Majestic Spanish Horses

Not just another horse, not just another stud...

In Spain it is said

That to ride a Spanish horse is the closest thing to Heaven on Earth

 

The Andalusian - Past to Present

The Pura Raza Espanola (Pure Spanish Horse), commonly known as the Andalusian is an instantly recognisable breed - often grey, although found in all colours except skewbald and piebald, with their high stepping gait, powerful presence and luxurious manes and tails.  I doubt there's anyone who doesn't know of the famous 'dancing white horses' of the Spanish Riding School in Vienna and if you look closely you'll see that many horses used today in 'the public eye' (for movies, photo shoots, in books and paintings, at parades, etc) are in fact Spanish Horses.

 

The Spanish Horse is an historical breed and it is claimed that its origins date back to as early as 5,000BC as evidenced in rock paintings found in southern Spain.  During the Roman Empire, from 200BC, these horses were considered superior to all others and they have remained highly sought after through the passage of time.

 

The Spanish Horse has been the chosen mount of many over time; by warriors for their fearless courage and stamina; by kings and noblemen for their great presence and nobility; by riding masters for their trainability; by bullfighters and vaqueros for their speed and bravery; by modern day dressage riders for their expressive movement; by eventers and show jumpers for their natural jumping ability and by the many pleasure riders who can testify to the all-round talent of the Andalusian.

 

However, the Spanish Horse as we know it today would not have been preserved if it had not been for the dedication of the Carthusian Monks who maintained a coveted selection of the best of the breed during the invasion of Napoleon in the early 1800's and in doing so ensured that outside influences and breeding trends weren't imposed on the purity of the breed.

 

The Purity of the breed has been further protected by the strict management of the Spanish Stud Book, now administered by ANCCE.  In 1962 the export of Spanish horses from Spain was allowed again after a 200 year ban and it is only since then that the Spanish Horse has gained further worldwide popularity.  It has also meant numbers of studbook horses have increased from 6000 in the early 1960's to over 115,000 in 2005.  Procedures ensure that horses adhere to the criteria of the breed type for inclusion into the studbook and to receive their 'apto' approval rating to breed, thus ensuring the breed qualities are retained from generation to generation.  

 

Here in Australia the first Purebred Spanish Horse, Bodeguero, great grandsire to our foundation stallion Blue Blood Acoso, arrived in Perth in the early 1970's, since then the Spanish horse population in Australia has grown steadily although there are still a relatively small number and not many come onto the market as once owned they are rarely parted with.

 

Crossbreeding with Andalusians has been in practice for many hundreds of years, in fact around 80% of modern breeds have evidence of Andalusian blood in them including Warmbloods, many European breeds (including the natives of Great Britain) and all American stock including Quarter Horses.  It is said that the Andalusian was bred into the Quarter Horse to give it good 'cow sense', 'courage' and 'agility' - a fact which has not been lost on the Mexicans as they have begun a breeding programme to cross the Quarter and Criollo horses back with the Andalusian to create the Azteca, their national breed - a fine, elegant competition and working horse.

 

Your purchase of a horse of Spanish origin will reward you with a horse that is intelligent, proud, noble, people friendly and loyal, highly trainable, quiet yet responsive,  versatile in any chosen sport and coupled with the looks and presence that demand attention.  

 

With Spanish horses in constant demand your purchase can also be viewed as a worthwhile investment.  Majestic Spanish Horses now offer you the opportunity to take your investment to the next level with the only cream dilute Pure Spanish Horses in Australasia available for purchase, sired by the exceptional & rare PICARO PM and RAYADILLO SG.

CREAM DILUTES IN SPANISH HORSES

There are numerous genes responsible for a multitude of colours and colour variations in horses.  Cream genes are responsible for lightening the coat colour with particular effect on the 'red/brown' element and little visible effect on the black coat colour.  Simply put a bay horse with the addition of a cream gene will become a buckskin, a chestnut horse will become a palomino and a black horse will become smoky black.  The addition of two cream genes will further lighten the coat colour, creating a perlino from a bay base and a cremello from a chestnut base.  As each horse is made up of genes sourced 50% from the sire and 50% from the dam resulting progeny colours vary from mating to mating depending on the individual genetics of the sire and dam and can also be influenced by other additional diluting genes e.g. pearl, champagne and silver.

Evidence of cream dilute genes in the Purebred Spanish Horse can be traced back over the centuries.  The word Palomino is in itself a word of Spanish origin. 

It is mentioned that  in the days of the Crusades Richard the Lionheart was presented with two magnificent war horses, one of whom was a Palomino.  During her reign in the Middle Ages Queen Ysabella de Bourbon of Spain kept 100 'pale palomino' Spanish horses as the chosen mount of Royalty and Nobility, even today these pale palomino and double dilute horses are called 'Isabella's' in Spain and Europe.  In 1519 Queen Isabella financed the exploratory trip to the 'New World', which is now Mexico.  So enchanted was she with the Golden Horses of Spain Queen Isabella sent a stallion and five mares on the expedition to breed and spread across new lands discovered by her financed expeditions.  These original Spanish horses bred and spread up into North America and have formed the basis of all native American stock.

Until the recent advent of DNA testing the cream gene has been excluded from the Spanish Stud Book, in the same way that black horses were excluded until the early 1800's and chestnut horses excluded until much more recently.  It has now been recognised that the existence of the cream diluting gene is a naturally occurring colour genetic in the Spanish Horse.

As a result of years of exclusion from the Stud Book many lines of cream genetics have been lost, however, a few bloodlines still remain and thanks to the efforts of a few select and dedicated breeders dilute colours in the Pure Spanish Horses are resurfacing again.

It is still considered a worldwide rarity to see double dilutes.  True perlinos are most common as they are the result of a cream gene acting over a more common bay horse.  Cremellos are most rare as there are still limited numbers of chestnuts in the Stud Book due to their years of exclusion.  Occasionally double dilutes can be found that carry the genetics suitable for producing both buckskin and palomino progeny. 

                                     The Andalusian

His stance is proud

His heart is pure

His loyalty unbound

And when he runs, his hoofbeat echo

Thunders noble sound

His swiftness challenges the wind

In untamed Majesty

His spirit ever riderless

His soul forever free...

 

Author unknown

 

                     

Members Area

Newest Members