Question about Horses and Sleighs / Carriages - The Horse Forum
  • 3 Post By Textan49
  • 2 Post By churumbeque
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post #1 of 8 Old 11-03-2015, 02:27 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Northern Illinois
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Smile Question about Horses and Sleighs / Carriages

Hi all, I'm new to the forum. My husband and I are moving to a new home with a gorgeous two stall barn on 2.8 acres in northern Illinois. The property is next to a Christmas tree farm and a forest preserve 1.2 mile down the road. I wanted to get a horse but having trouble deciding which breed. I am hoping to have a multi-purpose horse that can pull a sleigh or carriage and also can ride trails. I would eventually like to give the neighbors and friends rides. I am somewhat of a beginner. I took English lessons for a year like 8 years ago and I go on trail rides on my vacations. I have never owned a horse before. I am looking to get a horse capable of pulling a 4 person sleigh or carriage. I realize that a sleigh is harder to pull than a carriage with wheels. I only want one horse at this time. (The barn has two stalls.) I am kind of intimidated by the draft horses and was looking at the Morgan horse. What are your thoughts? Would that be too much for a smaller horse other than a draft?

Thank you.
Caroline1977 is offline  
post #2 of 8 Old 11-03-2015, 11:30 PM
Join Date: Feb 2015
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You do not need an eighteen hand Belgian to pull a four person sleigh. There are many breeds and crosses that could do the job and also double as a trail horse. From your post (1 year of English lessons and vacation trail rides) puts you in the position of being a beginner rider. If it is your goal to have a ride/drive horse I would suggest you get some experience specifically in driving and general horse care before thinking about purchasing the horse.
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post #3 of 8 Old 11-04-2015, 03:02 PM
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I agree with Textan, go get some lessons on horse care and driving before purchasing a horse.

As far as breeds go you can go with just about any stocky built horse that is trained to pull. Many people like Morgans, Fjords, Haflingers, Stock horses and their crosses. Whomever you find to get lessons from would likely be able to recommend a horse for you.

"They see me rollin, They hatin, Patrolling they tryin to catch me ridin dirty"
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post #4 of 8 Old 11-04-2015, 03:25 PM
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I would not worry about driving at this point. Get a good riding horse that could drive later. 4 person slieghs are not very friendly and tip easy if you hit something not very big while turning because they are so long.
Palomine and Mulefeather like this.
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post #5 of 8 Old 11-04-2015, 07:29 PM
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There should be Amish around you, and you might be able to get driving and harness lessons from them, after you get settled and they may be able to hook you up with a nice safe driving horse.

But I would not rush this, as you need to be more knowledgeable about horses first, carriages can add some real problems to mix, if you have problems.

Horses make me a better person.
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post #6 of 8 Old 11-04-2015, 10:28 PM
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To the OP,
For someone starting out with an idea your question is very common. The fact is that with some exposure to different types of horses most of us have come up with a type that we are more comfortable with than others. If someone prefers a stocky QH type they would probably not enjoy riding a tall lanky TB even if both horses were well trained for that persons ability. While obtaining more experience is important before you go looking for any horse it will also give you insight into what type is best suited for your needs
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post #7 of 8 Old 11-06-2015, 08:37 AM
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In the UK, insurance for driving horses is as high as for event horses, much higher than for ordinary riding. This is because driving can be riskier of something goes wrong.

Before you set out on your venture I suggest that you have driving lessons from someone experienced.

There are people who regularly drive here and can offer sounder advice than me who, by comparison has driven very little.
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post #8 of 8 Old 11-06-2015, 10:48 AM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Central Illinois
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I'm glad that you posted this question here. Nowadays most people that drive get into driving horses after they have owned riding horses. You are totally green to both. Your goals are not impossible, but you really need to find someone to help you buy what you are looking for. If you want a riding horse, I would recommend this breeder, and they are located in Lena, close to the WI border:
Appleridge Mountain Horses - Horses For Sale
I bought my KMH gelding from them. They breed sane Mountain Horses, and they start the training with the foals following their dams as they ride forest preserves adjacent to their property. They are backed and ridden as trail horses, initially, as 2yo's. They have several finished horses for sale, including a very pretty blue roan mare, that I saw as a foal in 2009.
When someone recommends a breeder/trainer, you definitely get what you pay for, so don't go cheap.
They train their horses to avoid knocking your leg into trees, which we discovered after we had bought "Long Arm of the Law."
Also, I believe that they are culling out their herd and may be out of the breeding business in a few years.
Gaited horses are VERY COMFORTABLE and a very good way to get into pleasure riding.

A Jack and Three Queens, the latest book by James C. Dedman,
Hope that you fall in love with "Trot", like I did!
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