Horse vs Mule

Talk about Horses and Mules.
UphillDoc
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Horse vs Mule

Postby UphillDoc » Mon Jul 05, 2010 8:34 pm

Horse or Mule...which would you recommed for a novice rider/owner, and why?

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Benny G » Mon Jul 05, 2010 9:01 pm

Horse. Horses are more forgiving to folks making mistakes. Mules are 1/2 donkey, and for MOST of them, that translates to total jackass. It's a whole lot easier to find a decent horse than to find a good mule. If you settle for anything less than a good mule, you're setting yourself up for dissapointment, and worse case senario, a hospital stay. When a person makes a mistake with a horse, in a couple of days everything is good in the eyes of the horse. When you make a mistake with a mule, that mule will NEVER forget that moment, no matter how major, or how trivial that mistake might seem. You have to start out working to gain the trust of a mule. If you ever breech that trust, or loose that trust, you might as well start over with a different mule. I know that I am making this sound dismal for ever entertaining the idea of riding a mule, but your question was from the stand point of being a novice around both horses and mules.

Now, with all of that being said, if you could get your hands on a mule like the 8 year old molly that was advertized on here a few days ago, you would never consider a horse - ever. Good luck.
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UphillDoc
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby UphillDoc » Mon Jul 05, 2010 9:56 pm

BennyG-Thanks for the response. Hope you wont mind a few more questions.

I always hear about the mules not being forgiving with mistakes, but never hear exactly what those mistakes might be. If they could get that 8 year old molly, wouldnt a novice still make the same mistakes?

How does the average mule move out compared to the average horse?

How does their ride compare to a gaited horse?

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Benny G » Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:59 pm

The mistakes--- I rode lots of mules that were at the very best-pieces of sh*t! A friend of mine wanted to change my mind toward mules, so he had me ride his excelent mule. I started looking for a good one. Well I have always ridden spoiled, bronc horses because they were cheaper to buy. With enough hard miles on them, I always ended up with good horses. I approched the mule deal with a similar attitude. I found a young (5 year old) mule that wasn't too mean, just had lots of folks buffaloed. I went to riding the hide off of her, and we were getting along pretty good. One day the wind was howling and she wasn't in the best spirits and kept throwing her head. I grew tired of her attitude and TAPPED her between the ears with my index and middle fingers. I thought nothing of it. Four days later I went out to catch her at 3:00 in the morning to go lion hunting. She was in a 40x40 corral, and it took me 1 1/2 Hours to get her caught. If I wasn't so hard headed I would have caught my gelding that was right there watching the show. I don't like to loose, and I knew that if I let her get away with that, she would be "trained" to act that way. That was the first sign that something was wrong, and we had issues for just over two years. She was laying for me for a long time, I just NEVER let her win, not once. Tody we're good, but it was a long, rough lesson. So, yes, you could still make mistakes, but with a mule of that caliber, the circumstances that lead to those mistakes don't necessarily present themselves the same way as with a knucklehead.

As for averages in traveling, in my opinion that's completely up to the rider. There are lazy mules just the same as there are lazy horses. What makes the difference is - who's in charge, anyway?


As for comparing to a gaited horse, get a gaited mule. I find that my mules tend to be more short coupled than horses, so you tend to be riding right over the steere axle. When a mule bucks, it's a lot rougher just because you are over thier front feet.
"What I really need is a system that when I push a button it will shock that dog there, when I push this other button I can shock the other dog over there, and a button that I can push to shock all twenty dogs at the same time!" - Clell Lee

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Mike Leonard » Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:46 pm

I can't add a dang thing to what this Benny G says other than from the cowboy seating section comes a great big AMEN!

Hey anybody hear of this Jon Kibler Guy? Heard he USE to be a lion hunter? Loved his mules but sold them all to Waleter or Wally Shades Kostinlonicko.
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UphillDoc
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby UphillDoc » Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:19 am

Thanks fellas, I appreciate the input!

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Mr.pacojack » Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:31 am

Mules are not for everyone. Today there are alot of real good mules. Yesteryear the were alot more bad ones. They would breed the nastiest mare to the nastiest jack and they got a nasty ole mule. Thus you have alot of guys like Benny and mike that do not have a good oppinion of mules.
Today we have quality mares being bred to quality jacks and producing Very High Quality mules.
Mules can not be cowboyed like a hores, if you do this you will never will the war or it will be a very long one if you do.
Like Benny said " he was too hard headed to let it go. I was watching a horse program on RDF TV and the ol hores trainer said," Everone thinks a mule is stubborn, but I believe a mule just lets the person have enough time to figure out what he is doing wrong" And if you have dealt with a mule you will understand that.
If something is not working, you will have to take a minute and rethink how to get it done. If you go at it with this in mind, you will get along with a mule just fine.
But just like with horses , there are rank ones.
I have rode alot of gaited mules and gaited horses but they are not for the mountains, they are fine on flat land but not for steep terrian. You still have to get the animal into the gait before you can get the ride that everyone talks about and that is pretty hard to achieve going up a steep trail.
I am not one of those guys that will tell you that a horse can not follow a mule but I will tell you that you will find very few of them that will, cuz the first fence we come to I will leave you.lol
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UphillDoc
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby UphillDoc » Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:52 am

pacojack-Would you recommend a mule for a novice?

