A LITTLE HISTORY

Quarter Horses are a very popular breed in the equestrian world. These horses make ideal all-around horses and can be successful in a variety of sports. They also make very good trail horses, casual riding horses and are equally capable of being a child’s horse as a competitive athlete.

While some Quarter Horses can cost $20,000 or more, it is possible to find a high-quality Quarter Horse for a relatively low price. Many times, you can find a good Quarter Horse for less than $1,000.

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American Quarter Horse

American Quarter Horse, one of the oldest recognized breeds of horses in the United States. The breed originated about the 1660s as a cross between native horses of Spanish origin used by the earliest colonists and English horses imported to Virginia from about 1610. By the late 17th century, these horses were being raced successfully over quarter-mile courses in Rhode Island and Virginia, and hence received the name Quarter Horses. The Quarter Horse was bred for performance and had considerable Thoroughbred blood as well as traits of other lines. Important sires include Janus, an English Thoroughbred imported to Virginia in 1756; Steel Dust (b. 1843); and Peter McCue (b. 1895), called the most influential sire in improving the breed. Quarter Horses are a very popular breed in the equestrian world. These horses make ideal all-around horses and can be successful in a variety of sports. They also make very good trail horses, casual riding horses and are equally capable of being a child’s horse as a competitive athlete.

While some Quarter Horses can cost $20,000 or more, it is possible to find a high-quality Quarter Horse for a relatively low price. Many times, you can find a good Quarter Horse for less than $1,000.

In the early 19th century, Quarter Horses were overshadowed by Thoroughbreds, which ran better over longer distances. But Quarter Horses soon found a new acceptance in the western and southwestern United States as stock horses. The breed’s inherent quickness and agility made it ideally suited to the tasks of the developing frontier. Its good-natured disposition and natural cow-sense made the American Quarter Horse a favorite mount among cowboys during the open-range era of the West.

Modern American Quarter Horses are short and stocky, with heavy muscular development; short, wide heads; and deep, broad chests. Since these horses are used to cut cattle from herds, fast starting, turning, and stopping ability and speed for short distances are essential qualities. Their colors are variable, but all are solid. The height of mature animals varies from 14.3 to 16 hands (about 57 to 64 inches, or 145 to 163 cm), and their weight varies from 950 to 1,200 pounds (431 to 544 kg). They have a calm, cooperative temperament.

For years little attempt was made to develop a distinct breed. In 1940, however, the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) was organized, and in 1950 it was reorganized to include other Quarter Horse organizations. The AQHA controls the American Quarter Horse Stud Book and Registry. With more than 2.5 million horses registered in its stud book by the late 20th century, the AQHA was the largest horse breeders’ organization in the world.          

STORY

Foaled in Kentucky, a descendent of the great Sir Archy, Steel Dust came to Texas as a yearling in 1844. His progeny and his legend spread as cowboys drove Longhorns up the trails from Texas and opened the Great Plains to ranching. The name Steel Dust came to identify an entire breed of horse; they were called “Steeldusts,” the cowboy’s favorite kind. They were heavy-muscled horses, marked with small ears, a big jaw, remarkable intelligence and lightning speed up to a quarter of a mile. Steel Dust was an American Quarter Horse. He and his kind would achieve fame in proportions every bit as magnificent as that of the mythical Pegasus. Read more on our blog post.

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CARE GUIDE

If you live on a farm or you have a lot of property and plan to keep horses; it is vital that you make use of the natural resources available to you. There are lots of ways in which people with land can save a fortune when it comes to keeping their horse happy and healthy. Read about catering for your horse needs.

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