The horses from the Iceland Islands are strong and capable of the old horses’ gaits: tölt and soaring speed.
Profile: Icelandic horses
Height at the withers:
130 – 145 cm
up to 40 years
Colour of coat:
dappled in all color versions (except for leopard complex)
friendly, good-natured, confident, lively
sure-footed, energetic, graceful, flexible
Europe, North America
Show riding, leisure and trail riding, competitions, and working horses and packhorses are all options.
Facts about horses
Did you know that? Icelandic horses are among the oldest thoroughbred horses in the world. Importing horses is prohibited in Iceland in order to maintain pure breeding in the future: once a horse has left the island, it may not return.
Charming and powerful horses
Icelandic horses achieve a maximum height of 1.45 m, making them barely bigger than ponies. They are sometimes referred to as Icelandic ponies due to their diminutive stature. However, fans of the breed insist on calling these cute horses. After all, Icelandic horses, with their stocky and powerful frames and high endurance, are capable of astounding feats: They can readily carry a grown guy at a rapid speed without tiring. As a result, in their native Iceland, they have traditionally been utilized as mature riding horses or as working horses. Icelandic horses, on the other hand, are not just noted for their exceptional resilience; riders also admire their numerous colors. They might be black, brown, chestnut, speckled, or white. The color of various animals’ coats varies depending on the season. Icelandic horses have rich feathering and a robust, shaggy winter coat, allowing them to survive the severe Icelandic winters. By the way, the sturdy animals live for up to 40 years – real friends for life!
Icelandic horses may be utilized for a variety of reasons. Because of their highly modest and kind character, as well as their excellent endurance, they are ideal leisure and trekking horses. They are also utilized as sport and show horses because to their dependability, motivation, and intelligence. Their great variety of colours also makes these horses from the “island of fire and ice” so special. In addition, unlike other horse breeds, they can do extra gaits (tölt and flying speed), making them genuinely distinctive. Most other horses have lost these two gaits due to time and breeding, and they can now “just” walk, trot, and gallop. Icelandic horses are one of the most popular horse breeds in Germany, with around 65,000 of them residing there.
- Horse breeds
What kind of horse is an Icelandic horse?
The horses of Iceland are the original Viking horses and one of the purest horse breeds in the world. From the colonization, or over 1000 years ago, the breed has been isolated on the mountainous island in the North Atlantic, with no genetic input from other breeds.
How is an Icelandic horse different from a normal horse?
The Icelandic horse is the only breed that can execute all five gaits, whilst other breeds can only do three or four. This leads in a more pleasant ride for the rider, who sits comfortably in his saddle rather of leaping and jumping about in it. One of the many reasons we like the Icelandic horse is its smooth gait!
Are Icelandic horses draft horses?
Some Icelandics are bred as pack or draft horses, as opposed to riding or saddle horses, which have been developed to execute the gaits for which the Icelandic Horse is famed. In addition, herds were bred for their meat, in a land where it is impossible to keep cattle through the long, harsh winter.
What is the genetics of an Icelandic horse?
According to genetic study, the Icelandic horse is related to a DNA group known as cluster C-1. This category is made up of DNA sequences that originated between 1500 and 8000 years ago. The cluster is limited to central Europe, the British Isles, and Scandinavia.