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Fowl Play 09-22-2009 02:20 PM

paint question--kind of long
I'm new here (intro in appropriate forum) and have a questions about paints, particularly bald faced, blue eyed paints. Forgive me if this gets a little long, I want to include as much detail as I can.

My daughter rides an 18 year old paint horse with a bald face and one blue eye. He's about 14.2 hh, and has the disposition of a labrador. He's extremely sweet, affectionate, and loves attention. Yesterday during her lesson the kids were trotting a barrel pattern (something they've done many times) and if they were able to trot the entire pattern, they could lope back after the 3rd barrel. My daughter and her lesson horse make an extraordinarly pair, and the horse really does well for her. She also wants to barrel race eventually so this is one of her favorite activities. I think her body language has a lot do with what happened next. After coming around the 3rd barrel, she gave him a cue and little nudge, and he took off--fast. Way beyond a lope. It took her a little while (half the distance of the arena) to bring herself to be able to do a one rein stop, but she managed, and stayed on, still smiling, but slightly humbled. The instructor allowed her to collect herself, then had her do the barrels at a walk this time, and she had to work to keep the horse at a walk. Then she had her lope around the arena again, to make sure she and the horse were still working together.

I trust this instructor a lot, and honestly, I wasn't scared watching, nor was my daughter scared while it happened. This is not the typical behavior for this horse, who is usually an avanced beginner level horse. He has been trained much higher than he's used for but usually does beginners because of his dispostion.

So I sent pictures out of her lesson yesterday because I take pictures most of the time, and she called all the relatives to tell them about her wild ride. She was in great spirits despite not having total control yesterday. I got an email back from a relative that used to have horses telling me that bald faced, blue eyed horses have wild streak, and I should ask for my daughter to ride another horse.

First of all, she'd be crushed--she adores this horse. Secondly, I raise labradors and this comment to me is a lot like the "Chocolate labs are hyper and out of control" comment I hear often. I just wanted some insight regarding that statement. Personally I don't think the horse is wild, I've seen him bring my daughter a long way in the last year. I honestly think that her "go attitude" and body language are responsible for his little run yesterday. She has been loping for about 2 months on him and has been really under control. Another factor that might play into this is that all 3 horses were a little giddy yesterday because they hadn't been in the outdoor arena in a while.

Sorry for the length, and if this is misplaced. I just wanted to get as many details out there so you understood the situation and could better answer the question.

close2prfct 09-22-2009 02:40 PM

I have been around many bald face blue eyed paints each were as individual as any other horse some were so calm a freight train couldn't budge them others were high strung then others somewhere in the middle. The point I am getting at is color is no indicator of attitude, breeding is but not color. I would not have my daughter change horses if the instructor feels he is calm enough for beginners considering his advanced training I would stick with him.

BTW I've also owned both yellow and chocolate labs, the yellow was spastic the chocolate a couch potato.

Fowl Play 09-22-2009 03:14 PM

Thanks. That's kind of what I was thinking. This horse is a total pocket pony, and if you rub him behind his eyes, under his ears, you can put him to sleep. I really think it was her "high" to be doing barrels at a faster pace that gave him the extra go.

mayfieldk 09-22-2009 03:23 PM

saying that color affects horses is like saying color affects people.

It doesn't. Simple as that.

Fowl Play 09-22-2009 05:56 PM

Having the experience with similar comments in the dog world, I assumed as much. I just don't know enough about horses to not ask. As far as breeding goes, I just don't know. I learned that he was bred for western pleasure, so his conformation leans that direction, and he was raised a lot like a dog as foal, so he's very nosey and "in your bubble" as my daughter says. She's had to learn to correct him a lot for that, but now he doesn't push it there anymore. It amazes me how much control a 7 year old can have over an animal his size. He's a popular horse with the young girls because he's so affectionate, and he loves the grooming attention he gets from everyone who rides him. I'll post pictures eventually, but I can't access them from work so it'll have to wait until this evening.

I appreciate the comments. It confirms what I thought originally.

LeahKathleen 09-22-2009 06:04 PM

Each horse is as individual as a person. I have encountered many blue-eyed, bald-faced paints, and they've all been as different as can be.

Honestly, your question has been answered. She may have just knocked her foot into him a little hard, or he might have been nipped at by another horse in the pasture and was sore.

Or, he might have been zoned out - a lesson horse trotting the pattern? I'm sure he does it all day every day. She might have just startled him.

I'd say no need for worry. :]

Sunny06 09-22-2009 06:05 PM


saying that color affects horses is like saying color affects people.
Actually, little piece of trivia:

Bald faces are said to have the cancer gene as well as grey horses.

This dosen't mean they will get cancer but it does mean that they have a higher chance than let's say a sorrel.

This is not made up. There have been many tests. All come up positive. Our bald-faced grey horse had cancer. Died.

Sorry, not trying to scare OP. :D

PaintHorseMares 09-22-2009 06:24 PM


Originally Posted by Fowl Play (Post 409278)
...bald faced, blue eyed horses have wild streak...

Just simply not true.

There is an old horse saying (at least around here)...."Every ride is different", and that applies to any horse, even the finished and seasoned ones.

dreamrideredc 09-22-2009 07:16 PM

No way! I myself own a blue eyed, bald faced paint and he is spectacular! I love him more than you could imagine! He is quiet, lovable, adorable, etc. Not to mention gorgeous :wink: Color has NOTHING to do with behavior/attitude.

Horray for paints!!! =D

xEquestrianx 09-22-2009 07:25 PM

Not necessarily, some are great, but sometimes really flashy/colorful horses can be because they are bred for color more than disposition a lot of times.

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