Having owned Traditional Irish Cobs all my life, I’ve often wondered what others in a similar position think of the breed, so here is my interview with fantastic Traditional Cob owner/breeder Trads Rock.
Who are you and What do you do?
Hello! We are Trads_rock and we have a few gypsy cobs. We show in-hand and ridden and when not showing, they have a varied life of hacking, jumping, looking after little humans and being the best support animals for us bigger humans.
In your opinion, What is the difference between a Traditional Cob and a Standard Cob? If there is a one...
I would say that the traditional cobs are shown in more natural state - more bone, apple bums and is the true heritage behind the gypsy cob, they can pull a cart for days!
What do you look for in a Traditional Cob?
We look for conformation, good bone structure, true to type and a good temperament.
A desirable colour & markings are just the icing on the cake if you already have the above.
What makes Traditional Cobs stand out from other horse breeds?
It is the nature of the gypsy cob - it is second to none! They are versatile and happy to do any job. Not to mention the mane feather and the overall "WOW" factor.
Do you find that in general Cobs are the underdogs of the horse world?
Yes, unfortunately we do. But things are most definitely changing and cobs are being recognised more and more, especially with societies such as TCGA.
Do you think that we need to highlight more on social media what cobs can do?
Yes - we always show our cobs on our Instagram, both out showing and at home so people can see just how good they are and just get to know them.
When it comes to breeding a Traditional Cob, would you use your own breeding methods or the scientific methods?
As a cob owner/breeder, we will be covering naturally using our stallions this year but will also be getting them dummy trained.
Overall, do you agree that cobs get a bad reputation for just being “cobby and lazy”?
Yes, all the time. People say they don't want a brain dead cob - however, cobs are far from that. On the contrary in fact...
Cobs can become whatever you want them to be! Mine would happily give a race track a go or take granny for a nice quiet ride there just so willing.
In the showing world, do you think cobs get the recognition they deserve? or are they overshadowed by the other breeds?
We think if you get a judge who knows cobs, your good - but sadly many times judges have admitted to us that they don't know what there looking for in a good cob. Of course if you have a TCGA judge, they know exactly what is true to type and then as always, it comes down to their preference.
If you had to choose between a sports horse and cob which would you go for and why?
For me it would always be a cob - they have big hearts, are super easy to work with and so much fun to be around - never a dull moment! However, with their manes and feather etc. they do take up time.
In your opinion, Are all cobs bombproof? Is it just their natural way?
Being quiet in nature is definitely in their breeding so choosing your cob and lines is very important. I have had feisty cobs but my three stallions from SD have the best temperaments of any cob I have ever met - I really can't fault them. Obviously we didn't breed lines back, as these are selective from the stud... we just fine tuned them. But with any animal, you get out what you put in - I can sit my 5 year old on any of the boys and he could ride them around... that's years of both selective breeding and training from myself.
So what we are trying to say is never judge a book by its cover - we may not be the most popular breed but we are one of the best. Traditional cobs are the most loyal, loving, compassionate and most of all snuggly, gentle giants. Cobs should never be underestimated and that’s why we love them!
Thank you Trads Rock for taking the time to chat. Check out their Instagram for more information!
Sally Turner aka @Boy_prince_diamond