In 1723 King Friedrich Wilhelm I of Prussia established the Trakehnen stud in North-East Prussia. The stud used horses that had been used on farms for light work and by German knights as cavalry horses. Quality Arabians were imported from Poland and the careful breeding ensured that the stud became the breeding centre of Prussia. In 1786 the State took over the stud and began to focus on breeding cavalry horses.
At the beginning of the 19th century further Arabian and English Thoroughbred blood was introduced and by 1913 at least 80% of all mares had been sired by Thoroughbred stallions. However, also in 1913, politics intervened and limited the number of cavalry horses needed. As a result the breeding began to concentrate on horses for farm work and heavier stallions were used with this in mind!
Sadly, WWII took its toll on the breed. Then, as the stud evacuated during the winter of 1944 and attempted to make the journey west to safety they were bombed. Only, 100 of the evacuated horses survived and made it to safety. The stud no longer exists and in 1947 the East Prussian Studbook Society was dissolved. The Association of Breeders and Friends of the Warmblood Horse of Trakehner origin was established. This association is now called the Trakehner Verband.
The Trakehner stud book is closed. The last stallion born at Trakehnen stud was Keith, he was born in 1941 and survived until he was 34 years old!
Height: 15.2hh - 17hh
Colour: Any colour but usually black, bay, chestnut or grey.
Conformation: Large but refined head with and elegant neck and sloping shoulders. The body is strong and well rounded with powerful hindquarters. Legs are strong and feet are good.
Temperament: Generous, kind and docile.
Used as an all round riding horse. They are popular dressage horses but are also known to be good jumpers and are seen in both eventing and showjumping at top level.
Trakehners UK Website: http://www.trakehners.uk.com/index.html
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