Quail Dobbs began his career in rodeo by riding bulls and bareback horses, and in 1962 began work as a barrelman. During his career he was named PRCA Clown of the Year twice in 1978 and 1988 and the Coors Man in the Can four times in 1985, 1986, 1990 and 1993. He is one of only three men to work as both a bullfighter and barrelman at the National Finals Rodeo, and has also worked seven times as a barrelman for the Wrangler Bullfight Tours Final. He has also worked 28 times at the Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming, the 1998 Frontier Days marking Dobbs' last appearance in professional rodeo. After his retirement, he became justice of the peace in Coahoma, Texas. He was inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame and the Texas Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame in 2002, the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Texas Rodeo Hall of Fame in 2004.