In 1758 the House of Braganza founded the Alter-Real stud at Ville do Portel (Portugal). They imported 300 Andalucian mares from Spain. The stud moved to Alter in 1766 where the breed improved and became well known for its fantastic ability at haute ecole. Many people consider the Alter-Real to be a strain of the Lusitano horse.
Alter-Real horses have a superb elevated action which is fantastic to watch!
The breed was popular in Lisbon but in 1821 was threatened when the stud was sacked by Napolean's army. They stole the best stock and later in 1834 when the king abdicated much of the land was confiscated and the stud closed.
Unfortunately, when attempts were made to revive the breed Arabian, English, German and Norman horses were used which led to a deterioration of the breed.
At the beginning of the 20th century Andalucian blood was again introduced with some stallions from Spain and the breed quality began to improve.
In 1932 the stud was taken over by the Ministry of Economy and the breed returned to its former glory.
Height: 15 hh - 15.2 hh
Colour: Bay, brown and occasionally chestnut or grey.
Conformation: Small, convex head with a short but well arched neck. The chest is deep and the quarters powerful. Legs are short, hocks strong.
Temperament: Highly strung.
Used for riding, especially haute ecole.
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