What do you guys think of Thoroughbreds? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 41 Old 07-19-2014, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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What do you guys think of Thoroughbreds?

Today after I took my horse for a nice ride along the road, (with a reflective vest and saddle pad) I walked him back into the barn. An older lady there said she saw how calm he was when the cars, trucks and tractor-trailers went by. She asked me what breed he was. I said, "He's a Thoroughbred. He's off-track." She looked quite surprised and said, "I would've guessed an Appy. He didn't even flinch at those cars and trucks flying by. All of the Thoroughbreds I've ever been around were total lunatics." Then she told me about how all of the Thoroughbreds she rode were spooky and really hard to ride because they didn't want to stop, they just wanted to run. I have yet to meet a Thoroughbred that is like what she described. Most of the ones I've been around are just half-ton babies. A lot of the Thoroughbreds here are amazing trail horses as long as you don't mind a faster paced trail than most, seeing as they enjoy trotting or cantering the whole time. What are your opinions on Thoroughbreds? Do you like them or not? Have you met mostly hot ones or laid back ones?
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post #2 of 41 Old 07-19-2014, 11:56 PM
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I like Thoroughbreds, but I personally do find them to be a hotter breed than a lot of others, especially when they're off track. Doesn't mean they can't be retrained into an excellent horse in just about every disciple, but I've met more hot Thoroughbreds than calm ones.

One great thing about them is their versatility. They're excellent in so many different disciplines! I also personally like a horse with more "go" than "no", so personally, they're a good mount for me. I doubt I'd ever buy one (unless I found a gem like yours seems to be) but they really are an all around good horse.
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post #3 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 12:07 AM
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I LOVE thoroughbreds! I think they are amazing horses, and they're just like huge puppies. A lot of them who are off the track are usually more aggressive or timid towards people because they weren't always handled correctly, or they've been abused. But once you start showing affection, they usually bond with one specific person. Horses are horses, they have personalities too, and I feel like you can't judge a horse by their breed, only by their training and how their story.

Also, I think thoroughbreds make beautiful event horses. A lot of the time if you can find one that really enjoys it, they can make it to the upper levels. Like clumsychelsea said, they are extremely versatile, so I feel like that's another reason to like them. Some people just have limited experience with certain breeds and that just go by what they hear, but it really helps if you experience it first hand.
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post #4 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 12:24 AM
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I've only known three crazy thoroughbreds. One belonged to the people who owned the barn my friend that I worked for leased. He was hot, but not overly-crazy. Another belonged to the people I free-leased my old gelding from. He was just bat-crap crazy. We'd put him on the hot walker and he would spin in small circles until he was all lathered up. Only myself and my friend were allowed to handle him. Then there's my best friend's gelding. Again, just bat-crap crazy. Love the old man to death, but he's crazy.

On the other hand, I've known several TBs who were amazing horses. One was a mare who let her owner's 3yo son lead her in from turnout and followed him like a puppy. Another was a horse I desperately wanted to buy, but he wasn't for sale when I was looking. A couple of years ago he came available, but I couldn't afford a second horse. Cried when I had to tell his owners no. He was just a sweet, amazing guy. Another was a horse we used at the Girl Scout horse camp. A little forward, but an absolute sweetheart. My old BO's son's horse was an old TB and he was just a sweet, steady old man. Then there was a TB on the BO's dude string who was everyone's favorite horse. He sadly died of a twisted gut (no one knew anything was wrong with him until he went down and didn't get back up...he died on the way to the vet's...nuecropsy revealed a severely twisted gut with several feet of dead intestine).

So, all in all, I think it depends more on the individual horse than it does the breed. I also think that if it's an OTTB, it seriously depends on how they're let down from the track and what they're fed. The three bat-crap crazy TBs I know were all OTTBs and were/are all on fairly high-energy feeds. They also weren't let down from the track properly (especially my best friend's gelding...he had a month off, then she started riding him and running him on barrels...he never learned what "stop" was).

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post #5 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 12:41 AM
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I've only been up close and personal to one thoroughbred and there were a lot of negatives about him but he had one huge positive that made up for the negatives and then some. Keep in mind I am only speaking of one individual within the breed and am not lumping the whole breed in the same category.

He was an OTTB that had been donated to hubby (only boyfriend at the time) to use on the department's horse patrol (the officers used their own horses, the dept. didn't own any). When we joined forces not just with ourselves but our horses too his TB made me crazy.

