Originating from the Clydesdale area (now called Lanarkshire) of Scotland these are a breed of draught horse. They are the most recognisable of the draught horses because they are used by the British Household Cavalry as drum horses but also because of the Budweiser Clydesdales we have all seen in the adverts!
In the middle of the 18th century Flemish stallions were imported to breed with native horses of the Clydesdale area of Scotland. The improvement in the progeny of these stallions encouraged more breeding of the same type. Almost all recorded Clydesdale horses today can be followed back to a mare owned by 'Lampits Farm'.
Originally used for hauling coal and other loads Clydesdales were also popular for farming. Numbers grew and the breed began to be exported around the world; Australia, America, Russia and Italy. In 1911 the number of stallions exported reached 1,617. In the First World War the Clydesdale was used by the army for pulling loads. Then, as farms became increasingly mechanised, the use of the horse dropped and numbers began to fall. In the 3 years from 1946 to 1949 the number of stallions licensed fell from 200 to 80.
In 1975 the Clydesdale horse was categorised 'vulnerable' by the Rare Breed Survival Trust. This means there are only 500 - 900 registered breeding mares. The breed briefly moved into the 'at risk' category (900 - 1500) but is now again classed as 'vulnerable'.
Height: 16 hh – 18 hh (taller than originally)
Colour: Usually Bay with lots of white markings. Black, Grey, Chestnut, Piebald, Skewbald and Roan are also seen.
Conformation: The head has a broad forehead and large nostrils, the ears are big and the eyes clear. The neck is long and arched and the withers high. Shoulders slope and they are strong and well muscled. The back too is strong and short and the quarters are powerful. Feet are open and round. Feathers on Clydesdales are silky.
Temperament: Can be energetic but kind.
Clydesdales are used for driving and logging. As I mentioned earlier they are also used as drum horses and by the Budweiser brewery for advertising purposes. Many people enjoying riding them and participate in dressage, cross country and show jumping.
Clydesdale Horse Society Website: http://www.clydesdalehorsesociety.com/
Did you see last week's video 'August vlog!' on my You Tube channel. Horse Life and Love
Please check it out and SUBSCRIBE.
You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram for updates on Chesney, Basil, Tommy and Daisy.
Until next time!