VANNER explained among other things...
In the USA
today there exists multiple separate registries and different names for
one single breed of animal. There is absolutely
no difference between a "vanner" and a
"cob". These are simply different
names referencing one single breed of animal and this is proven 100 percent by DNA. There IS ABSOLUTELY NO DIFFERENCE. Those promoting this misrepresentation are doing so strictly to promote what they believe will propogate to more money on sales of a "vanner" versus a "cob". It's sad that as of 2012 this is still going on here in this country. Our breed needs a good solid single registry to unite all owners and get this breed known as the true multi use amazing athletic breed that it is. Many horses here in the USA are registered in both "cob" and "vanner" registries. What you call your horse is up to you as the owner however, it is proven that this is definitely one single animal breed developed by the travelers in the UK and European nations.
Every true purebred
gypsy cob reproduces true every time when bred to
another. The breed has always had a variance in
height normally ranging from 13hh to 16.2hh with
the vast majority standing between 14-14.2 hands.
This is simply due to the creation of this breed
being the pairing of the giant draft breeds with
the native pony breeds of the United Kingdom (UK) primarily the Dales and Fell.
This is ONE
single breed of horse and pony, always has been,
always will be. DNA and lineages have long since
dispelled this "vanner" as a "separate
breed" or somehow "elite subset of the
gypsy cob" myth. This is totally false. The
"cob" is absolutely in no way a "lesser"
animal than a "vanner", they are indeed exactly one and the same breed of animal. In any articles you have read that state "vanner" is an elite subset, this is unfortunately for an unknowing public a very misguided attempt at marketing.
Cob is indeed
the normal term used when describing these horses
and ponies in the UK and European nations. "Tinker"
is also a large terminology outside of the UK. In
many countries outside of the UK, "Tinker"
is the terminology for "Gypsy". The word "Tinker" is not used in the UK where it is considered derogatory to the travelers.
Gypsies, as we here in the USA call the group of people prefer the term traveler. Terms you will find the HORSE BREED noted under are: Cob, Irish Cob, Tinker, Irish Tinker, Romany Cob, Gypsy Cob, Gypsy Vanner, Traditional Cob, Coloured Cob, Backy and Blattie.
A BIT OF
HISTORY ON THE BREED: In the 1980's and 1990's outside
of the UK "Tinker" associations were abundant
overseas as the horses gained great popularity with
the "non-traveler" communities due to
their multiple discipline capabilities and fabulous temperament. Inside the
UK Coloured breed associations and registries began
registering the cobs as separate divisions and they
began to be shown heavily by non-traveler owners.
Non-travelers would most often shave all of their
feathering off as they did not wish to be associated
with the travelers. The breeds endurance is legendary
and once their jumping ability was discovered, fox hunters
everywhere enjoyed crosses or purebreds of the traditional cobs
for the sport.
to what is on large trader sites on the web, the
legs of the well conformed gypsy horse or pony are
to be as straight as possible. These are not to
mimic a large giant draft "pulling" horse.
The hope for the overseas breeders of the gypsy
cobs is to have produced an athletic "all around"
competitive creature that can excel at multiple
disciplines. Common sense applies. Conformation is conformation!
in multiple countries, it did not take long before
people were in awe of the breeds gentle nearly unflappable
personality and their athletic ability when they
were working with a well conformed animal. Their
extremely high level of intelligence makes them
a trainers dream horse. They are intuitive and willing
by nature, in ten years with the breed, I have never experienced any that did not want to work with you, be with you.
AND REGISTRIES: Overseas and in the UK there exists
both coloured horse and pinto registries that denote
sections for a separate breed standard and show
standards for the gypsy cobs. In the early 2000's
the old "Tinker" associations all joined
forces and became branches of the "Irish Cob
Society" in an effort to unite the breed AND
unite the Studbooks and Breeding records worldwide.
Many of our horses here at Emerald Winds Farm came from these original old registries and all of our primary breeding stock were premium registered.
here in the USA, although Pinto and Coloured horse
associations and groups exist, the gypsy cobs are
disallowed due to their draft heritage. It would
be wonderful for the breed if we could get to take
part in established Pinto and Colored Horse Association
show systems. For some reason, the USA feels differently
about draft heritage than overseas registries do. To date, only open shows, draft horse shows, and many Friesian Associations have allowed us to participate. Getting a "newer" breed started in the USA is quite an undertaking as we are so vast the horses even at numbers around 3000 are spread out across the country.
many horses and ponies here in the USA are double
or triple registered with all multiple USA breed organizations,
both as"cobs" and "vanners" and some as "drum horses" .
This issue is extremely confusing for newcomers.
This is also very costly for the horse owners and
somewhat stressful as the rules and regulations
are all a bit different amongst all three USA registries.
