I'm writing a novel called "Hooved Angels". It's a human interest story. The story is actually about the life and times of a young girl named Cathy who grows up and inherits a horse farm as a young adult.
I currently have some questions concerning what is possible with horse breeding.
In the beginning of the story Cathy's grandmother runs a horse farm. The year is 1955. She breeds and raises draft horses. I haven't yet decided on the exact breed of draft horses.
I'm not too concerned with how Cathy's grandmother might go about breeding horses. My plot is quite differnet from that. In this story, the grandmother has several draft horse mares that are prime for breeding but have not yet been serviced. My first question,....
1. What time of year would horses most likely be bred, or can be bred?
I would like this event to happen in the spring or even late spring. Is that a reasonable time to breed horses?
Now for the second question,...
What's going to happen in the story is that several stud horses escape from a tractor trailer during transport. There is an accident, and these stud horses escape unharmed and run off to find grandma's horse farm to mingle with grandma's draft horses.
The idea is that these stud horses (which are also purebred horse but not draft horses), impregnate the draft horses. And this brings me to my second question.
2. How likely is it that these stud horses would naturally breed with the mares in this situation?
The draft horse mares are out to pasture. The small heard of studs that are prime for breeding are suddenly loose to mingle with the mares. Is it believable that these stud horses would naturally breed with these mares?
The idea behind all of this is that the offspring of these draft horses will then be considered impure or contaminated. Cathy inherits these supposedly useless horses. There will be 5of them. All of them being 6 years old by the time Cathy inherits them.
Cathy then basically trains the horses and uses them to farm with in spite of the fact that everyone claims that they are worthless half-breeds.
In other words, the hypothetical result of crossbreeding is that the offspring have the physical conformation of the original draft horses, but the demeanor of a more lively type of riding horse.
And now for my third question,...
3. What would be a believable choice of breeds to cross for this?
Keep in mind that this is an accidental breeding. Not one that would be chosen by a breeder. Just one that would be believed by a breeder.
Originally I was thinking in extremes. Like having the draft horse mares being Clydesdales or Shires and the escaped studs being Thoroughbred race horses. That's about as extreme as I could think up. Probably too extreme huh? The offspring of such an extreme breeding would probably a terribly deformed beast? If it took at all? Or would it be believable? I honestly don't know.
So then I started tying to think of a more realistic mating accident. Like maybe Percheron mares and Arabian studs. Or Suffock mares and Mustang studs.
I have no clue, and this is why I put the question you. What's believable?
The idea I'm looking for is to have gentle-natured draft horse mares being crossbred with horses that have a more spunky demeanor and perfer to run instead of work. Then my heroine actually trains and use these horses to farm with in spite of the fact that everyone is telling her that they are worthless horses.
So what's a believable(yet abnormal)crossbreeding that would be considered to be so far out that no one would do it on purpose, yet close enough that it would still be believable as an accidental breeding?
Keep in mind that I'm not asking for genuine breeding advice. I'm asking what is the most extreme case that I can claim without sounding completely absurd.