Originally Posted by Addie
He sounds like the typical English horse that we hear so much about on this side of the pond. Even the Queen's family stopped hunting foxes and use the scent trail now. Why give up a perfectly good sport that gives exercise to both man and animal.
Everyone in most of the UK has had to stop hunting foxes and other live quarry with "dogs" (eg foxhounds, stag hounds, beagles, otter hounds, etc.,) since the bans in England and Wales in 2004 and in Scotland in 2002. Northern Ireland and the Irish republic don't have anti-hunting laws so they still have foxhunting.
The anti-hunting law is noble in intent but is convoluted in execution. As the Countryside Alliance put it "The Act makes it an offence to hunt a mouse with a dog but not a rat, you can legally hunt a rabbit but not a hare. You can flush a fox to guns with two dogs legally but if you use three it's an offence. You can flush a fox to a bird of prey with as many dogs as you like
Addie, Horse would be mortally offended to hear himself described as English. He's Irish
He's a breed called the Irish Draught Horse and came from Ireland when he was three. He isn't a heavy horse like a shire or Clydesdale and doesn't have hairy legs. The breed was developed as a farm all-rounder - pulling the plough and taking the farmer's wife to market in the trap in the week, taking the farmer hunting once or twice a week and the family to church on Sunday. They are noted for their intelligence, commonsense and gentleness and are amazing jumpers, which led to their use in the development of the Irish Sports Horse (formerly called the Irish Hunter in less PC days) which is a mixture of ID, Thoroughbred and Connemara pony.
Horse walks to heel like a dog, without a lead rope and does "stand and stay" while I walk away to fetch something I've forgotten, and he comes to call in the field. Love him to bits.
Sorry, I can bore for England about my lovely boy.