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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've noticed a lot of people on the forum don't "approve" of grade horses because of the ability of their "performance level". I'm curious to why that is, could someone explain a little?
I've seen some threads about potential buys of grades where other users tell the potential buyer that the horse wont go as far as a registered horse, no matter the conformation/training level/ect of the grade horse in question.

I've only owned two registered horses [AQH] and they were/are both amazing and I love them to death. But most of the horses I have owned are grade and they can do just as much, at the same level and [sometimes] better then a registered horse. I also know a lot of grade horses from showing that still perform just as well as the registered "amazingly" bred horses. Guess I'm just a backyard grade horse type of girl. :-|
 

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i have owned over four dozen horses in my life. MOST are $500 or less grade horses. my favorite horse of my life was Sully, best horse in the world, i traded 10 round bales for him when he was four cuz i unloaded the round bales then the guy decided he had no cash and i told him i'd take that horse (and pointed to sully) in exchange...turned out to be the most capable horse on the ranch. i taught him how to work cattle, cut (competed on him cutting), trail ride, barrell race, rope, check cattle, you name it Sully would do it. i've owned $30,000 horses out of prestige QH lines as well. most can do everything as well. i think its about the demenour and how you handle the horse that makes the difference. my horses work. i have 500+ head of momma cattle (meaning almost a thousand between calving and sale) on over 1000 acres and they WORK. i ask the same out of my grade horses as i do my $30k horses. work! i saddle them the same, feed em the same, and when i throw a leg over, it dont matter who i'm on, we got a job to do and we are going to do it. i currently own grade horses and two registered horses that together would pay off my mortgage. i ask and expect the same out of all of them. theres rarely anything wrong with grade horses, they may not always 'look' as pretty as the top line horses and if you show, i guess thats important, but i use a horse as a horse, just like i use a truck as a truck.
 

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There's nothing wrong with grade horses, and many of them are fantastic athletes.

It's just that some people want to know their animal's bloodlines, and whether or not they're performance bred. You don't know that without a pedigree.

A second and even more important reason is that you can determine what, if any, genetic issues may crop up based on your horse's bloodlines.

Taking on a grade, you're basically buying blind; you have no idea what may be lurking in their genetic make up, and you don't know if they're going to suit the discipline for which you bought them.

All of the horses I've owned have been registered. I like to know what their potential is based on their bloodlines, and have a heads up on any illnesses or conditions to which they might be prone.

I don't buy for 'pretty', I buy for conformation and potential. With a registered horse, I know his potential based on his bloodlines.

So throwing aside the 'snob' idea, it really does make sense to have registered horses with traceable bloodlines due to the reasons I listed.
 

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Paint cowgirl: If you ever are looking for a bit of extra help out on the ranch, let me know!! Would love to get out and working from the back of a horse again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
There's nothing wrong with grade horses, and many of them are fantastic athletes.

It's just that some people want to know their animal's bloodlines, and whether or not they're performance bred. You don't know that without a pedigree.

A second reason is that you can determine what, if any, genetic issues may crop up based on your horse's pedigree.

Taking on a grade, you're basically buying blind; you have no idea what may be lurking in their genetic make up, and you don't know if they're going to suit the discipline for which you bought them.

All of the horses I've owned have been registered. I like to know what their potential is based on their bloodlines, and have a heads up on any illnesses or conditions to which they might be prone.

I don't buy for 'pretty', I buy for conformation and potential. With a registered horse, I know his potential based on his bloodlines.

So throwing aside the 'snob' idea, it really does make sense to have registered horses with traceable bloodlines due to the reasons I listed.
But just because they're bred for it doesn't mean they're going to be good at it or even like it. Examples: a thoroughbred can bred through the roof with amazing racing blood, but he may just enjoy jumping better and lose races because he doesn't like it. Or a cutting horse that just doesn't really like cows. A warmblood that doesn't like the english world. Do you get where I'm coming from? Just because they're bred for it doesn't mean they'll be good at it.

I get the health problems part of getting a registered horse, but then again most of the diseases [talking about ones like HYPP] are breed associated and grades have a less likely chance of having them. But with other things like blindness and such always have a possibility. But if someone is really worried about that then they could get a pre purchase vet check if they really wanted to. I have yet to buy a grade horse that has health problems [even the ones I buy that are over 200lbs under weight] that could have been seen before hand with knowing the pedigree.

So you're saying if you were to see a grade horse and a registered horse with the same conformation same color same everything, and they were both proven in your desired discipline with the same potential to go higher. Except the registered was $10,000 out of your price range and the grade was only $100 you'd buy the grade?

