December 08, 2008 | | Comments 0

Draft Cross Horses

Understanding of Draft Cross Horses

A draft horse is a large horse bred for power and strength. There are actually many draft horse breeds and while they all share similar characteristics, they participate in various kinds of activities. Draft horses are widely utilized for ploughing and other farm work. They are also widely employed in crossbreeding methods, generally to light riding breeds like the Thoroughbred to generate sport horses. While the majority of draft horse breeds are utilized for intense tasks such as driving, there are draft cross horses that can be exceptional riding horses and show competitors under the saddle.

Draft Cross Horse

Draft Cross Horse

Draft Horses are Built for Work

Draft horses are quite familiar breeds due to their lofty physique and brawny body type. Most of the time, their shoulder has a more aligned structure, allowing for more vertical action and conformation that is most fitting for dragging heavy loads. They also have the predisposition to have backs that have reduced length with sturdy hindquarters, which is great for pulling. Furthermore, draft horse breeds often have a heavy bone structure and lots of feathering on their lower legs. However, there are also many other draft cross horses that don’t have feathering on the lower legs.

Crossbreeding Draft Horses

Draft horses mixed with light riding horses develop the height and weight to resulting draft cross horses, and may further advance their strength and span of movement. Fascinating results usually occur when animals are crossbred. For instance, we may see several variations in the appearance of puppies whose parents are of different breeds. On the other hand, we may also see crossbred puppies that are surprisingly uniform. These occurrences could be possible in the crossbreeding of horses. However, a big difference is the fact that mares normally give birth to just one offspring each year. This means it is more challenging to notice results in draft cross horses.

The dissimilarity we can literally see between two types of horse is known as the phenotype. What we can observe underneath is a genetic base known as the genotype. The genotype establishes the phenotype. In crossbreeding, there is the probability of substantial variation in both genotype and phenotype, even between young from an identical pair of parents.

For instance, the genotype of a 75 percent Brabant horse could differ between 50 and 100 percent, resulting in the 75 percent Brabant designation with just an average assessment of the genetic type of the crossbred. This eventually leads to the fact that about half or more of Brabant-American Belgian mixed horses will not appear similar to each other.

Draft cross horses have become an essential in the creation of a wide range of Warmblood horse breeds. By mixing Hot Blooded animals such as the Thoroughbred or Arabian draft horse, more size, strength and sturdiness have been applied to draft cross horses. Draft horse breeds that may ensue draft cross horses include the Clydesdale, American Cream, Belgian, Ardennes, Breton, Boulonnais, Irish Draught, Dole Gudbrandsdal, Shire, Mulassier, Percheron and Suffolk Punch. Draft cross horses have been winning competitors even in international FEI competition to the Olympic Equestrian level.

Harness horses are also generally draft cross horses. They are lighter versions of the heavy draft horse. These draft cross horses include the Friesian, Cleveland Bay and Hackney.

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