Today, in the USA it takes only a payment
to have your horse registered as a "vanner"
with the vanner registry as well as a payment to
have your horse registered as a "cob"
with any of the other registries for
HOW DID THIS
CONFUSION HAPPEN? Naming conventions from country
to country unfortunately were not in sync simply
because no country overseas wishes to denote the
travelers as a member of their community. The travelers
are an entire culture without a country.
to this very day the travelers are truly shunned
by non-travelers in the UK in such a way that it is very difficult
to even imagine here in the United States any longer.
I have witnessed this firsthand and was totally upset at what I have seen. Segregation exists on a huge level overseas in the
UK and European nations and due to that fact, whether
or not these Travelers themselves are the horse
culture and the true originators of this wonderful
breed, these nations shunned both the travelers,
their culture and their horses for many generations.
This breed IS their pride and their heritage. Great
Grandfathers and Great Uncles will sit by the fires
and tell you tales of how they created the breed
and the horses they remember so well. Did every
horse have a name?!** Certainly not! (This is another
tidbit made up for marketing here in the USA) But
they will remember "the stallion" or "the
mare" and tell you its behavior, its breeding
ability, its stamina. The true breeder families
will tell you why they wanted to pair "this
mare of theirs" to "that stallion"
and what they hoped to breed forward from the pairing.
The bulk breeders will remember which stallion was
in with his mares during which season and then pulled
out for anothers mares. The true Travelers society
IS a horse culture at its best unlike anything here in the USA today.
overseas is why the breed though so abundant was
and still is today called by different terms in
so many countries. This is also unfortunately why
when marketed here in the USA, the existing "traditional
cob" was renamed and marketed under lovely
stories portraying a gentile and bohemian existence and called "vanner".
The simple truth is, many of the travelers have extremely
a people that can be the loveliest family in the
world, church going, hard working, raising and loving
their children, trying to teach their children right
from wrong, and honest folks, and like any other
culture, a few bad apples have given the entire
group of people a bad reputation. As within any
culture regardless of what it is, there are good
and bad. The good does not seem to be noticed overseas. It is NOT a charmed existence. This
is a culture that is unique and depends upon one
another for almost everything one can imagine.
is a lovely term and a great marketing slogan here
in the USA. "Vanner" however, was not
ever a term used in the UK to denote this beautiful
breed of horse. The term "vanner" mentioned
in a pub full of travelers is likely to have you
thrown bodily out the door in the UK as it is an
insulting reference to any horse of true traveler
breeders in the UK.
As the second
breeding farm in the USA Emerald Winds has been
involved in this breed for a decade and have
watched all of the changes in awe. For almost the
first five years we were involved, there were all
of 4 farms doing any serious breeding. The numbers
stayed under 40 horses until quantity horse traders
got involved. Because of the traders, the numbers
have escalated in recent years. It is nice that
people have somewhat fallen in love with the allure
of the breed however there has been a huge downside.
Unfortunately today for our breed there exists a
somewhat "puppy mill" mentality and people
are over breeding and assuming every colt born should
be a stallion. The true reality is that one colt
in thousands should be a stallion and faults are
hereditary. Horses are not a "get rich quick
scheme". Not unless you simply do not care
about what you produce nor what you sell through.
THE USA: In the very near future, breeding stock
inspections will take place to aid all gypsy horse
owners here in the USA in safeguarding the perpetuation
of this the unique breed that we love. Inspections
have been in place in overseas registries for over
20 years. Stranger our senior stallion was done
in the early 1980's receiving Premium and Supreme.
In his registry overseas at that time the German
Friesian Breeding manager had established both the
breed standards and the inspection rules and regulations
which included the full length stallion inspections
that we see Friesian Stallions being put through
today to achieve breeding approval. Stranger was
the only Gypsy horse to pass in the round and scored
a 38 out of a possible 40 points achieving a score
higher than most Friesians of the day. He went on
to win breeding awards for his offspring and is
a noted sire both overseas and here in the USA.
traditional coloured cob exhibits specific traits.
These are and will always be "the traditional
cobs" of European and UK nations. It is very
unfortunate for this breed that in the last ten
years many crosses have indeed been sold through
to the USA by large scale quantity horse traders
as "purebreds". Many "famous"
lines advertised are simply fabricated out of thin
air. To that end, this breed needs your support.
The breed needs one solid foundation here in the USA with
a united group of ethical breeders and enthusiasts
all united toward one goal, producing the best conformation,
the healthiest, and the gentlest animals we can
while stressing for and maintaining the correct
We need people
that will work only "for the betterment of
the breed" to improve the breeding stock, to
improve the education, to promote the correct lines
and ethical breeding practices, grading / rating
standards, and ethical business practices. A Breed
Registry is to be established "for the breed
of animal" to safeguard it and to perpetuate
proper type, from the heart, NOT for any other reason
and certainly not for profit of an individual or
self perceived prestige.