Nobody said or suggested a "snob" idea.
 

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I haven't seen people saying "grade horses are bad". I've seen them saying "breeding grade horses is bad". :wink:

The only problem with showing if you own grade is that you can't participate in breed-specific shows (like AQHA or APHA shows). But say for dressage shows I go to noone really cares if you own a registered horse, a grade, or a mule.
 

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i love my grades. its the same to me as owning a mixed breed dog from the pound. you never know what you get until you get it and work with it...

it has always worked out for me but i don't compete in anything...well not yet anyways lol

but i guess for ppl who are big into showing and want to get somewhere with it it is necesary to have a nice pedigree registered horse so you know what to base them off of before spending the money
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
i love my grades. its the same to me as owning a mixed breed dog from the pound. you never know what you get until you get it and work with it...

it has always worked out for me but i don't compete in anything...well not yet anyways lol

but i guess for ppl who are big into showing and want to get somewhere with it it is necesary to have a nice pedigree registered horse so you know what to base them off of before spending the money
Girls I know that compete in NBHA and MeBHA with they're grades do just as well and better then girls with their AHQs. I would post pictures and videos of them but forum rules say I can't [right?].
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I haven't seen people saying "grade horses are bad". I've seen them saying "breeding grade horses is bad". :wink:

The only problem with showing if you own grade is that you can't participate in breed-specific shows (like AQHA or APHA shows). But say for dressage shows I go to noone really cares if you own a registered horse, a grade, or a mule.
I've seen a few on potential buy critiques as well but agree a lot are on breeding. :)
 

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get the health problems part of getting a registered horse, but then again most of the diseases [talking about ones like HYPP] are breed associated and grades have a less likely chance of having them. But with other things like blindness and such always have a possibility. But if someone is really worried about that then they could get a pre purchase vet check if they really wanted to. I have yet to buy a grade horse that has health problems [even the ones I buy that are over 200lbs under weight] that could have been seen before hand with knowing the pedigree.

So you're saying if you were to see a grade horse and a registered horse with the same conformation same color same everything, and they were both proven in your desired discipline with the same potential to go higher. Except the registered was $10,000 out of your price range and the grade was only $100 you'd buy the grade?
Grade doesn't always mean partbred, Mutt, heinz 57 - it merely means there are no papers in hand.

Grade horses can have the same genetic issues. The owner/vet sinmply doesn't have a clear starting point as they would if they had the genetic history in front of them.
 

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But just because they're bred for it doesn't mean they're going to be good at it or even like it.
Yes, which is why I stated potential, not that they'd be guaranteed to be good at it. My TB is a perfect example. He made a crappy racehorse, but he's a good athlete and does very well at hunter paces, foxhunting, and trail riding. I took him on because I knew he'd been bred as an athlete, and would probably do well with my preferred disciplines.

For whatever discipline you buy you want a horse with the proper potential, and you won't know that unless you buy one with proven bloodlines. Doesn't mean that horse is going to love the job or even be great at it, but the potential is higher for success than in a horse for which you have no background.

I get the health problems part of getting a registered horse, but then again most of the diseases [talking about ones like HYPP] are breed associated and grades have a less likely chance of having them. But with other things like blindness and such always have a possibility. But if someone is really worried about that then they could get a pre purchase vet check if they really wanted to. I have yet to buy a grade horse that has health problems [even the ones I buy that are over 200lbs under weight] that could have been seen before hand with knowing the pedigree.
If you don't know a horse's pedigree, you have no idea what genetic anomalies or conditions for which he might be prone. A PPE won't give you that information, it will only give you the physical condition of the horse at the moment. Even blood work won't tell you anything, unless you're looking for something specific.

A grade could have bloodlines back to Impressive, but you wouldn't know that until he showed signs of HYPP. There's no guarantee that a grade won't be prone to illnesses or conditions that plague specific breeds, because he could very well have those breeds in his pedigree.

I have yet to buy a registered horse that had health problems, so I don't see what correlation you're trying to make.

So you're saying if you were to see a grade horse and a registered horse with the same conformation same color same everything, and they were both proven in your desired discipline with the same potential to go higher. Except the registered was $10,000 out of your price range and the grade was only $100 you'd buy the grade?
Certainly, why not? If the horse is already proven in that discipline, I don't have to worry about his potential. Snowman was a grade, and look how well he did over the years.

