The most popular Polish horse breeds

Horses have been used by humans for centuries for various purposes. In the past they have been one of the most important means of transport and have helped man to grow his farm. Over time, horses also found their place in sport and recreation. So let’s find out what breeds of horses exist in Poland. What are the breeds of cold-blooded and hot-blooded horses?

The most popular Polish horse breeds

These are horse breeds coming from Poland. 5 breeds of horses historically created and bred in Poland. These horses can be found in many studs in our country. Horses differ in many features, including colour of coat.

Horse breeds in Poland: Wielkopolska horse

The horse of Wielkopolska belongs to the noble top-ranking horses and hot-blooded horses. All ointments are available. The origin of the Wielkopolska horse comes from the ennoblement of local horses with western horses in the lands of the Prussian partition. In the former breeding centers in Sieraków, Starogard or Gniezno you can see the beginnings of this breed of horses.

The Greater Poland horse has a noble head, long and properly set neck, long shoulder blades (characteristic for top horses) and clearly marked withers. Moreover, his rump is truncated, strong and muscular, and his limbs are long and dry. The horse from Wielkopolska is characterised by good jumping abilities and gait. The height at the withers of the Wielkopolska horse ranges from 165 cm upwards.

This breed of horses is the most numerous of the half-blooded horse breeds in Poland. The main horse breeding facilities of Wielkopolska are located in Książ, Gniezno, Starogard Gdański and Racot, among others.

Małopolska horse – Polish horse breeds

The Małopolska horse belongs to half-blooded Anglo-Arabian and Arabian horses. All ointments are present. The creation of this breed is connected with the participation of local peasant horses and Polish horses. Out of all breeds of hot-blooded horses in Poland, the Małopolska horse has the most strongly expressed features such as, among others, fertility, longevity, indolence or endurance at work.

In the 18th century the indigenous breed of horses was enriched by oriental horses (among others Turkish, Persian). In the following centuries, horses of other breeds imported to Poland also had their own horses in shaping the present-day Malopolska horses.

Małopolska’s horses belong to the top horses. They are elegant, durable and of medium size. They have a small head (similar to that of an Arabian horse), a long neck and a light neck. Małopolska horses are characterized by a slightly truncated and muscular rump, long and dry limbs and good hooves. The height at the withers varies between 158 cm and 165 cm.

Polish horse breeds: The Hucul horse, among others. Hucul Horse

The Hucul horse is a domestic horse. The most common ointments of this breed of horse are: bay, buzzard, crocodile and to a lesser extent bun and penalty. His ancestor was a tarpan – an extinct species of wild horse.

Until the end of the 19th century Hucul horses were bred mainly in the eastern part of the Carpathians. The Hucul belongs to the primitive breed of mountain horses. In the past it was used mainly as a draught horse. Nowadays they are used in mountain tourism, sledging, hippotherapy, recreation and during off-road rallies.

Hucul horses have an elongated head, short and strong neck and a lush mane. Short, strong and steep shoulder blades make this breed of horses perfect for sledging. Hucul’s limbs are short and strong and his back is strong. The height at the withers reaches 132-145 cm.

Typical breed characteristics of the Hucul horse are: a dark bridle going through the back and brindle legs.

Best known breed of horses: Polish Horse

The Polish horse belongs to the Polish breed of late maturing horses (pony type). This breed of horses is long lasting, resistant to difficult conditions and diseases. Polish horses have a buzzard’s coat, black dorsal stripes, limbb welts and sometimes shoulder welts. The abundant black mane of Polish ponies may contain few light hairs.

Polish ponies come from tarpans (eastern Poland, Lithuania, Prussia). In the 18th century they were caught in the area of the Bialowieza Forest and later distributed to peasants. During World War II the horses were robbed, only after the war did they start to rebuild this breed.

The Polish horse, due to its many advantages (e.g. fertility, perseverance, good gait) was used by people in agriculture, horticulture, transport, hippotherapy or recreation. Nowadays Polish horses serve people mainly in hippotherapy, recreation, as a genetic reserve or in care.

Horse breeds: Polish cold-blooded horse

The Polish cold-blooded horse belongs to small or medium types of rush horses. Among the Polish breeds of cold-blooded horses, the following stand out: Sokólskie horses (chestnut ointment, light mane and tail), Lidzbark Warmian horses (high body weight) and Łowicko-Sochaczewskie horses (chestnut ointment).

This breed of horses is genetically similar to the Ardennes horse. It owes its origin to small domestic work horses and imported cold-blooded horses from France or Belgium. In the past they were mainly used for work, nowadays it is being abandoned.

Polish cold-blooded horses differ from one type to another. Common features for all of them are a massive and muscular body, large head, strong and wide neck and widely spaced and muscled legs. Polish cold-blooded horses have a mild temperament and a desire to work. The height at the withers for stallions – 155-200 cm; for mares – 148-190 cm.