HORSES

horses
Experts predict that there are around 200 breeds of horses. These breeds are further categorized into types, sub-types, and species. Generally, we divide them into cold blooded and hot blooded horses.
Hot blooded horses are slimmer and lighter; they can weigh up to 600 kg. They have a thinner neck, longer legs, smaller and a straighter chest, while their legs are without protective fur. They reach sexual maturity at 3-4 years of age and are more lively.
Cold blooded horses are heavier, as they weigh 650 – 1350 kg. Their heads are heavier and bigger. They have a thicker neck, split spine, and strong muscles. Their hoofs are covered with protective fur. They reach sexual maturity after 2-3 years of age. They possess a phlegmatic temperament.

Horse, as we know them today, originate from wild horses which lived in the Eurasian steppes and forests. Their ancestors were probably similar to Tarpan. A species of wild horse that not long ago still lived in Southern Russia. Wild Tarpans were extinct in 1870, some survived in captivity.
Even The Mongolian wild horse, discovered in 1879 by Przelawski, played a key role in the domestication of horses. The Perzewalski´s horse has a reddish and brown fur but has a white snout. It´s mane and tail are black, the neck is covered with a thick and straight mane.
I the UK lives one type of primitive horses, Exmoor pony. Its history dates 6000 years into the past. This was one of the first domestic animals. First, it was domesticated by the people of Central Asia for pulling large tents and other heavy equipment. Only later was it used for riding.
There were no horses in the North America. In the 16 century, the Europeans brought them there.

The use of horses

For a long time, the horse had and in some areas it still has an important role in transportation – riding, pulling the carriage or post carriage, carts, trams and other vehicles. It is also used for ploughing. Horses were domesticated at around 2000 BC. Until the middle of the 20 century the horses were used in battles; armed forces still have horses. Today they are replaced with modern equipment. Horses are currently being used in sports and recreation. In Slovenia, harness racing is extremely popular. The best harness racer in Slovenia is definitely Jasin GL, who won some international accolades. Horses can also be used in medicine or. folk medicine – horse riding for therapeutical purposes.

Horse riding

Horses and ponies, which are used in riding schools, have to be adequate and safe to carry out the curriculum.

Age

Horses, younger than 4 years, can´t be used in riding schools. Some horses can be used for riding even when the are young. Some are never adequate for riding (even when they are older) due to their temperament.

Temperament

Kind temperament and affability are two important characteristics of a horse used in riding schools. Horses, with a kind temperament, are being used to train inexperienced and younger riders.


Dusan Kreslin
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