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23 February 2019   
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English Breeds of Horse

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The Cob is not a breed but a well-established type. Though it may sometimes be up to 15.3 h.h., in the show ring it must not exceed 15.1h.h.. It has an intelligent small head set on an elegantly arched neck, strong sloping shoulders, a short back with powerful loins, broad, deep body and ample well-muscled hind quarters; strong limbs with plenty of bone and open feet. The cob is capable of carrying a heavyweight rider and it's kind, well mannered, willing nature, make it ideal for an elderly or more nervous rider. It also makes an excellent hunter, capable of carrying a man's weight all day. Though it is not built for great speed, it should have active paces, be able to gallop and jump well.

Many of the best cobs are produced by accident, though Irish Draught blood is often successfully used, particularly when mixed with thoroughbred. Although nowadays the cob is used mainly as a riding horse, it was once used as an all-purpose horse, performing equally well in harness or under saddle. In the show ring they are exhibited in two weight classes; as lightweights capable of carrying up to 14 stone and as heavyweights carrying over 14 stone. There are also working cob classes, where a course of jumps is set out and judged in a similar way to a working hunter class. Traditionally the cob has a hogged mane (clipped short). It used to have a docked tail before it was made illegal in Britain in 1948 to stop this cruel practice, under the Docking and Nicking Act.

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