Andalusian horse

Andalusian horse

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Today's pride of the Spaniards - the Andalusian horse has a long and rich history. Horses in the Iberian Peninsula have existed since BC. They were very hardy and unpretentious, but small horses. The Romans, who conquered Iberia, brought the blood of the Central Asian horses to the local population. It is believed that the Andalusian horses also carry the blood of 2,000 Numidian mares who entered Iberia during the conquest campaigns of the Carthaginian general Hasdrubal. Later, during the Arab Caliphate, the formation of modern horse breeds was greatly influenced by the Barbary and Arabian horses. The influence of the Berber horses is especially noticeable in the relatives of the Andalusians - the Lusitanian horses.

And it seems that the breed was divided into two, focusing on the profile of each horse: with a more convex forehead, they went to the Portuguese. The Andalusians, on the other hand, have a more eastern profile.


Officially, the Andalusian horse breed was formed in the 15th century. Quite quickly, the Andalusians earned the glory of an excellent war horse on the battlefields. These horses were given to kings. Or captured in battles as a valuable trophy.

But such fame was promoted by her owliness, sensitivity to controls and a desire to cooperate with a person.

All these qualities were actually developed not on the battlefields, but ... while grazing bulls. And with further participation in the bullfight. The need to dodge the horns of a powerful, but owl animal was formed in the Andalusians of their present-day exterior and the ability to turn around “on one leg”.

Due to their valuable qualities, Andalusian horses participated in the formation of many later breeds. There is no horse breed on either continent that is not influenced by the Andalusians. Even the Quarter Horses, completely unlike the Iberian horses, inherited their "cow feeling" from the Andalusian horse.

Most likely, the "Bashkir Curly" came to the North American continent from the opposite side of Eurasia and are the offspring of the Trans-Baikal horse breed, among which curly individuals come across very often.

Of the European breeds, the Andalusians were "noted" in the Lippizians, on which the Vienna Spanish School performs today. They influenced the Kladrubsk harness breed. Perhaps the Andalusian blood runs in the Frisian horses.

Carthusian line

The history of the Andalusian horse has not always been cloudless. During protracted wars, the number of the breed declined. One such reduction occurred in the first third of the 18th century. It is believed that then the Carthusian monks preserved the tribal core of the breed, and the Andalusians of the Carthusian line are today considered the "purest" of the entire amount of the "Purebred Spanish breed". Breeders prefer to breed the "Carthusian" Andalusians, although the description of the Andalusian horse is no different from the description of the Carthusian horse. Photos and appearance "live" are also completely identical. Even with genetic research, they did not find any differences between the Andalusians and the Carthusians. But buyers pay much more for the horse's "Carthusian" pedigree.

No one, including the Spaniards themselves, can confidently say the Andalusian horse or the Carthusian horse is depicted in the photo. In theory, this should be exactly the Kartusian line.

Breed decline

Before the widespread use of handguns, the fighting qualities of the Andalusian horse could not be surpassed by any other breed. The ability to complex elements, sensitivity, agility and agility have saved the lives of the riders of these magnificent animals more than once. But with the advent of light weapons, in which it was possible to shoot in formation, the tactics of the cavalry changed. Even today, the Andalusian horse has too small a step and, as a result, a relatively low speed of movement. From the cavalry, they began to demand time to gallop to the ranks of the enemy, while he was reloading his guns.

And the Andalusian horse was driven out of the army by the faster Thoroughbred horse. Thoroughbred horsemen were no longer required to be able to climb a candle at full gallop or spin in a pirouette. The development of hippodromes also contributed to the extinction of the Andalusian breed.

Horse breeding in Spain was in decline until the middle of the 20th century, when interest in the old school of dressage with complex elements above the ground fueled the demand for the so-called baroque breeds, most of which are Iberian horses. It was then that the "division of inheritance" took place between Portugal and Spain.

As a result of the increased demand for Andalusian horses, their number began to grow rapidly and today there are already more than 185 thousand Andalusians in the world registered in the Studbook. In Spain, the PRE Association (Pura Raza Española) was created, which includes breeders not only of Andalusian horses, but also the owners of Alter Real, Lusitano, Reninsular, Zapatero. In addition to these breeds, in Spain there are also related to the Andalusian island Iberian breeds.


