IRISH COB STUD BOOK PRINCIPLES
1. Objectives of an organization approved to maintain an Irish Cob Stud Book.
To protect, preserve and improve the Irish Cob breed in it's traditional form and type through the following means.
• To inspect animals with a view to entry into the Supplementary Section of the Stud Book.
• To inspect stallions, entered in the Main Section and Supplementary Section of the Stud Book, with a view to approving suitable stallions for inclusion in the Selective Breeding Programme.
• To inspect mares, entered in the Main Section for the Stud Book, with a view to approving suitable mares for inclusion in the Selective Breeding Programme.
2. Breeding objectives.
To preserve and protect the Irish Cob breed in it's traditional form and type, as a compact, powerful, yet agile working horse (a cold blood). The Irish Cob is classified as a working draught horse (as opposed to the carriage horse, which may be clean legged - warm blood type). The Irish Cob breed is classified as a working draught horse, so as to ensure that the breed is never allowed to become light of bone, which would also have the effect of losing one of the breeds renowned characteristics, the leg feathering. Although described as a 'draught' type animal, breeding organizations shall ensure that the Irish Cob breed also remains a dual purpose animal, by retaining the docile character attributed to the cold blood breeds, while retaining the breed's agile and versatile capabilities, which are ideally suited to a number of leisure riding pursuits.
3. Characteristics of the Breed.
THE IRISH COB BREED STANDARD
GENERAL APPEARANCE ‐ The Irish Cob is compact and powerful, ample both in muscle and bone, yet, with an ability to perform as a good all‐purpose animal. Some Irish Cobs tend to be more "stocky" than others. The Irish Cob is well balanced and proportioned, standing straight and square and offering an imposing appearance.
TOPLINE ‐ The head, which should be held proudly should be carried on a powerful and arched, well "set on", neck. The neck should appear to "carry on" through good withers and to finish at the start of the back (this feature should be particularly evident in stallions). The back which should be short and straight should slope gently upwards to a well muscled croup (the back bone/spine or the hip bones should not be apparent). The croup, which is quite high and generous should have both croup muscles well defined, the top of the quarters being exceptionally well muscled, broad and ample. The angle of the spine from the croup to the tail should slope gently downwards and should not be exaggerated, this allows for a high, well "set on", tail and contributes to good well rounded quarters.
BONE ‐ Irish Cobs are from medium weight to heavy weight, (Some allowance in bone measurement can be made for mares and
IN MOTION - Irish Cobs with their unique action, luxuriant hair and feathering and the large range of colours available, combine to present a beautiful and varied sight to see when turned out at their best, particularly when in motion.
TEMPERAMENT ‐ The Irish Cob should possess a docile and willing nature, with a friendly disposition towards humans and other
animal species. Displays of aggressive and threatening behaviour such as ears back, kicking, biting, rearing and not being under control of the handler, will result in expulsion from Approval Inspection and the Show Ring.
HEIGHT - under 170cms
HEAD ‐ should be straight, handsome and in proportion to the rest of the horse. The forehead should be broad and the muzzle, jaw and cheek should be generous.
MOUTH ‐ should have a level bite.
EYES - should be quite bold, open and set well apart.
EARS ‐ should be neat and well set on.
NECK ‐ should be compact, but not too short and should be generously muscled including the crest (stallion's necks should be particularly well muscled and crested).
SHOULDERS ‐ should be ample, powerful and sloping.
WITHERS ‐ should be of average protrusion or height and should be encased in plenty of muscle and flesh.
CHEST ‐ should be powerful, well muscled and not too broad or narrow.
BACK ‐ should be short, straight, well covered in muscle and flesh and slope gently upwards towards the croup.
HINDQUARTERS AND HIND LEGS - The hindquarters should be very generous, well rounded, broad and powerful with a well muscled high croup. The second thigh should also be very generous, quite long and well coupled to good straight powerful hocks. The hind legs should be well boned and muscled.
