The American Cream Draft
Known for its beautiful champagne or cream color and amber eyes, the American Cream Draft horse originated in the early 1900’s and is the only draft breed native to the U.S. still in existence. The breed began with a cream-colored draft mare called “Old Granny” who passed on the champagne gene to her offspring. American Cream Draft horse numbers began to decline after the mechanization of farming and today, there are fewer than 400 American Cream Draft horses registered.
Originally called the Chapman horse, the Cleveland Bay is the oldest horse breed in England, dating back to before written records began. Even-tempered, long-striding, and always bay in color, the church played a large role in this horse’s breeding, as pack horses were needed for trading goods between Abbeys and Monasteries. The breed would later became popular as carriage and driving horses, but today, there are fewer than 300 Cleveland Bay horses in the UK, and fewer than 900 purebred horses worldwide.
Considered one of the most beautiful horse breeds in the world due to its slender build and metallic-like sheen, the Akhal-Teke is the national breed of Turkmenistan and is believed to be one of the oldest surviving and purest horse breeds. Akhal-Teke horses have incredible stamina and were once used by nomadic tribes to travel long distances over the desert. This breed comes in a wide variety of colors, and many Akhal-Teke horses have blue eyes. Today, there are fewer than 7,000 Akhal-Teke horses, mostly found in Russia.
This pony breed originated in northern England where it was once used to carry ore from lead mines to ports at the North Sea. Known for their strength, hardiness, stamina, intelligence, and good disposition, the Dales Pony is commonly used for recreational riding. However, the breed nearly became extinct after being used by the British Army in both world wars, and today, there are fewer than 300 left in the UK and fewer than 5,000 left worldwide.
The Canadian Horse
Canada’s national horse originated over 350 years ago when King Louis XIV of France sent a shipload of horses to his subjects in New France. The horses were likely a mix of different breeds, but the descendants became known as today’s Canadian horse. This breed is strong and well-muscled, and usually black, bay, or brown in color. The Canadian Horse was nearly wiped out during the U.S. Civil War after they were used in combat, and today only about 6,000 Canadian Horses exist worldwide.
Casie Bazay is a freelance and young adult writer, as well as an owner/barefoot trimmer and certified equine acupressure practitioner. She hosts the blog, The Naturally Healthy Horse, where she regularly shares information on barefoot, equine nutrition, and holistic horse health. Once an avid barrel racer, Casie now enjoys just giving back to the horses who have given her so much. Follow Casie at www.casiebazay.com.