Driving Quarter Horses? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 12:32 AM Thread Starter
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Driving Quarter Horses?

I couldn't find this subject on here but I have a probably stupid question. I recently got into an accident and practically shattered my knee, the doctors say it will probably be a year to two years at least for me to ride and even then there is no guarantee on that time frame.

I work and board with a trainer who drives and I learned from her ages ago how to drive, harness, all that jazz. I don't own a horse who could drive so I just made do harnessing for her, driving down the roads with her, driving just off and on in general to keep up my little skills and such. Anywho my main question is this:

Have any of you ever driven quarter horses?

Since I'm injured I asked my mom and my trainer if they could get my mare into a schedule and see if she would drive (it was on my list to do since she's nearing her 20s and I wanted to still keep her active when she's retired from riding) and I know that they both can do it and I trust this mare to meet all the qualifications a driving horse should. I just still want to be active before I'm cleared to ride (they said most likely I'll be cleared to drive a horse and cart before I'm cleared to ride).

She likes a loose rein though and I'm pretty sure that I can give her what she needs in the cart (still maintaining some contact and correctness though) I was just wondering if anyone else had ever driven a quarter horse like so. Another thing and this might just be another stupid and senseless question:

Have any of you ever driven without blinders?

I remember there was a horse once years ago that didn't tolerate blinders (didn't spook without them though) I just wondered if anybody had a horse that didn't tolerate them and if the drive with them how they got them use to it?

Just as a side note I would not be showing and would just be driving lightly around the farm to get my horsey fix. Thank you in advance for your response!
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post #2 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 08:18 AM
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Any sane horse can be driven, so you are in luck!! Sorry to hear about your knee.

In the show ring, QH are driven pretty much like they are ridden. No contact. There is a youtube video in one of the threads here in driving of an AQHA class.

I do not understand why anyone wants to drive without blinders, but plenty of people do, so you can. We train in open bridles, but they wear blinder bridles in the stall, bitted up, to learn to wear them, and give to the bit.

Good Luck!! Take care in your healing!
Nancy
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post #3 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 08:35 AM
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As what Greentree said, you can surely drive your QH, in fact, it is part of many shows that the AQHA sanctions and is becoming more popular. Many QH have a good sane and sound brain, so I bet your mare would love it.

I also don't understand why someone would want to drive without blinders but one wreck and they will understand why we use them. I would caution you to think long and hard before deciding not to.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kBD4mrSlH4

The above is Hot Diggity Joe at the 2008 AQHA World Show.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcmryQwf2u4

This one is more recent. I still have hopes that the AQHA will eventually get away from that low head, shuffling trot they have, those horses would look so much better in a more natural gait and movement.
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post #4 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 08:45 AM
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I just recently started driving my QH gelding. He took to it amazingly. I was in the cart driving him after only two sessions. It is a blast!
He didn't mind the blinders at all. I have a friend who is having trouble getting her horse (who's actually a QH too) used to the blinders. She said he's fine for the most part but he will not back up with the blinders on. He gets really nervous and actually started rearing. He'll back up fine without the blinders on. She has a few teams of Belgians that she drives and she always uses blinders on them so I think she's going to keep working with him until he gets used to the blinders. I have another friend who had the same problem with backing with the blinders on and she just opted to not use them. It's up to you! I personally just like the looks of blinders on a driving horse...my horse would be fine without them because he's super steady but I like them.
Good luck and I hope your surgery goes well! :)
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post #5 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for your responses/thoughts! I will be trying for her to wear blinders (I'm also very hesitant to drive a horse without them) I was just checking to see if anybody who had a problem horse with this got them used to it or if they drove without. I'm hoping and thinking that she'll have no problem with them but hey- always good to have a backup plan.

Grey Sorrel - I also hate the shuffling trot and such with a firey passion. Lol I'm glad to meet someone else who does!

Thank you all again and have a wonderful day! :)
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post #6 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 11:23 AM
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I don't know a whole whole lot about driving, but to answer your question yes you can drive your quarter horse! I actually learnt to drive with quarter horses, and one of them was very successful in the show ring. :)
Have fun with your mare, and I hope your knee gets healed up soon!

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post #7 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Incitatus32 View Post
Thank you for your responses/thoughts! I will be trying for her to wear blinders (I'm also very hesitant to drive a horse without them) I was just checking to see if anybody who had a problem horse with this got them used to it or if they drove without. I'm hoping and thinking that she'll have no problem with them but hey- always good to have a backup plan.

Grey Sorrel - I also hate the shuffling trot and such with a firey passion. Lol I'm glad to meet someone else who does!

Thank you all again and have a wonderful day! :)
lol absolutely don't like it and I have two registered QH that were taught that lower head carriage, I retrained them to hold their head up in a more natural position and have written several letters to AQHA urging them to get away from that. As we get new judges in, and the older stubborn one's retire, they are asking for a more natural head set, but we have to demand that this practice is done away with.
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post #8 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thank goodness someone is doing something to stop this!!! My mare also does the lower head carriage (not the AQHA severe, but even with her withers for the most part) but she brings it up when she feels the need to. This might sound bad but I just let her hold her head how she feels comfortable having it; she's older and doesn't show so I see no reason to get after her case because she's perfectly good with everything else, but by no means does she do the shuffle steps! Lol I'm not affiliated/registered with AQHA but I'm glad to see that people are taking steps to get rid of these practices. They're sickening in my opinion.

Btw is that percheron horse in your avatar yours? (sorry if I got the breed wrong) I have a love for draft horses so I couldn't help but notice! ;)
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post #9 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 03:40 PM
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Yes, that is my mare Smoke...she is my go to mare. I have her team mate who is also a Percheron...thank you for your kind comment.
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post #10 of 18 Old 07-30-2013, 03:44 PM
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I'm wanting MY QH to drive. I'm planning on saving up and shipping him to my Amish farrier for drive training next year. I want him to be safe enough for his 10yo son to drive before I get him back, again. Since he knows my horse I should get what I want!
Seriously, driving is so different from riding. IMHO, you have to trust your horse MORE when driving that when riding bc you sit full behind him when he pulls.
Any horse that trots can drive well and QH's make excellent driving horses. The trot pulls evenly, whereas the cart/carriage will jerk when the horse canters while driving.

A Jack and Three Queens, the latest book by James C. Dedman, Amazon.com
Hope that you fall in love with "Trot", like I did! http://www.horseforum.com/general-of...queens-617793/
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