There's a lot of snobbery on both sides of the fence when it comes to grades and pedigreed horses. I've always agreed that there are good and bad in both, and to say that one is better than the other is ludicrous.
 

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I haven't seen people saying "grade horses are bad". I've seen them saying "breeding grade horses is bad". :wink:
Bingo we have a winner, Grade horses can grow up to be great, or terrible, sick or healthy. breeding mutts is a shot in the dark. Seems like grade breeders always assume that they will get a foal that has the good features of both parents. It is just as likely to get the bad features of both parents.
 

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I like registered horses, but I've had my handful of grades. For what I do I don't need papers, even my grade colt (who I actually know his breeding) can be entered in barrel futurities if I wanted too. I like knowing my horses pedigrees and lines and it helps with potential. But there's also plenty of registered horses out there doing something their not bred to do and excelling in it. Unless you want to do breed shows or breed, being registered shouldn't matter.
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I've seen a few on potential buy critiques as well but agree a lot are on breeding. :)
I think with potential buy if you plan to re-sell later in life (and some people do, nothing wrong with it), it's usually easier to sell the papered one. Or at least a common believe is it's easier. :)

Also for the particular discipline it's preferable to have a horse with certain lines sometime (that were bred for say discipline). Overall people look very differently at the registration. Mine both are registered, and frankly I don't care: if they were grades I'd be totally OK.
 

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Two of my three horses are grade. One is a BLM mustang...sure seems healthy, but no one knows his parentage.

My Appy is also 'grade', but the rancher I got him from knew his bloodlines back for generations. He breeds his own horses for use on the ranch, and knew the history of the Appy stallion...that broke one fence and bred a purebred Arabian mare thru another fence. But the bloodlines were known for at least 5 generations - they just aren't registered anywhere.

Some folks need a purebred for a reason, and some understand bloodlines. My mare is purebred, but all that tells me is that she is from CMK lines - mostly K. I don't know enough for it to mean anything to me.
 

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Your mare's Arabian, bsms?

CMK stands for Crabbet/Maynesboro/Kellogg. If she's heavily Kellogg, it means most of her parentage is from the Kellogg Ranch. Those 3 breeding farms have heavily influenced the pedigrees of US bred Arabians for almost 100 years.

And yes, they're those Kelloggs; the cereal people. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
A grade could have bloodlines back to Impressive, but you wouldn't know that until he showed signs of HYPP. There's no guarantee that a grade won't be prone to illnesses or conditions that plague specific breeds, because he could very well have those breeds in his pedigree.

I have yet to buy a registered horse that had health problems, so I don't see what correlation you're trying to make.
I agreed with you. :D
..Grade horses can grow up to be great, or terrible, sick or healthy. Breeding mutts is a shot in the dark. Seems like grade breeders always assume that they will get a foal that has the good features of both parents. It is just as likely to get the bad features of both parents.
The same can happen with a registered horse, not all registered horses are worth $10,000. It depends on where it was bred and how it was raised; same with a grade.
Breeding is always a shot in the dark, and there are plenty of breeders that think the same about registered horses. And there are plenty of grade breeders that know what they're doing. And it's just as likely that you can get bad features from both parents from a registered horse. With breeding there's no guarantee that your going to get what you want. You have the same chance to get a bad foal with a grade mare and stallion then you do with a registered mare and stallion. :)

I think with potential buy if you plan to re-sell later in life (and some people do, nothing wrong with it), it's usually easier to sell the papered one. Or at least a common believe is it's easier. :smile:
I actually think it's easier to sell a grade horse because most of them are under priced and a lot of registered horses [at least in my area] are extremely over priced.
 

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Paint cowgirl: If you ever are looking for a bit of extra help out on the ranch, let me know!! Would love to get out and working from the back of a horse again!

sounds good! i typically pay in beer and supper! lol.

i wouldnt trade it for the world! one day i'm going to buy myself a big ranch in wyoming and join the big league cattle boys! my x-boyfriend gets out there with his four wheeler sometimes and i prove to him over and over again why i stick to horses! try cutting on a four wheeler, try a four wheeler in a 30 foot pen with 10 head and you need to cut one out, ya cant sneak up on an animal in a four wheeler, roping from 'down there' on a four wheeler is a bit ridiculous and a four wheeler sure dont love me like my horsies do!
 

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Sounds good to me! Grainbelt pleaase!!!

Yeah, I haven't worked cattle from atop a horse, but have to an extent rounded up horses. Yes they were dude horses, but some of the new ones were pretty difficult.
 
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