I have attempted to scroll backwards through these threads and while there were various other articles of interest, I didn't find one regarding this topic...
Towards the end of 2010, I had intentions on lightly starting Cerra in the spring. Then, on Christmas Day we discovered that we are expecting. Until early fall, that dream is out the window. As a result, I've been in contact with a trainer who, after a few detailed discussions, I feel is fully capable. Turns out that he had been working with Cerra prior to her sale (to me) and he is also the gentleman that had told me that he suspected her to be a Draft cross. (Made a lot of sense since her head and back are thicker than our other TB, and she's also miles quieter).
When it says "lightly starting", I mean having her accept the saddle and bridle, with hopes of accepting a rider. (Shouldn't be hard since she has allowed me on her back before, and she has ponied both of our young daughters. )
I have noticed that many people advise against starting a Draft-Cross before 4 years old, and that I tend to agree... but if she is intellectually ready, is it alright to refine ground work and have her accept the materials for future use? If there is no heavy-duty riding and the rider is relatively light, would this be alright or would it hinder her development? Cerra is very much a sponge, and I think that she would enjoy the new experience. I have no plans on eventing or showing her in the future, nor throwing her in to hard labour. Essentially, she is to be my beloved trail horse. <3
If you have a similar cross or have worked with one, feel free to give your ideas. Also, any activities you think she may enjoy! My Love is quite the character.