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The Five Best Breeds for Beginners


american quarter horse1. Quarter Horse
This breed is the most popular horse in the United States, no doubt in part thanks to its gentle and sweet nature. They are a calm, gentle and willing to work with you breed. This breed is commonly used for trail riding and often by mounted police in urban areas. It is exceedingly popular with a population of about three millio. They stand between 14 and 16 hands and range in color from black and brown to bay, chestnut, palomino, buckskin and grey. This breed was a favorite of settlers and cowboys as the West was settled.

2. Tennessee Walking Horse
Attractive, flashy and smooth, are hardly the descriptions of something that can also be called gentle, but the Tennessee walking horse is just that. They are sweet tempered, easy to train, average in size and yet full of action. This breed was originally meant to function as a utility horse, but is an excellent horse for people of all levels; especially beginners. Many of these horses are used in parades around the country and are considered to be excellent in everything they do. Actor William Shatner breeds Tennessee Walking Horses in Kentucky.

3. Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse
A new breed recommended for those with back problems as they have a beautifully smooth gait. They are excellent in disposition and highly recommended for first timers and those unsure around horses. They were originally bred by the mountain people of Kentucky for their farm life needs such as plowing and remained in obscurity until 1980. They stand no less than 11 hands and come in any color.

4. Shire Horses
Considered the most gentle horse while being the largest. This is an animal that is meant to be around all types and doing every sort of work. They have a history as a war horse in the Middle Ages and are well adapted to carrying very heavy loads such as men in full armor, as well as a full set of horse armor. They are patient and kind and live for approximately 30 years. They stand between 16 and 19 hands with a weight of about 1800 pounds. They went through a period of difficulty in their native homeland of England as they were replaced with machinery in the 1900's and never gained a strong foothold in North America. They are now well recovered and one of the best loved horses in the world.

5. Clydesdales
The Clydesdale, also known as the Gentle Giant, is well known for it's appearance in the Anheiser-Busch advertisements. They are a sweet horse, large and built for all kinds of work. They are quickly and easily recognized by the feathering around their lower legs, often a white that off-sets the bay color of the horse. They are most commonly seen in bay, black and brown with the occasional roan and chestnut. They stand between 16 and 18 hands and grow to be about 2000 pounds. This is a long-lived horse that will easily last into it's early twenties. Despite their status as one of the most loved horses in America, they went through a period of vulnerability but have grown from 80 horses in 1975 to more than 5000 in recent years.


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