The Gypsy Horse, also known as a Gypsy Vanner or Gypsy Cob, originates from the UK and Ireland. They have the appearance of a small draft type, standing generally between 13 and 16 hands in height and characterized by a “sweet” head, well-muscled, powerful build, a well-rounded hip that is commonly referred to as a “Apple Butt”, abundant mane and tail and long hair/feather on the lower legs. They possess an incredibly gentle and willing temperament making them the ideal choice for many youth and amateur riders. Gypsy horses are commonly known for their eye catching black and white tobiano coloring but they also come in a variety of colors and patterns such as appaloosa, buckskin and blue roan. They are descended from a combination of Shires, Clydesdales, Friesians, Fell and Dales Ponies with their origins in the Romany gypsy community of the UK and Ireland. These horses were originally bred by the Romany people to pull their wagons or “caravans” known as Vardos. Today, the Gypsy Horse is excelling in nearly all riding disciplines as well as driving.
The beauty and grace of the Peruvian Horse is legendary and often look as if they are on parade. This horse is one of the world’s last remaining naturally gaited breeds, and is becoming a sensation among American horse enthusiasts. Although a newcomer to North America, the Peruvian had its origins over four centuries ago in South America, where the horses brought to Peru by the conquistadores and subsequent Spanish settlers were bred selectively to produce the genetic miracle which became the “National Horse of Peru.” The fusion of several Old World breeds provided the foundation for the Peruvian horse including the Spanish Jennet, African Barb, and Andalusian. Each breed contributing in their own way the energy, strength, stamina, conformation, proud carriage, beauty, smooth gait, and temperament that we see in the Peruvian Horse today. The gait of the Peruvian Horse is passed 100% to its offspring. No artificial devices or special training aids are necessary to enable the horse to perform its specialty – a natural four-beat footfall. Another trait that distinguishes the Peruvian horse is their “brio,” a quality of spirit that enables this tractable horse to perform with an arrogance and exuberance that can only be described as thrilling. “Brio” and stamina give the Peruvian its willingness and ability to perform tirelessly for many hours and many miles in the service of its rider. There is something for everyone in this smooth, elegant animal; riding comfort, strength and stamina for the avid trail rider; calm tractable disposition so important in the family mount; arrogant, flashy presence and action which set the exhibitor and parade rider apart from others.
The Friesian horse is very charismatic. Their gentle and willing nature provides a strong base for versatile training. The intelligence of the Friesian leads to a rewarding partnership between horse and owner. Uses of the Friesian horse are limitless-dressage, saddle seat, trail, and pleasure riding, jumping, pleasure driving, combined driving, and more! The handsome appearance and naturally animated motion provide a noble “presence” in any show ring, parade, trail, or just in your own paddock.
BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program
In 1971, the United States Congress recognized wild horses and burros as living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West, which continue to contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people.Wild horses or burros are free-roaming equines of the North American west that the BLM manages and protects to ensure they will live in perpetuity on the western public lands.
These horses and burros have been living in the west for hundreds of years and are most recently influenced by the settlement of the West. You will see hints of various breeds in the wild horses, but they are bred by Mother Nature to survive in a tough desert environment. Strong, intelligent, with good bone, and very hardy, wild horses can be trained to do anything their domestic cousins do. Wild burros are gentled and often trained for livestock guardians, riding, packing, and driving. These lovable animals make wonderful companions for horses.
The Andalusian, also known as the Pure Spanish Horse or PRE (Pura Raza Española), is a horse breed from the Iberian Peninsula, where its ancestors have lived for thousands of years. The Andalusian has been recognized as an individual breed since the 15th century, and its conformation has changed very little over the centuries. Throughout its history, it has been known for its prowess as a war horse, and was prized by the nobility. The breed was used as a tool of diplomacy by the Spanish government, and kings across Europe rode and owned Spanish horses. During the 19th century, warfare, disease and crossbreeding reduced herd numbers dramatically, and despite some recovery in the late 19th century, the trend continued into the early 20th century. Exports of Andalusians from Spain were restricted until the 1960s, but the breed has since spread throughout the world, despite their low population. In 2010, there were more than 185,000 registered Andalusians worldwide.
Strongly built, and compact yet elegant, Andalusians have long, thick manes and tails. Their most common coat color is gray, although they can be found in many other colors. They are known for their intelligence, sensitivity and docility.
The Arabian originated on the Arabian Peninsula. With a distinctive head shape and high tail carriage, the Arabian is one of the most easily recognizable horse breeds in the world. It is also one of the oldest breeds, with archaeological evidence of horses in the Middle East that resemble modern Arabians dating back 4,500 years. Throughout history, Arabian horses have spread around the world by both war and trade, used to improve other breeds by adding speed, refinement, endurance, and strong bone. Today, Arabian bloodlines are found in almost every modern breed of riding horse.
The Arabian developed in a desert climate and was prized by the nomadic Bedouin people, often being brought inside the family tent for shelter and protection from theft. Selective breeding for traits including an ability to form a cooperative relationship with humans created a horse breed that is good-natured, quick to learn, and willing to please. The Arabian also developed the high spirit and alertness needed in a horse used for raiding and war. This combination of willingness and sensitivity requires modern Arabian horse owners to handle their horses with competence and respect.
The Arabian is a versatile breed. Arabians dominate the discipline of endurance riding, and compete today in many other fields of equestrian activity. They are one of the top ten most popular horse breeds in the world. They are now found worldwide, including the United States and Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, continental Europe, South America (especially Brazil), and their land of origin, the Middle East.
