Rancho Santa Vicenta
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q. Is it true that the Peruvian Paso is the world's smoothest riding horse?
- A. That is a question that is subject to opinion. I have ridden a few Tennessee Walkers that were equally as smooth as a Peruvian Paso but they lacked the brio and carriage of the Peruvian. I would say that in general, yes, they are probably the world's smoothest.
- Q. Is it true that the gait is passed on to 100% of their offspring.
- A. No. Although it is passed on the majority of the time (99.95%), like any other genetically passed trait, if you continually bred poor gaited individuals with poor gaited individuals, you would eventually lose the gait. I have only ever seen 3 non-gaited purebred Peruvian Pasos and these were from very poor stock.
- Q. Does the Peruvian Paso make a good trail horse?
- A. YES! The Peruvian Paso makes an excellent trail horse. They are smooth, level headed, sure footed and sensible!
- Q. Is it true that they 'never' need shoes?
- A. NO! Many 'old time 'purists' would like you to believe this but it simply is not true. While a Peruvian Paso does have exceptionally strong hooves, a horse is a horse and a hoof is a hoof. If they are to be ridden on hard, rocky terrain they need shoes like any other breed.
- Q. What sizes and colors do they come in?
- A. Generally they range anywhere from 14. to 15.2 hands tall although there are individuals both over and under this height. Because of their elegant carriage, a 15. hand horse may seem to be taller than he actually is. They come in all solid colors such as bay, black, buckskin, seal brown, chestnut, liver, palomino, grulla, roan, grey, and are also able to be sabino or overo marked in their purebred form. The tobiano gene is non-existent in the purebred Peruvian and many people are breeding tobianos in the 3/4 and 7/8 versions.
- Q. There has been a lot written about the disorder of DSLD being linked to the Peruvian Paso. Is this something I should be concerned about?
- A. Yes and No. As long as you keep in mind that correct, sound conformation MUST take precedence over all else (although you obviously MUST have gait as well), then you should be okay. Since this disorder is directly related to conformational defects such as excessively long pasterns, pasterns that dip below horizontal while under saddle, post leggedness, and straight stifles, if you stay away from these defects you will most likely never have a problem. Look to breeders that breed for strength and that have sound individuals in their breeding programs in their late teens and early twenties. This is a good sign,
- Q. What is the price range on these horses?
- A. They can range anywhere from $1,500. for gelding quality weanlings, all the way to $100,000. for top show and breeding stallions. The best bet is to look around. Expect to pay between $5,000. and $10,000. for well trained, sound, trail horses.
- Q. Why are they so expensive?
- A. A lot of time and money goes into producing a strong, well trained, quality individual. We basically tell people "You get what you pay for" and quality is not cheap.
- Q. Are they a good investment financially?
- A. They are an EXCELLENT investment! While many other breeds are floundering financially, the Peruvian has maintained a great market and more and more people are becoming involved due to the quick returns on their investments in breeding stock.
- Q. What should I look for in buying my first Peruvian Paso?
- A. Look for a strong horse that is well trained and smooth to ride. If you are buying breeding stock, check the family lines, sire, dam, etc... for soundness, gait, and conformation. NEVER buy any horse without a veterinary pre-purchase exam unless you are made aware of the horses defects upfront and you are okay with them. (ie... many times a great broodmare might not pass a soundness exam due to injury, age, etc... but might be an exceptional breeding animal) Take into consideration what the horses intended use is before buying.
- Q. I love grey horses but I have been told to stay away from greys as the color is discriminated against in the showring. Is this true?
- A. Although many judges do have color preferences, I have never found an American judge that actually would not place a horse due to it's color. Unfortunately, I can not say the same for all their Peruvian counterparts. Grey horses are making a comeback as evidenced by both the 1996 PPHRNA and AAOBPPH Nationals as well as the PPHRNA 1997 Nationals where several grey horses won National Titles!
- Q. What types of dispositions do they have?
- A. Peruvian Pasos have wonderful dispositions and are very people oriented. They are however considered a "hot" breed and some family strains are "hotter" than others. Look around until you find the type of personality that suits you.
I hope that this has helped to answer some of the more frequently asked questions I have received. If you have any additional questions you would like answered, please submit them to the e-mail address listed below.
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