook.org.au - https://www.studbook.org.au/RulesAndServices.aspx
2 sconevetdynasty.com.au - https://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australias-first-stud-book/
3 sconevetdynasty.com.au - https://sconevetdynasty.com.au/history-of-the-australian-stud-book-parts-i-and-ii/