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Mr.pacojack » Tue Jul 06, 2010 1:03 am

For a novice, I would recomend that you take your time and do your home work weather you buy a horse or a mule.
I think a good mule will take better care of the rider than a horse. But just like with dogs, people don't sell alot of good mules.
If you offered me $10,000 for my mule right now.....well ok I might take 10 grand. :wink:
There are alot of good and bad in both horses and mules. Today we have alot of good mule trainers that understand how to trian a mule and are doing a very good job. They pride themselfs on their training and pride themselfs on their reputation. These are the people I would buy a mule from.
Like I said mules are not for everyone. So my advise would be to find out if the rider can get along with a mule.
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby cory » Tue Jul 06, 2010 3:09 am

I think you have alot better chance of getting a nice gaited horse then you do getting a nice mule. I used to train horses full time & one year I took in 37 different mules that were mostly out of gaited mares and a high dollar jack. Out of 37 I only rode one that I would have bought. I have yet to see one that will travel in a running walk as long or as easy as a TWH or MFT. However if I did find one that could walk out at 6 or 7 miles an hour like some gaited horses can I would not hesitate to buy it.

If your a novice to horses and mules I would strongly recomend having someone with experience in both help you look for a mount that will work for you, and if you are dead set on a mule be prepared to spend alot of time looking for a good one.IMO
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby STUNTMAN » Tue Jul 06, 2010 7:56 pm

Doc-Solid advice. I thought you had one picked out lol.......
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby LCK » Wed Jul 07, 2010 11:28 am

Some advice from a fellow who has been getting into mules lately:

Find someone who uses mules and knows mules. Not someone who thinks they know mules, or have an opinion on mules, but someone who uses them hard and often and has for a long time.

Have this person help you find a good older mule who will teach you.

DO NOT get a mule that is green or just needs miles, it will not end well.

Let the old mule teach you what a good mule can do, and how a good mule likes to be treated.

I have learned a LOT about mules and the differences between a mule and a horse these past few years. I have been fortunate that I have been able to put to use the advise I am passing along and am very gratefull for it.

For following hounds off trail, I have found the mule to be very usefull and safe. I do have and ride horses, but I have learned to prefer the mule for the type of hunting I do.
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby trashmaster » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:40 pm

Find you a good ranch horse that has been born and broke in the mountains by real cowboys, they arent too expensive and dont spook easily. Might include a trip to southern Arizona or New mexico but would be worth it. Not that im against riding a mule but sometimes wonder who has more jackass in them, the mule or the rider.
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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby UphillDoc » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:25 am

Thanks fellas. Im still in the process of finding what suits me.
I have never sat on a mule and pretty much had them written off, but a few friends kept braggin them up, and tellin me to give one a try. Im going to try out my first one this weekend.
I have ridden enough cowboy quarter horses to know that they arent what Im looking for...great temperments and good in the hills, but about beat me to death riding them, almost had me whipped off horses all together... :cry: Just recently rode my first gaited horse (Peruvian Paso) and man was I suprised. Ground covering, smooth going SOBs. I had always heard the gaited horses were no good in the hills, so I asked the fellas that owned them about it. They laughed and we headed into some steep, rocky, ledgy, country and they moved like dang mountain goats. I laughed, and said if a mule or quarter horse can go someplace these cant, it will be doing it solo, cause I got no interest in finding out how they'd do it.
After riding these gaited horses I was convinced I could use a horse a bunch more than I have been, and that opens a bunch more country for hunting... :D I will be trying out about a half dozen different gaited horses over the next week and see if my buddies were a fluke or not.
Thanks again for all the input!

STUNTMAN-A friend of the family of the folks that had the Peruvian I was interested in was given first option on the sale, and took it... :evil:

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Re: Horse vs Mule

Postby Rangerbites » Thu Jul 08, 2010 7:15 pm

I just had the very best mule in the world pass. There are great mules out there , that will pack, you can shot around ,way sure footed, my daughter had been riding him for the last three years she just turned eight.Cookie was so good to her . We also have a great mare that you pack off of and shot off her back .She is bomb proof as far as helping hunt and pack and kids .The key is FINDING the good ones Horse or Mule. Shop around and try them out .Take the time to really get to know the animal or atleast the person who tranied it. I love and use both for our family's needs . Miss you cookie .

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