BODY ‐ should be short and compact with ribs well sprung to barrel shape.
FORELEGS ‐ should be powerful and not too short. There should be a good length of well muscled forearm and generously boned shins.
KNEES AND HOCKS ‐ should be well developed and of generous dimensions but should be in balance with the proportions of the horse.
FETLOCK JOINTS ‐ should match the other joints in power, size and build.
PASTERNS ‐ should also be of sufficient bone and not too long (straight or over angled pasterns are a fault).
HOOVES ‐ should be well shaped, neat and of a size capable of carrying the frame of the horse without stress.
LEG HAIR/FEATHERING ‐ Leg hair/feathering is a characteristic and decorative feature of the Irish Cob breed. This is especially prominent in the heavier Irish Cobs. However, the amount of leg hair/feathering present may vary considerably, particularly in the case of medium weight Irish Cobs. Leg hair/feathering, should at the very least, fall from the back of the knees and hocks, down to a thick covering of hair/feathers on the heels. Leg hair/feathering should also fall over the front of the hoof, from at least the coronet.
MANE AND TAIL ‐ The mane and tail should be luxuriant and capable of growing to a substantial length.
MOVEMENT - Movement should appear sound and free from obvious hereditary defects.
COLOUR - The following colours are considered most typical.
• All solid colours including black, bay, brown, chestnut, palomino, grey and roan.
• All solid colours including black, bay, brown, chestnut, palomino, grey and roan, which contain white body markings.
White body markings are measured in percentages and exclude the head, legs and underbelly.
Irish Cobs which have white body markings are described as COLOURED.
Irish Cobs which have white markings on the underbelly are described as SPLASHED or BLAGDON.
4. Division of the Stud Book and conditions for entering the Stud Book.
The Stud Book is comprised of a Main Section and a Supplementary Section.
DIVISION OF THE STUD BOOK
MAIN ELITE STALLION CLASS
Males which were entered in the Main Basic Register and have been approved for inclusion in the Selective Breeding Programme.
Females which were entered in the Main Basic Register and have been approved for inclusion in the Selective Breeding Programme.
MAIN BASIC REGISTER
Males and females, where the sire is entered in the Main Elite Stallion Class, or the Supplementary Elite Stallion Class and the dam is entered in the Main Elite Mare Class.
Males and females, where the sire is entered in the Main Elite Stallion Class, or the Supplementary Elite Stallion Class and the dam is entered in the Main Basic Register, or the Supplementary Basic Register.
Males and females, where the sire is entered in the Main Basic Register, or the Supplementary Basic Register and the dam is entered in the Main Elite Mare Class.
Males and females, where the sire is entered in the Main Basic Register, or the Supplementary Basic Register and the dam is entered in the Main Basic Register, or the Supplementary Basic Register.
CROSS BREEDING PROGRAMME
Males and females of the listed breeds mentioned which have been selected to take part in the cross breeding programme.
SUPPLEMENTARY ELITE STALLION CLASS
Stallions which were entered in the Supplementary Basic Register and have been approved for inclusion in the Selective Breeding Programme.
SUPPLEMENTARY BASIC REGISTER
Males, females and geldings which do not meet the requirements for entering the Main Section, but which have been judged to conform to the Irish Cob Breed Standard.
Conditions for entering the studbook
THE MAIN SECTION
To qualify for entry into the Main Section of the Stud Book an animal must : -
1. (a) Have both parents entered in the Main Section, or,
(b) Have both parents entered in the Supplementary Section, or,
(c) Have one parent entered in the Supplementary Section and one parent entered in the Main Section.
The following breeds mentioned are allowed to take part a cross breeding programme.
Males and females: The Irish Cob Part Bred, the Irish Cob Crossbred, the Irish Piebald and Skewbald, the Skewbald and Piebald, the Irish Sport Horse, the Gypsy Cob, the Coloured Horse, the Tinker.
