Items

Forums
 
What You Can Learn From Your OTTB Tattoo
 By Winniefield Park   •   5th Jun 2014   •   10,049 views   •   2 comments
What You Can Learn From Your OTTB TattooOff The Track Thoroughbreds can make great riding horses. In North America, horses that are headed for a racing career are lip tattooed for identification. (Many other breeds are lip tattooed as well.) Sometimes owners tattoo their horses with a DIY type kit, or they may call in a professional.

When the horse is freshly tattooed, the letters and numbers are easy to read. Over time, however, the tattoo fades or the inner lip may become pigmented and make the tattoo difficult to read. If your horseís tattoo is only a few years old, it may still be quite distinct. All you will need to do is hold your horseís upper lip and roll it back revealing the tattoo on the underside of the lip that would normally lay against the top front teeth.

If the numbers and letters of the tattoo become faded or muddled, there is a way of making them easier to read, that involves a digital camera. Have someone hold the lip back and take a photo of the tattoo. Using photo-editing software on your computer, adjust the color, contrast and other controls on the picture to enhance the outline of the tattoo. This may make the tattoo easier to read. A veterinarian or horse identifier can help, but there will be a cost.

Related: Disturbing Pictures Of Ex Racehorse Left To Die And Our Journey Back
Related: God's Gift To Me - My First Horse
Related: Owning a Racehorse Ė End of Season Update!
Related: It All Starts Here - A Visit To A Racehorse Auction
Related: Retraining a Racehorse Ė First Dressage Show

Once youíve got the tattoo numbers and letters, what can you learn? The letter which appears at the beginning of the tattoo indicates the year in which the horse was foaled. So a horse with a Q at the beginning of the tattoo would have been born in 1987 or 2013. Because the alphabet has 26 letters, the chart starts over again every 27 years. It would be easy just by looking at the horse to decide which decade it was born in. If the horse has only four numbers in the tattoo, it will be older than twenty-five years. If there is a * before the letter, that indicates it was born outside of North America.

A 1971 1997
B 1972 1998
C 1973 1999
D 1974 2000
E 1975 2001
F 1976 2002
G 1977 2003
H 1978 2004
I 1979 2005
J 1980 2006
K 1981 2007
L 1982 2008
M 1983 2009
N 1984 2010
O 1985 2011
P 1986 2012
Q 1987 2013
R 1988 2014
S 1989 2015
T 1990 2016
U 1991 2017
V 1992 2018
W 1993 2019
X 1994 2020
Y 1995 2021
Z 1996 2022

You can also find out the horseís pedigree from the tattoo. For no charge, you can sign up and use The Jockey Club's free Tattoo Identification Services available at http://registry.jockeyclub.com and research your horseís pedigree. You may also be able to find your horseís former owners, provided they updated the horseís information with the Jockey Club each time the horse was sold. Not all owners will do this however, so there may be some gaps in the information.

Did your horse race? You may be able to find out your horseís race records. Some horses are tattooed but did not race, so turning up blank race stats isnít unusual. It just means that something sidelined your horseís race career.

A lot of Thoroughbreds donít have lip tattoos. They may have been in training to race, but some circumstance changed the plans their owners had for them. Some may not have shown a decent turn of speed, or will to run. Some may have had soundness or health issues. There are many reasons why Thoroughbreds donít make it to the track. Some estimates state that as few as 1 in 100 TBs born to race ever actually run in a race.
Horse News More PB Articles About:  brand,
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Winniefield Park
Valkyrie   MOD 
That's interesting :) NZ TBs don't have lip tattoos. They are branded on their near shoulder with the stud brand, as shown on these yearlings.

On their off shoulder they have two sets of numbers as shown here on the NZ-bred stallion So You Think. The top number is simply the order in which the horse was registered by the breeder or stud. The bottom number is a single digit and is the last digit of the year the horse was born. So '0' could mean 1990, 2000, 2010 etc. You can see from So You Think that he was born in 2006.
  Jun 6, 2014  •  10,288 views
 
Winniefield Park  
A shoulder brand would probably be more clear as the horse ages. The lip tattoos can get really difficult to read over time.
  Jun 10, 2014  •  10,152 views
 Related Horse News
What You Can Learn From Your OTTB Tattoo
5th Jun 2014   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Off The Track Thoroughbreds can make great riding horses. In North America, horses that are headed for a racing career are lip tattooed for identification. (Many other breeds are lip tattooed as well.) Sometimes owners tattoo thei ...
Branding and Identifying Your Horse
10th May 2014   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Have you ever thought of what you would do if your horse were lost or stolen? Itís not something you can really plan for, beyond locking up your gates or barns and making sure your horse is always kept safe and secure. However, if ...
Horse Branding 101
20th Aug 2017   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
There are two types of brands. For freeze branding, a branding iron is set in dry ice and alcohol to bring the metal down to a scaldingly low temperature. The frozen brand is set against the horseís skin. Depending on how long th ...
Equine RFID Tagging
19th Sep 2017   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
1While pets and other livestock have been carrying microchips for quite some time, using RFID for horses has been a little slower to take off. Back in 2007, the United States Department of Agriculture approved a microchip implant ...
  View More PonyBox Related Horse Articles
 More News by Winniefield Park
A Peak into PonyBox Barn Fox Tail Forge n Farriery
7th Mar 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Fox Tail Forge n Farriery has been a Ponybox stable since October of 2018 and sits within the top 100 stable rankings at number 72 as of this writing. This stable is owned by a player who has actually been playing since about 2007 ...
Horses Rescued from Collapsed Texas Arena
6th Mar 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Frigid winter weather has wreaked havoc on the southern States and has left many without electricity, water and transportation leaving animals and humans in peril. Four horses had to be rescued when an arena collapsed under the we ...
Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act Signed into Law
2nd Mar 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
In a move that many hope will help prevent accidental horse deaths on the racetracks of America, The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act was signed into law in late December 2020. The law aims to standardize drug testing, enforce ...
Thoroughbred and Canadian Warmblood Top Jumpers on PonyBox
28th Feb 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Two breeds are currently holding the highest jump records on PonyBox. The Thoroughbred and Canadian Warmblood's are taking the top spots with vengeance and appear unstoppable. ...
Teen Rescues Girls from Pond After Horse Alerts of Danger
27th Feb 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Oliver normally enjoys being groomed by his young owner, but when she noticed Oliver getting restless she wondered at his was unusual behavior. It wasnít until that she noticed some neighbor kids playing on a frozen pond that she ...
PonyBox Highest Earners
21st Feb 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Itís no surprise that the top-winning mare and stallion are also Ponyboxís highest earners. Or, that the highest-winning stable also produces many of the most successful jumpers. Here is a look at the outstanding earners on Ponybo ...
Hard to Watch as Man Jumps into Horse Race Final Stretch
20th Feb 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Lots of sports fans pay top dollar to buy seats that put them almost in the middle of the action. But this race fan took getting into the action a little too seriously. It was a lot of risk for an experience that lasted a moment. ...
The Horses of the Shetland Islands
15th Feb 2021   |   General   |   Winniefield Park
Take a quick armchair trip to see pastoral landscapes, otter crossings and adorable, furry Shetland ponies! This travel video highlights some of the sights on the archipelago that makes up the Shetland Islands. This is the native ...
  View All News by Winniefield Park
 
©2002 - 2021   PonyBox LLC Create Account Advertise Terms Privacy Contact Us
176 Members Online 270,230 Registered Members 2,853 News Articles 12,181,394 Unique News Article Views 292,242,513 Website Views