NFQHA was formed for the sole purpose of promoting and perpetuating the National Foundation Bred Quarter Horse. Each step taken since the inception of the National Foundation Quarter Horse Association, has been made with a commitment to these goals. It is the philosophy of NFQHA that by encouraging people to use and breed National Foundation Quarter Horses that the demand, and thus the future of these wonderful horses will be ensured. To that end, NFQHA is not just “breeder oriented”, or user and show oriented, but a combination of these. A balance between the reputable breeder and the owner that buys and uses these outstanding horses is the position we are striving for, as one relies on the other.
When Robert Denhardt formed AQHA in the early forties it was to preserve the bulldog type horse commonly referred to in those days as Steeldusts, or Bulldogs. These horses exhibited the unique traits of a low center of gravity (length of legs not exceeding the depth of the heart girth), exceptionally heavy muscling, powerful hindquarters, deep ‘V’ between the forelegs, good bone and foot, a quiet trainable disposition, and a high degree of intelligence and natural cow sense. These traits combined to set apart the “Bulldog” as a unique individual easily distinguished from other equine breeds.
That special horse has long endeared itself to its many loyal fans. The conformation that enabled the forerunner of todays Quarter Horse to leave the starting line in a colonial match race with such blazing speed was the same conformation that allowed the later Quarter Horse to catch and turn a cow with so little effort, and to stay sound doing it. The great mind of the early Quarter Horse allowed it to remain calm and cool after as many as 20 false starts in a race, thus remaining competitive. That disposition enables the Quarter Horse to mentally contend with being expected to perform a myriad of duties, and events. The quiet, intelligent National Foundation Quarter Horse can quickly “fire up” to catch a cow, and just as quickly return to a calm, quiet state, saving his (and his rider’s) energy, to complete a full day of hard work.
NFQHA’s show rules have been written with the goal of showcasing the working ability, and versatility, of the National Foundation Quarter Horse, and to provide a friendly, down to earth show atmosphere for National Foundation Quarter Horse owners. The emphasis is at all times on versatility, and no English events are sanctioned. The horses are to be shown in working condition, with natural manes and tails, and in servicable tack. Silver, glitter, and sequins are not allowed, and only the horse is judged, not the handler or rider. Because NFQHA promotes the using horse, blemishes and scars resulting from injury are not penalized.
NOTE: NFQHA is no longer sanctioning shows, but our rules and shows were copied by many organizations and were revolutionary.
To retain the unique and outstanding qualities of the National Foundation Quarter Horse, NFQHA encourages all its members to: “Breed the Quarter Horse Back into the Quarter Horse”.