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Discussion Starter · #1 ·


I veritably barrel raced a replica horse of this anatomy in the 1D class.
under scrutiny about halter horses being unable to run with out injuring themselves.
My viewpoint any horse can be unsound via laborious work + improper procedures to wrap legs and check equipment.

I accept the reality of what a halter horse is. I'm firmly convinced a halter horse can do what ever it might be someone wants to do that day. A trail horse. Barrels. Fun shows. Rope. Cut. Jump. whichever the rider desires.

I veritably fathom that Horses are bred for particular assignments. I believe it to be acceptable to have fun on the horse you own.

My inquest. could I barrel race this horse or will he go lame the first barrel? lol
 

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This is a very old debate here on this forum :wink:.

It's unlikely that he would immediately go lame at the first barrel attempted, but it's also highly unlikely that he would be able to stand up to the constant rigorous training required to stay fit and competent to run....and it's simply a fluke if you can find a horse built like that with the speed to be competitive.

It's not the immediate effect that people note with halter horses doing performance events. Most of them can do strenuous disciplines for a time. It's in the longevity pool that they fall short. They simply don't have the substance where it's important (their legs) to maintain such a difficult and demanding life for more than a short time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I concur to the fullest.
absolutely coincide with you on long term effect. I see the possibility more so increasing after competitively barrel racing for a couple years.
With out question It's a novelty Having luxury Beauty and speed wrapped up in one package.
although he isn't as morphed as a large variety of halter horses.
 

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The way I see it : halter horses are kinda like a person that only does body building...they can't do any "athletic" sporting events. Ever see a body builder doing anything other than lift weights and "pose". I do know that most of them run(albeit very slow and not too far), but that in and of itself isn't "athletic".

I do think it is a said deal that AQHA supports horses winning that can't really do anything but look pretty. However, our friend that has a very nice halter horse(which she readily admits can't do anything else-heck, getting her off the trailer scares our friend), and that horse is a very impressive looking animal....until you get to the legs and tiny feet.
 

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I don't have a lot of experience with halter horses, but in my opinion, I don't see a horse of this build enjoying himself running barrels. Any horses I've seen like this are content just showing at halter and really don't have the motivation to run like you want a barrel horse to.

I'm not going to say it's impossible, I just think if you want to be fair to your horse (at least I personally would) steer clear of events that will put physical wear and tear on him.

Yes I agree with you, I'm am very sure a halter horse could compete in any event you want. Quarter horses (and paints) are great all around horses that are (usually) bred to be intelligent. However, is what you are competing in fair to your horse?

For example, thoroughbreds are bred to be fast. Not thick boned. You don't see a lot of people barrel racing thoroughbreds. Yes, thoroughbreds "can" do anything you ask of them (trail, jumping, dressage, driving, barrels, poles, etc.) but you don't see a lot of people barrel racing thoroughbreds. One of the reasons being, they were not bred with strong bones to stand up to the rigor that it takes to stop 1000 pounds moving at over 30 mph and turn in 360 degrees around that barrel.

I have seen a few very nice barrel horses that were thoroughbreds, but they just don't hold up to that kind of work very long. There is a reason you don't see show jumpers and race horses over the age of 10. They were built to race while they were young, and not much else. Sadly, the same is true with halter horses. They were built to be bulky with nice conformation and not much else. I am by no means putting halter horses down, I'm sure they are very intelligent and capable, unfortunately bred into a massive body.

You could probably try it and see. Your horses isn't going to turn up lame the first time you work through the pattern and if you start slow your horse should let you know if it is experiencing any pain or difficulty at an early stage in training. Possibly when working at the trot or lope.

I would not recommend competing regularly at a rigorous speed. I'm sure it's fine to run the pattern every so often at a fun show though:) Maybe try different events that don't require so much strain on a horse like competitive trail or western pleasure?

Just keep an eye on your horse and have is checked for soundness before hand. Sorry for the huge response:/ By the way, that horse in the picture is beautiful, i don't know if it's yours? I hope I helped some!
 

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My daughter's mare's grandsire is a full brother to Barlink Macho Man. She has been relatively successful as a barrel horse. She doesn't love working that hard, but she does her job. The other side of her pedigree is heavy in cow horses so she has the balance that makes her a decent barrel horse.

This is my 11 year old in a 4D race.
 

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Fowl--That's a nice looking mare.