Andalusians are horses with a tightly knocked down, compact body. The head is of medium length with a straight or slightly convex profile. "Sheep" and "pike" profiles are defects of the breed and such an animal is rejected from breeding. The neck is of medium length, broad and powerful. A distinctive feature that the Andalusians have passed on to other breeds is the high, almost vertical neckline. Because of this exit, the withers merge with the upper line of the neck and seem to be absent.

The back and loin are short and wide. The croup is powerful, well rounded. Legs are thin, dry, without tendency to tendon injuries. Small joints are a disadvantage. There is no furrowing on the legs. The hooves are small and very strong. The mane and tail are the pride of the Andalusian horses and their owners. They are specially grown very long, since the cover hair of the Andalusian breed is lush and silky.

The average height of the "original" Andalusian stallions is 156 cm. Weight 512 kg. Andalusian mares have an average height of 154 cm and a weight of 412 kg. To advance into modern sports, in particular, dressage, the Andalusian horses were "raised" to 166 cm. The Spanish Association has set a minimum height restriction for stallions 152 cm, for mares 150 cm. But the last figures concern only registration in the Studbook. Such Andaluses do not go into breeding. For breeding use, the stallion must be at least 155 cm, the mare at least 153 cm.

"Features" of the Carthusians

There is an unconfirmed opinion that the Carthusian line has two features that can help distinguish the Carthusian from all other Andalusians: "warts" under the tail and "horns" on the skull. According to legend, this feature was passed on to the Kartusians by the ancestor of the Eslavo line.

"Warts" are most likely melanosarcomas to which many gray horses are predisposed.

"Horns" are found not only among the Carthusians, but also among breeds that have nothing to do with the Andalusians at all. This is a feature of the structure of the skull. Perhaps archaism, inherited by modern horses from their ancestor, who was not yet a horse at all.

So it is unlikely that these two signs can serve as a confirmation of the "purity" of the Kartusian.

Among the Andalusians, the gray color predominates, but any other monochromatic colors can be found.


For all the external fervor, Andalusians are animals that completely obey man. This is not surprising, given that the Spaniards harshly reject horses with a character that does not suit the owner.

The passion for riding stallions and the reluctance to kill make breeders to conduct a rigorous selection for goodwill. It is not only selection that fosters Andalusian obedience. The dressage of these horses is often carried out on a seretta - a hard hack with sharp spikes pointing inward. Russian buyers of gray Andalusians from Spain note that all horses have traces of serious damage on snoring. But such training firmly puts an axiom in the horse's head: "a man is always right." As you can see in the photo of this Andalusian horse, even a child is always right.


Today, the Andalusians are actively promoted into modern sports, but no less actively advertise traditional Spanish dressage.

The Andalusians are used for bullfighting.

And just for riding for fun.

A rather large number of Andalusian horses have already been brought to Russia. But in the Russian Federation, the Andalusians are mainly engaged in amateur "classical" dressage, which is not shown to anyone just in case.


Lyudmila Koretskaya, Moscow

Once upon a time, the first Andalusian horse, named Balear, was brought to Russia. The horse developed laminitis due to improper feeding. They treated him for a long time, and the horse endured the whole procedure. As far as I know, they cured him, but this horse could no longer work fully. But sometimes the horse rolled the children. It was possible for him.

Christina Lutova, Esparragosa de Lares

I live in Spain and see how many Andalusian horses are there. The Spaniards treat the Andalusians quite harshly, although they are proud of the breed. But breeders argue that only this treatment led to the emergence of the Andalusian breed, which became popular all over the world.


The Andalusian horse, given its complaisance, could be an ideal option for novice riders, but the hot temperament of these horses will surely scare a beginner. A beginner will not be able to guess that a horse dancing in place and snoring is actually listening to the rider sensitively.

Watch the video: Mystiques Padrino - Andalusian Stallion at Liberty (September 2022).

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