The Morgan horse is one of the earliest horse breeds developed in the United States. Tracing back to the foundation sire Figure, later named Justin Morgan after his best-known owner, Morgans served many roles in 19th-century American history, being used as coach horses and for harness racing, as general riding animals, and as cavalry horses during the American Civil War on both sides of the conflict. Morgans have influenced other major American breeds, including the American Quarter Horse, Tennessee Walking Horse and the Standardbred. During the 19th and 20th centuries, they were exported to other countries, including England, where they influenced the breeding of the Hackney horse. In 1907, the US Department of Agriculture established the US Morgan Horse Farm in Middlebury, Vermont for the purpose of perpetuating and improving the Morgan breed; the farm was later transferred to the University of Vermont. The first breed registry was established in 1909, and since then many organizations in the US, Europe and Oceania have developed. There are estimated to be over 175,000 Morgan horses in existence worldwide as of 2005.
The Highland Pony is one of the two native breeds of the Scottish Highlands and Islands. As a result, it has over many centuries adapted to the variable and often severe climatic and environmental conditions of Scotland. This essential hardiness is combined with a kindly nature and even temperament.
In build and temperament the Highland makes the ideal family riding pony, for all ages, sizes, and weights. Properly broken and handled, they are excellent mounts for most Riding Club and Pony Club activities. Many are natural jumpers and in the show ring can increasingly hold their own in Side-Saddle, Mountain and Moorland, and Working Hunter Pony classes (up to Olympia and Malvern competition standard). As useful, safe hunters, and Long Distance ponies, they excel in rough steep country, where cleverness and steadiness are essential. Ever more popular with Riding Schools – some Riding Centres in France now use Highland ponies exclusively for tuition of both riding and driving.
The wide diversity of Highland Pony type makes the breed an excellent choice for any harness work, whether pleasure driving, wedding hire, or in Eventing (competition under FEI rules). The breed is renowned for its strength and resilience, and these qualities, along with its good temperament are vital to success in driving. Easy to match in height & colour, and easily broken to harness, Highland Ponies with their smart and striking appearance give pleasure where ever they go.
Pony trekking was founded on the broad backs of Highland Ponies. In 1952, to give summer work for deer ponies, Ewan Ormiston opened the first trekking centre at Newtonmore, Scotland. Since then, the activity has spread throughout Britain, taking the breed with it. Kind nature & quick learning ability make the ponies easily broken-in to the essential daily routine of a trekking centre.
The breed is a strong, well balanced, compact pony with all its features in proportion to its height. It is one of the largest of the British Native Breeds, and should show substance and strength – short cannon bones , well developed forearm and second thigh, deep chest, well sprung ribs, strong quarters, broad flat hocks and knees, and hard round feet.
Akhal-Teke horses are known for their smooth grace, athleticism, slim, cat-like build, and their gleaming metallic coats. This breed originated from the region now known as Turkmenistan, where they were the pride of the nomadic Turkic people. These desert tribesmen cultivated the Akhal-Teke’s speed, willingness, and endurance, as the Akhal-Teke was a true part of their culture. In the 1880’s the Russian army invaded Turkmanistan and many of these exotic horses were destroyed in order to cripple the strength of the tribal warriors. Fortunately, both Russian and Turkic horsemen did what they could to save the remaining horses. Some were taken to state farms in Russia and other Soviet territories, some escaped notice in remote areas, while still others were simply set free in the desert to survive as best as they could. From these remaining horses, the modern Akhal-Teke emerged. The achievements and athleticism of Akhal-Tekes in Russia and Europe caught the eye of Americans and the first Akhal-Teke’s were imported into America in 1979. While the Akhal-Teke is still on the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy’s threatened list, this horse is catching the attention of competitors across America. With a little over 600 purebred Akhal-Teke horses in America, many are being used as breeding stock. However, those horses that are being ridden competitively excel in their disciplines. The Akhal-Teke’s fast recovery rates, incredible stamina, smooth agility, and willing temperaments make them ideal mounts for endurance, eventing, jumping, and dressage. Akhal-Teke’s are currently being ridden for fox hunting, vaulting, and pleasure as well. Their diverse colors, metallic glow, and unique conformation make them stand out in any discipline. When speed and stamina are required, this desert breed has a natural advantage. They also thrive on variety and human contact, making them an excellent equine partner. To learn more about the Akhal-Teke breed, please visit http://www.akhal-teke.org .
The Fell pony is an ideal all-around family pony suitable for adults and children. They are used for riding, driving, and packing. Fells average in height around 13.1 hh. Not to exceed 14hh. They are black, grey, bay, and brown with thick bone structure and plenty of fine hair on the heels. The Fell pony shares its origins with the now-extinct Galloway pony which was also the root of the Dales pony. It is believed to have originated on the border between England and Scotland, quite probably pre-dating Romantimes. The Fell Pony Society makes no claims about any input from imported Roman war stallions being crossed with these ponies.
In the early stud books, 50% of ponies were brown in colour, though over the last few decades black has become predominant, followed by brown, bay and grey.
They are primarily a working breed of pony with activity, stamina, hardiness and intelligence that enables them to live and thrive in tough conditions out on the fells in the Lake District.
The mule is a hybrid cross between a male donkey (jack ) and a female horse (mare). Because the mule most often demonstrates the best traits from each parent, he possesses what we call hybrid vigor. The mule inherits his incredible strength, intelligence, patience, perseverance, endurance and surefootedness from the jack and his equine beauty, athletic ability and speed from the horse.