OP, I don't know much about barrel racing... But I think much of it has to do with conditioning, and other factors like whether you trained a halter bred baby in barrels versus a legit halter horse and retrained them for barrels. Does that make sense? x.x

Anyway, the point I am getting at is that I think pretty much any horse can do any discipline at lower levels, so long as the rider pays attention to the horse's needs.
 

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I accept the reality of what a halter horse is. I'm firmly convinced a halter horse can do what ever it might be someone wants to do that day. A trail horse. Barrels. Fun shows. Rope. Cut. Jump. whichever the rider desires.
I disagree to some extent.

I might enjoy barrel racing, as one example, but my horse needs to enjoy it too. You have to take the horse's preferances and desires into consideration too.




My viewpoint any horse can be unsound via laborious work + improper procedures to wrap legs and check equipment.

...

My inquest. could I barrel race this horse or will he go lame the first barrel?
While it is true that any horse can become injured, there are certain conformational "faults" that can put a horse more at risk for sustaining an injury. Typically, halter horses are bred to have large muscular bodies, with small feet and fine-boned legs. And sometimes post legs. Those attributes often don't hold up after years of barrel racing. Of course, there are exceptions to the rule and its always important that you take proper care of your horse.

The other thing you have to think about it how agile the horse is. Typically, halter horses are BULKY. Are they going to be quick enough around the barrels?

If you take a body builder and a basketball player and put them through a running course, sure, the body builder will be able to complete the course, but he won't be as agile and quick as the basketball player due to his natural build (muscular and large).

So a lot of it depends on YOUR goals (do you want to win the NFR or just go to a local playday?) and depends on the individual horse's abilities.
 
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A halter horse can do ok and be athletic if they aren't terribly conformed. Diet has a lot to do with it. My mare is running/halter bred I have to be really careful with her because she'll pack on excessive muscle on AIR.

Thankfully she has enough bone and when in work makes an excellent athletic trail horse and was shown WP before DH bought her.

I would never attempt barrels with her though. She may have the speed, not that I've seen it, does for sure have the agility, but with her heavy build I just wouldn't put that much pressure on her joints. She's too good of a horse in most every other area to risk injuring.

Same as your paint OP, he may be great doing so many other things, I wouldn't risk it.
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I concur beau159.
Being adventurous is unmistakably the essential factor. I am strongly convinced doing things outside the box is an immense learning experience for both equine and equestrian.
Even if you're not marvelous at it. it's an exhilarating involvement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
A halter horse can do ok and be athletic if they aren't terribly conformed. Diet has a lot to do with it. My mare is running/halter bred I have to be really careful with her because she'll pack on excessive muscle on AIR.

Thankfully she has enough bone and when in work makes an excellent athletic trail horse and was shown WP before DH bought her.

I would never attempt barrels with her though. She may have the speed, not that I've seen it, does for sure have the agility, but with her heavy build I just wouldn't put that much pressure on her joints. She's too good of a horse in most every other area to risk injuring.

Same as your paint OP, he may be great doing so many other things, I wouldn't risk it.
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I once owned a horse that could daydream about food and rise in fat & Muscle. My pislburry dough-horse. lol

I indeed would not be competitive enough to qualify in the NFR on a horse that was unsound. However Under the impression that having the ability to blow off steam is a positive I absolutely would barrel race for the simple joy of preforming a new adventure. Even just at a western pleasure jog lol.



The paint in the picture does not belong to me personally. I wish. she is gorgeous!! Her Conformation is absolutely stunning as well.
 

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The paint in the picture does not belong to me personally. I wish. she is gorgeous!! Her Conformation is absolutely stunning as well.
Are you talking about this one?


If so, then I guess it depends on what your definition of "stunning" is. Personally, I don't think she's that great. Very fine boned, buck knees, posty hocks, tiny feet, steep croup, diaper butt, weak loin, short neck. Basically nothing about that horse even whispers "athleticism". That's why she's a halter horse and not a performance horse.

BUT, I judge all horses with a working cowboy/horseman's eye. If they won't stand up to hours of hard work daily without breaking down in just a few years, then I've got no use for them.
 

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If you want to play that's fine, any horse can play at barrels. My personal experience riding a hypp positive halter bred horse, it felt like I was riding a jack hammer. He wasn't even all bulked up like the horse pictured, just had the extra muscle.
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SMrobs.. **** .. diaper butt.. never heard that one before.
That horse has very poor legs. i would never barrel race it, her knees would not last long.
In the old days.. many years ago, before Impressive, you could have a horse win in halter classes that could still be used . I think the halter horse classes need to change what is considered Ideal, and get back to the basics, a good looking horse that can be used.
 
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