The draft breeds have been compromised by poor breeding standards though...The Shires and the Clydesdales are a prime example from them being so inbred that they have been crossing the two breeds to get away from too much inbreeding...inbreeding causes genetic mutations such as JEB (mostly known in the Belgians and American Saddlebreds), HERDA, HYPP...and so on. The breeds are WEAK and don't last as long as Belgians or Percherons, usually taken off the harness by the time they are 10 because of their Height and joint problems. They have also developed heart conditions they are born with...A freind of mine is a top breeder of Clydes in Canada and is in fear of the developing problem his favorite breed is heading for with so many breeding "Fashion" because of the new trend for riding drafts...This is going to be detremental to the breed.
Some ten years ago The Belgain breed was almost dictated by an Amish family who sold and then bought back one of their colts at action for a hefty sum of money so they could say.."Looky! He was bought for Ex amount ..so he must be perfect!" Thankgoodness the stallion died in a freak pasture accident and wasn't bred but to only a few mares. He would have made a better gelding than a stallion anyway as he was to small boned. He wouldn't have shown well either.. But people look at the fact he must be what the standard should be because of the money that was spent on him..Similar to what FARCEUR set back at the turn of the last century.Politics in horse showing is nothing new and it goes on all the time..Its also set by breeders with big money.
Look what happened to the Morgan horse because someone liked baby doll heads of arabs and thought it looked good on a Morgan..The posty legs of Impressive who was bred to run but couldn't so he set the standard for halter Quarters..bet non of those Halter horses could stand up to regular ranch work because of their poor conformation for work...Or the fact that some still are carriers for HYPP. Their conformation for work is junk. The standard for Fjords were changed also after WWII because of the decline in the population...there are two lines of Fjords...one you don't want..Most of them were shipped to America and the Americans like the small non drafty look of the cross out..Sorry but I wouldn't buy a Fjord without imported parents with strong Grabb, King Harald, or Rudarin lines..I lost my boy a few years ago who had these old lines..
Standards are what sells, not what is good for the breed..Just ask any boxer who nose is bred back so far into his nasal cavity that he can't breath anymore..but Hey its "cute" and fashionable.
The only two draft breeds I would have are Percherons or Belgians because there are many to choose from from different breeding lines..I would not however buy one that does not have the old line of breeding. I want mine to last 30 years not fall apart with hips and joint problems in their late teens.I also like mine muscled up and kept at a pulling weight rather than thin and kept like a riding horse.Its my preference and I'm not telling others what to do. I just don't understand why people want to make a Mac truck into a pick-up truck because they ride better...