The Legendary Bulldogging Horse: Baby Doll

The Legendary Bulldogging Horse: Baby Doll

She may have been small, but Baby Doll Combs made a name for herself as a steer wrestling horse.

Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame bulldogging horse Baby Doll Combs (Credit: courtesy American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame)

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Headlines across the country billed her as the “Horse Famed for Tossing Cowboys Into Money,” and she was even the focus of two features in Life magazine. Baby Doll Combs was revered for her talent, success and athleticism, and it has even been said she knew the sport of bulldogging, or steer wrestling, better than some of the riders she carried. 

Here are eight facts about Baby Doll Combs you might not have known:

  1. Baby Doll Combs was foaled in 1947. Her sire was Oklahoma Star Jr, by foundation sire and American Quarter Horse Hall of Famer Oklahoma Star. Her dam was a Bert mare named Miss Boctick. 
  2. She weighed 1,030 pounds at 14.1 hands at maturity.
  3. She earned more than $400,000 from 1953 through 1960 for her riders.
  4. She debuted at the first National Finals Rodeo with seven of the 15 bulldoggers in attendance.
  5. She had one foal, Checotah Star, who also made a bulldogging horse when he matured.
  6. She died of colic in August 1960 after a bulldogging at a rodeo in Salina, Kansas. Her owner loaded her into his trailer and drove the 350 miles back to Checotah to give her a proper burial.
  7. She was featured in Life magazine. The November 7, 1960, issue ran photos of 11 bulldoggers at a graveside service for Baby Doll Combs. 
  8. Her legend lives on. Baby Doll Combs was honored in 1979 as one of the first horses inducted into the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Hall of Fame. In 2004, she was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame.