I have a purebred Percheron gelding that is 11 years old. All black, 18 hands and 2200 lbs. He's a doll.
Just don't get caught up in the gentle giant crap. As I always say.. Gentle Giants are made NOT born.
Once you get a good foundation on them, they are just the most amazing horses ever. I can't imagine not always owning draft horses from here on out.
Some things to remember
1. Get Dr. Beth Valentine's book, Draft Horses an Owner's manual. It is THE draft horse bible.
2. If you are new to drafts, I'd recommend getting an older broke one.
3. Farriers can be hard to find, research carefully.
4. They do NOT eat more than your average size horse. Bigger horse doesn't equal more food (unless they are pulling horses or in some serious training like any horse that would need the calories for food).
5. It's recommended they are on a high fat diet no grain/no sugars.
6. Tack is getting easier to find now that more people ride them, if for some reason you get a horse under 5 don't invest in expensive tack! They'll likely grow out of it because they can grow until they are 8!
7. Keep in mind you might need a larger trailer depending on how big the horse is. There are different sizes of drafts - small, medium and super size.
8. They are NOT used just for driving. The friends I have don't drive at all but ride. So if you want a draft for a trail horse, a dressage horse, a jumping horse or whatever, they are quite talented!
I've been around each of the breeds and liked Percherons the best. They aren't necessarily as flashy as the big guys with more feathering but they just have that 'it' thing.
have fun looking!
Unless it weighs a ton... it's just a horse. Draft horse motto.