He fell in love with my mare and had to be touching her at all times when they were in the pasture. Aggravated her too and she kicked the snot out of him more than once. Which leads to the other thing I hated about him...He was dumber than a box of rocks. He could never remember which feeder was his at meal times, couldn't learn to respect my mare's space, had no social skills (I figure that was more due to his upbringing), no personality and stood around with this blank look on his face all the time, and he could think of nothing but eating. Even his walk was bone jarring when under saddle. He'd cross to the other side of the trail so that he could trip over a rock. There was not a thing I liked about him.

Then one day hubby had a neighborhood meet & greet sort of thing to go to for work. I went along and got my eyes opened to how awesome that TB could be. He let endless kids sit on him without moving a muscle. There were sirens going off, people everywhere, a huge fake dog walking around (one of the officers in a McGruff costume lol) along with real dogs from the K-9 dept., balloons, smell of smoke from the grills that were going, just a general loud party atmosphere. That horse was a Saint on that day and I had a new respect for him but he still got on my nerves at home.
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post #6 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 12:44 AM
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i rode two Thoroughbreds, and one thbd x warmblood cross.

all were good horses, but two were more reactive to things, and all had kind of weak hooves.

one of them, the first one, was OTT, and he was a superb trail horse. man, so fast, so sure footed, so much fun. his owner would take him to Arizona and go "fox" hunting across the sagebrush plains at full tilt. he was a great horse, but he was occasionally spooky and explosive.
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post #7 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 01:30 AM
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
all had kind of weak hooves..
I've noticed that too! All but one of the TBs I've dealt with had to be shod or they were lame on flat dirt. So frustrating.

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post #8 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 01:51 AM
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90% of the horses i have been around are OTTBs, including my first lease, first horse, and current lease. I never had much to compare them to until i recently started riding my friends Quarter Horse. I thought the Thouroughbred attitude was just a horse thing because of my lack of experience with other breeds. Through comparisons though, a TB is still my top choice. Then again, I haven't worked with anything but the common breeds (Thouroughbreds, Quarter Horses, Arabians, Paints, Appaloosas, and Mustangs)
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post #9 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 02:18 AM
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I have owned several TBs & TB crosses over the years and personally I find TB's no hotter than any of the Warmbloods I've worked with. I do find the average TB or Warmblood is more sensitive than the average QH or Draft, although, ultimately I believe it is all about the training and bond. If the horse feels comfortable knowing you are going to keep both of you safe then they will not feel the need to spook/bolt often. I think the environment and overall genuine happiness of the animal definitely plays a role too.

As for OTTB's, I don't think they naturally feel the need to bolt more than other horse's simply because they used to race. This is just from my personal experience and I have only worked with a few OTTBs before. I also rescued an OTTB, he was a sad situation and had been abused by 3 homes over his 12 year life span. He was starving and alone in a field when I found him. I knocked on the door and asked if I could have him and the lady was so pleased to be rid of him. She didn't know anything about horses and she was quite old. He had been abandoned on the property. Apparently he cribbed, bolted, and there was no way you could take him anywhere close to water. About 4 weeks later he was starting to gain weight, I could have my hubby get on and we would ride up & down the road, and I could walk him through puddles and spray him with a hose.
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post #10 of 41 Old 07-20-2014, 05:46 AM
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I've ridden 3 thoroughbreds in lessons. Two of which were ottbs.

First one was an ottb, around 24-26 years old if i remember correctly. He had enevr gotten to the track as he was too slow. He was probably the calmest horse ive ever been on, it could be thunder storming and he would act as though it was a bright sunny day. He wasn't a very good mover, and had a few leg issues, but otherwise, a very sweet horse. All the beginners loved him. Unless someone told you he was an ottb, you would have never guessed. A 28 year old arab was wilder than him.

The second wasnt an ottb, i think he did eventing at some point. He was very fat, and was a terrible mover (not leg issues, just not very nice paces) but he was very sweet. He acted up more than the ottb, but he was generally very safe. I loved riding him, though he was tough, he was great to learn to trot on. He gave me my first jump :)

The third i rode recently, i actually ride him now. Hes a 10-20 year old ottb, no idea of his age but I'm estimating. Hes great to ride, very responsive, great mover, wonderful horse. Out of the three thoroughbreds ive ridden he acts the most racehorsey. While tacking up and ridding hes fine, but when i walk him through the stables, he will flip out. He wont always, but often enough that you have to be weary. He will spook a bit, but not badly, he will just stop and maybe jump around a little.

Overall i like riding thorughbreds. Have never had one that acts really racehorsey, but i. Sure ill encounter one at one stage.

If I am not riding I'm thinking about horses, and if I am not thinking about horses I'm riding
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