The Canadian horse is a warmblood horse and its country of origin is Canada. It is been developed in the late 17th century by the Louis XIV when he sent to Canada two stallions and 12 mares. Most of these horses were from royal studs and of Breton, Norman, Andalusian and Barb ancestry.
The Breton gave them great elasticity and the Breton their slightly oriental appearance. As the years passed by, beside the crosses between these bloodlines, even more, shipments arrived with more horses and so the number of their population increased and reached up to 13000 in 1763. These horses were used for hard farm work, driving on bad roads, carrying children to school and that`s how they developed the nicknames The Little Iron Horse and The Horse of Steel.
The influence of the other breeds made different lines and types of the Canadian horse. The first stud book was opened in 1886 and the Canadian Horse Breeders Association was established in 1895. Through history, although extinction threatened the Canadian horse for several times, they still survived and many stories confirm their courage, hardiness, endurance, and abilities. Today there are more than 6000 registered Canadian horses, with 450-500 new registrations per year.
Many horses were spread all over the East Coast and Upper Midwestern states. They were let by the owners to live in the harsh environment, allowing them to run free through the summer, fed sparse supplemental feed in winter and work hard all the time. The influence on and from other breeds is not known for certainty and is thought that the original Morgan horse had qualities and appearance of the Canadian horse.
It influenced the Morgan, American Saddlebred, Tennessee Walking, and Standardbred horse. The physical features of the Canadian horse are described as a horse with a short, well-structured head, wide forehead set on a strong and straight neck high and well-sloped shoulders short, straight back and long, broad body. The muzzle is narrow, eyes are large and expressive and it has delicate and active ears.
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