Question About Horse's Tail - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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Question About Horse's Tail

My husband and I have two horses already (a Tennessee Walker and a Quarterhorse) and were recently given the opportunity to give a home to a third one, whose owner has cancer and needs to give his horses to a good home.

We have had our horses for about 6 months or so and they are doing well but we do not know much about the different breeds of horses and things of that nature.

I have a couple of pictures of the horse that they are trying to find a home for and would like to post them here. Like I said, we don't know much about horses in general, but we did notice that his tail is a bit awkward looking.

I don't know if there is actually something wrong with this horse's tail or not, or whether the hair of his tail is just too thin, but you can clearly see the stub of the actual vertebrae of his tail. When he waves his tail, you can see more of a stub than actual hair moving...if that makes any sense! lol

Other than that, he looks to be in good shape, he is a good size and friendly with people and is broken. Our biggest worry is his tail as we don't know what exactly would be the cause for something like this and we've certainly never seen anything like that with our horses now.

Aside from that, if anyone could take a look at the horse and give an idea of what his condition looks like overall (I am sure we'll have a vet come out to give him a proper check up if we decide to adopt) and perhaps a guess on what type of horse he is? All that we know at this point is that he is a gelding.

Thank you in advance!

Second pic...tried to zoom in on the tail a bit but this was taken with a camera phone so I'm not sure how it will come out.

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post #2 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 06:39 PM
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His tail doesn't look that wierd to me. Some horses just have thicker tail-bones than others, and thinner tail hair. About how old is he? How tall?

He looks to be in pretty good shape, but it's hard to say much about his conformation from the picture. He has a really sweet face. I'll hazard a guess that he's an Arab cross. He's got the fine built legs, but he isn't very Arab type in his face. Maybe Arab TB or Arab QH? Arabs will "flag" their tails, and that can make the bone seem more prominent, as well.

He's a pretty guy!

A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient one in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you ~ Unknown
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post #3 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for replying.

I don't know an awful lot about the horse at this point. A friend of ours let us know about the owner's situation just a couple of days ago and we just drove out this afternoon to look at him. (We only live a few miles from the owner's place)

I would guess that he is shorter than our QH which is 15 hands. So maybe 14.5 hands or a ltitle less?

His tail just seemed weird to us because both of our horses have very thick tail hair and seeing the vertebrae stick out like that just seemed wrong to but we're horse newbies still in any case which is why I wanted to ask more experienced owners. So maybe it is just the fact that his tail bone is thicker and the hair is thinner. What you say about "flagging" the tail also makes sense to me because that is almost what it looked like when he was moving it, like he was waving a flag or something! lol

He seems to be a very friendly horse, not underweight or with any scarring or limping or anything of that nature.

We would of course get a vet to come out and give him any shots he needs or a thorough check-up if we decide to adopt him. He just basically needs a new home and the owner is just needs someone to give him away to.

We have plenty of acreage for more horses and the two we have are very friendly with other horses. This one is in the pasture with other horses as well, but the owner is giving them all away due to his health issues, so we're just trying to do a good deed and help out if we can.

It's really rainy here today but I will go out and take more pictures of him over the weekend and post more of him so that you guys can get a better look at him. I'd love any opinions or advice on his overall look as well as the horse tail issue.

Thanks so much again for your help!
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post #4 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 07:21 PM
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I'm thinking more and more that he has Arab in his background somewhere. Here are a couple of pics. See especially the first one; same fine legs, round hindquarters, and short back.

At 14 and 1/2 hands, he's right in the ballpark for arab height. Arabs usually have thicker tail hair, but if he's a cross, especially with a Quarter horse (which are kind of known for skimpy tails ), he might have just inherited the thicker bone and thinner tail. Using some MTG might get the hair to thicken out some...

Here's a Paso Fino.

These are gaited horses, also around 14 to 14.2 hands on average. I think that "they" do something to their tails, though, for show. I'm not sure what, whether the tail bone is broken and re-set like other gaited breeds used to be, or if the hair on the top of the bone is braided tight to draw the tail into that position (I don't know much about showing Paso's), but there are odder tails than your adoption prospect.

A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient one in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you ~ Unknown
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 07:33 PM
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Yep, I would guess an Arab cross as well. Maybe he is crossed with a foundation Appy. Many of those old type Appys were known for scraggly mane/tail, big head, and big feet. Or maybe he is a pure appy with odd conformation; though I bet some kind of cross.

Here is a pic of an Appy with a tail very similar to his. (you can click on it to go to a bigger pic.

He seems to be in good condition, maybe a bit fat but if he hasn't been worked, then that is to be expected. So long as he is vetted, he may be a nice addition to your herd (especially if he is rideable). He looks like a sweet boy.
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post #6 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 08:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again so much guys!

My first thought was Appy mix as well smrobs, but again, I don't know very much about the horse breeds and such yet. Like I said, we have two horses now and we are just content to ride them on our property and baby them here at home. Both of our other horses are pretty laid-back and I think this one would fit in well. He seems to have a sweet personality. Maybe he is an Appy/Arab cross.

I just wanted to make sure there wasn't something wrong with his tail...our horse's tails just don't look anything like this one but I'm ok with it so long as it is not a bad thing (i.e. indicitive of a problem!)

And yes he does look a bit chunky, and one of our other horse's is getting a bit fat too b/c I am unable to ride right now (I'm pregnant) so I've ordered my husband to start working him out some more. I have been told that this horse is broke so hopefully he won't pose a problem riding as well so we can get a friend to go riding with my husband alongside him until the baby comes!

Will post more pics hopefully tomorrow.
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post #7 of 9 Old 09-18-2009, 09:59 PM
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I definitely think he's at least part Paso Fino. Even if he's not gaited, it's possible that he just got lazy and stopped. Paso Finos have tails exactly like that, as someone else pointed out. It's called a "J tail." There is a huge difference between a J tail and the way an Arabian holds their tail. Arabians hold their tails straight up in the air, away from their butt. Pasos hold their tails against their butt, and then they curve away from their body... If that makes any sense.

Paso: Paso fino show image by pasogirlz on Photobucket

See how the Arabian's tailbone is shaped like an upside down U and the Paso's tailbone is shaped like a backwards J? They look completely different, and your gelding's looks like a J to me.

The color is really weird for a Paso though... I don't know what to think about that.

I don't think he looks remotely like an Arab. His face is shaped more like a Paso's - it's not dished like an Arab. His neck is thick like a Paso - not thin like an Arab. His croup is round - not flat as a board like an Arab. And he has a good hip, unlike 90% of Arabs.
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post #8 of 9 Old 09-20-2009, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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You were right Mystique, we talked to our friend who knows this owner well and he is a Paso Fino. Probably a mix I'm sure, and I think the other horses in the pasture with him previously were almost all Appys (will post a pic of the last horse left with him in the pasture)

It's rained here for the last two days, but it's pretty decent weather now so I am going to try and go out there to take some better pics of him to get an opinion on his overall look and maybe some critiques on his tail/body shape.

Thanks again guys!!
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post #9 of 9 Old 09-20-2009, 09:54 PM
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I'd say arab, definetly. I've seen pure arabs looking exactly like that, but of course it can be a mix too.

Always keep your head up, but be careful to keep your nose at a friendly level.

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