When AQHA was formed, the new Bulldog Type breed was tremendously successful.
As well loved and popular as the Bulldog Quarter Horse became in the 40’s and 50’s one would have to
ask why it became necessary to start another association solely to ensure his survival.

NFQHA looks at the TB in every horse regardless of how low its AQHA registration number, or what year it was registered or born. It is the NFQHA belief that the more TB blood a horse carries, the more TB traits it will exhibit and the more Quarter Horse attributes will be lost. In 1995 it was thought that a horse carrying 75% Quarter Horse blood (researching back to the parents of the first registered horse, or 11 generations), would meet the above criteria.

However, after the first National Show in 1996, and after reviewing pedigrees for over a year the qualifying criteria was raised to 80%. (as of January 1, 2018 it will be raised to 85%). This criteria has proven to be excellent, as demonstrated by the overall quality and consistency of National Foundation Quarter Horses.

Only NFQHA researches back 11 generations!



The first answer lies in the fact that AQHA never closed its’ stud book to Thoroughbreds, even though they had originally planned to do so – please read “The First 27,000”.

By 1995, when NFQHA was formed, True Bulldog Type horses were very rare. Many Quarter Horse owners had no idea how much TB was in their Quarter Horse, or that their Modern Quarter Horse bore very little resemblance to the original American Quarter Horse.  Not only did the Modern Quarter Horse look different, but much of the wonderful temperament had been lost with the addition of the hot TB blood, and navicular and other foot problems became more prevalent as the foot got smaller while the heavy muscling remained.

What A Line Up!
1951 in San Antonio
Left to right James Calhoun on Ceaser’s Pistol, Andy Hensely on Poco Bueno, Milt Bennett on Poco Tivio,

Phil Williams on Skeeter and Matlock Rose on Jessie James.

Copied from National Foundation Quarter Horse Journal  •February 2008  •  Page 21

In 1940 the American Quarter Horse Association was formed to preserve a ‘type’ of western horse commonly referred to as a “Steeldust” or “Bulldog”. 

These horses were rare and possessed certain characteristics that were unique enough to be a breed ‘type’ and to warrant the formation of a breed association to promote the ‘type’.

They were hardy, powerful, short horses with a great work ethic and the ability to perform many different duties. As wonderful as their athletic ability was – probably their most important attribute was the incredible legendary disposition that allowed them to be so versatile. This versatility made them invaluable to their owners who needed a ‘doing’ horse.

National Foundation Quarter Horse Association was formed in 1995 to recognize, validate and preserve the Bulldog Foundation Quarter Horse.  NFQHA has the only fully computerized research, and the highest standards and criteria for defining a Foundation Quarter Horse.