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Oldest Registered Paint Horse Dies at 41
The oldest registered horse in the American Paint Horse Association died in June 2023 at the age of 41 years and 3 months. Joy Doss, who had him bred from a prize-winning stallion and one of her brood mares, recognized early on that there was something special about him. She named him Ten because “he seemed like a perfect 10.”
“Ten was a quiet, easy-going horse. Nothing upset him,” Doss recalls.
At 2, he won in Trail and Western Pleasure events at the State Fair of Texas. At 3, Doss rode Ten as an outrider next to her team pulling a wagon during the Texas Sesquicentennial Wagon Train, and he helped stop more than one runaway team. At night, Ten stood over Doss as they slept under the stars. After watching her comb her hair several times, Ten picked up the comb in his teeth and tried to comb Doss’ hair.
“I had many offers from people who wanted to buy him, but I was just going to keep him,” Doss says.
When she taught riding, Ten was her lesson horse and he remained steadfast in all kinds of situations with inexperienced riders from spurs digging deep into his side to kids wrapping their arms around his legs.
By the time he was 39, Doss knew that he’d passed the longevity of most Paints, so she called the APHA. She learned that horses were “archived” after age 25, but the association put Ten back in their live file.
Doss celebrated with a birthday party, including funny hats and sweet horse treats for Ten, who was still in good condition.
That changed the following winter when a snowstorm kept Doss’ horses in their stalls for a week.
“Ten got claustrophobic, and he started fretting during the snowstorm,” Doss recalls.
His eyesight had dimmed, and Doss paired him with Dancer, a white mare. Ten stayed close to her by touching her with his nose, which seemed to comfort him.
Doss pampered Ten, with good horse feed and alfalfa leaves she pulled off stems because he only had a couple of teeth. She covered him with coats for different weather, and stuffed his ears with cotton and comforted him when neighbors shot off fireworks.
His appetite was good, and he especially enjoyed molasses, until a Sunday evening in June 2023. Doss realized it was his time to go and called the vet.
Ten is buried on Doss’ Sulphur Springs, Texas, ranch, and she misses the friend she had for four decades.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Joy Doss, 2489 County Rd. 2308, Sulphur Springs, Texas 75482 (ph 903-438-7670; joydoss11@gmail.com).

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2023 - Volume #47, Issue #6