These listed breeds must have been judged to conform to the Irish Cob Breed Standard. The inspection procedure will be the same as for animals seeking registration in the Supplementary Section.
Selected females only: The Shire, the Clydesdale and the Welsh Cob.
These listed breeds must be under 170cm and also and have been judged to conform closely to the Irish Cob Breed Standard and to be of benefit to the Irish Cob selective/improvement breeding programme.
The ICS reserves the right to include additional breeds in the cross breeding programme.
2. Be identified as a foal at foot in accordance with the rules of the stud book, which should at least require
the covering certificate. Where an animal has not been identified as a foal at foot, a declared dam must be
verified through DNA analysis. Where there is no covering certificate, a declared sire must be verified
through DNA analysis.
THE SUPPLEMENTARY SECTION
To qualify for entry into the Supplementary Section an animal must:‐
1. (a) Be identified in accordance with the stud book rules which should at least require the covering
certificate. Where the sire only is being declared, the sire must be verified through DNA analysis. Where
the dam only is being declared, the dam must be verified by a Veterinary Surgeon on a form similar to ICS
(b) Be judged to conform to the Breed Standard.
(c) Have a minimum performance as laid down in the Stud Book Rules.
UPGRADING TO ELITE STALLION STATUS
Males entered in the Main Basic Register, or, the Supplementary Basic Register having reached the age of two years are eligible for inspection with a view to approval for inclusion in the Irish Cob "Elite Class" Selective Breeding Programme.
Males which fail to be approved following inspection shall remain in the Main Basic Register, or, the Supplementary Basic Register, but shall continue to be eligible to seek "Elite Class" status.
In order to attain "Elite Class" status stallions must pass inspection by at least two qualified inspectors. Main Section stallions shall also be required to pass an examination carried out by a qualified veterinary surgeon.
UPGRADING TO ELITE MARE STATUS
Females entered in the Main Basic Register having reached the age of two years are eligible for inspection with a view to approval for inclusion in the Irish Cob "Elite Class" Selective Breeding Programme.
Females which fail to be approved following inspection shall remain in the Main Basic Register, but shall continue to be eligible to seek "Elite Class" mare status.
In order to attain "Elite Class" mare status, mares must pass inspection by at least two qualified inspectors.
5. The system for recording pedigree.
• Where the sire and dam are declared the Covering Certificate at least is required.
• Where a sire only is declared the sire must be verified through DNA analysis.
• Where the dam only is declared the dam must be verified by a Veterinary Surgeon on form similar to ICS form ICS03.
• Where pedigree is verified by DNA analysis, all DNA samples should be collected by Qualified Veterinary Surgeons. DNA samples should not pass through the Stud Book administration office. The DNA Laboratory profile number of all DNA samples shall be recorded on the stud book Administration Database. The organization shall reserve the right at all times to DNA test any animal entered in the Stud Book, or, to DNA test is any animal for which an application has been made for entry into the Stud Book.
6. The system of identifying Irish Cobs entered in the Stud Book.
• The organization shall ensure that identification documents are issued in respect of all equides entered in the stud book in accordance with EC Regulation 504/2008.
• The organization shall ensure that equine identification documents issued from 1st July 2009 include an ISO standard microchip number which when read can be linked to the Unique Equine Life Numbers (UELN).
• Registered names shall not be duplicated within the stud book. Breeders may make an animal's name unique by attaching their own Prefix or Affix to the name of an animal being entered in the Stud Book, provided that, such Prefix or Affix has not already been recorded in the Stud Book as having been used by another breeder.
7. Lineages entered in one or more other stud‐books, where necessary.
Irish Cobs entered in an approved Irish Cob Stud Book may be entered into any other Irish Cob Stud Book into a section and class according to the animal's merits.
8. Non‐discriminatory treatment of breeders.
Organizations shall not discriminate against breeders. Animals which conform to the requirements of Commission Decision 96/78/EC are eligible and entitled to registration into any Irish Cob Stud Book.