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A quality Andalusian horse has an overall quality of roundness, beginning with his sub-convex profile, arched neck and powerful haunches. Identify the winning qualities of this family of horse with information from an Andalusian breeder in this helpful video on horse breeds.
Hi my name is Carla Shown, and I am from Moonstruck Meadows in La Center, Washington. I am a small breeder of Andalusians. Today we are going to talk about the breed standards of the Andalusian, and how to evaluate a quality breeding animal. Today I am showing you a gelding by the name of Dosio who is a horse that is out of my breeding program. Dosio is six years old, he is bay in color, and he was a stallion until he was four years old. He is revised, and in the Spanish stud book, and registered with the IALHA. When you look at a Andalusian the first thing that you should be seeing is a overall balance. You should not see any lumps, bumps, prominent parts on the horse, which you will sometimes see in other breeds. You should be seeing a quality of roundness in the overall horse itself. Starting at the head the Andalusians typically have what they call a sub-convect profile or at the very least a straight profile so the front of their face should be straight or slightly rounded. And this is true in the Lusitano breed as well. They should have a triangular shape dye that is nicely set into their head, and everything should taper into a nice rounded muzzle, and they should have nice not huge ears, but nice sized ears. The neck should be long, and arched, and very high not very high set, but high set more so than a lot of other horses. Not only high set at the top of the withers, but high set here in the chest. They should have a nice broad chest, and very straight nice straight legs that are well under them. And in the mid-torso you should still see that roundness. You should see the neck blend into the withers, and blend into the back. Their withers typically are well placed into their back, and they don't have any trouble keeping a saddle on. Then you go into the hind quarters, and you have the same roundness of the horse. They have very powerful haunches, and they have a slightly different angle in their back legs from other breeds, because they are designed to be real powerful driving in the rear end. They also have a much lower set tail than any of the other breeds, and a lot of that has to do with how their rear ends are assembled. I will have to say that any horse, any good horse is going to be good regardless of the breed. I think that one of the best books that you can read about horse structure is Dr. Deb Bennett has a series that is absolutely wonderful, and it applies to all breeds. I think horses need to have straight legs, correct bone for their breed. And the Andalusian should have a much wider circumference in their bone. These horses also have very good feet. This horse has never been shod at six years of age, and he has wonderful feet. Typically they have a lot of hair, that is one of the traits of this breed. This guy isn't a real hairy sort, but most of the stallions and the mares of his age will have hair that is three, four feet long that people have to spend a lot of time keeping up. They should have silky smooth coats when they are shed out. They are typically very healthy horse. They don't have a lot of problems in that way, they don't have issues with OCD like some other breeds have, and we rarely see colic in these horses. I think it is mostly because the owners spend a lot of time with them, and so they don't typically lead real stressful lives. In addition to correct confirmation of a horse standing still it is really important that you pay attention to the horses movement. In the Andalusian breed historically these horses have a tendency to wing, which is a slight flipping out of the front feet. Not quite sure where that came from, but what is true is that more recently the breeders are breeding that out of these horses. So if you are specifically are looking for a dressage horse for instance make sure that you observe the horse coming and going, and see at all gaits if they are winging. These horses also some of them can have more reach one might have more reach than another. So when you evaluate a horse have your discipline in mind. What you want to do with that horse, and focus on certain things that are going to help you excel within that particular discipline. So that is what to look for in an Andalusian. And if you are interested in the very specifics of the Andalusian breed, and their traits the website for the Andalusian, which is andalusian.org, which is the registry for the horse has all the details of the different traits, and what you are looking for in the horse.
Specialty: Andalusian Breed