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Finnhorse - Horse Breed & Info

Characteristics of the Finnhorse

Finnhorse Article and Photos Copyrighted - see credits below

The Finnhorse of Finland, sometimes called The Finnish Universal, might be called an all around horse since it is an all purpose breed which is divided into four separate sections in the stud book.; There is the draft type of Finnhorse, a small pony type, a riding type, and a trotter. The principle of pure breeding has been followed since 1907 when the stud book was founded, although the horse has been bred in Finland for at least 100 years.

Originally used locally as a light draft horse, the importance of the draft lessened in modern times, yet they are still used for work in timber country that mechanized vehicles are not suited to perform and they are also used lightly in agriculture.

Trotting is popular in Finland and the largest section of the stud book is for trotters. About forty percent or more of the trotters that start in races are Finnhorses. Speed, endurance , a well balanced trot, and eagerness for victory characterize the trotting Finnhorse. Riding horses of course are also in demand, in any country and the Finnhorse accepts this challenge too.

With the increasing popularity of riding sport there is a growing demand for good riding horses and the Finnhorse has had its best success in show jumping and dressage as well as eventing and long distance. The breed has its own special position in Finland as a sport horse and is the only native horse of Finland, a descendant of the northern the northern European domestic horse. As well as being bred in Finland they are also now being bred in Germany and Sweden. However their numbers are not large and a Finnish organization has been formed to protect and promote this national heritage horse.

Easy to handle, with a compliant nature, considerable speed, endurance, liveliness and longevity are typical characteristics of the Finnhorse. The breed is dry and strongly muscled, with hard legs and good hooves. The coloring is mainly chestnut, often with flaxen mane and tail, but bays, greys and more rarely browns or blacks are also seen.

Article © Photo © and courtesy of Jari Lehtikangas - Studio Trelin

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