Paso Fino's are a small breed of horse bred in Columbia, Peru and Puerto Rico. They have great stamina and are strong enough to carry a heavy man - making them popular on the ranches of South America. However, they are also elegant and graceful.
The breed has 3 particular gaits which have been improved through selective breeding. The Classic Fino gait is 4 time and is highly elevated and collected and covers little ground. The Paso Corto is also 4 time but is not collected, it is a very comfortable gait useful for long distances. The Paso Largo is again a 4 time gait but this is extended and very fast - sometimes reaching up to 16mph.
They have tremendous stamina, are sure footed and gentle.
During the 16th century Andalusian horses from Spain, Barb's from the Barbarry coast (now Morocco, Tunis and Algeria) and another breed known as Spanish Jennets (now extinct) were taken to South America. Paso Fino means 'fine step' and these horses were bred for their smooth gait and stamina.
After WWII the Paso Fino's began to be exported to the US and over the last 10 - 15 years have become popular in Europe.
Height: Not exceeding 15 hh.
Colour: Usually bay, brown or chestnut, however, they can be almost any colour.
Conformation: Small head with expressive eyes, set on a strong, thick but arched neck. The breed has muscular shoulders and a short back. The quarters are powerful and the legs strong and the tail set low.
Manes and tails are full.
Temperament: Intelligent, sensible and willing.
Used for general riding. Very comfortable for long distances so popular for trail riding and endurance. Also used for driving and in several western classes.
The Paso Fino Horse Association Website US: http://www.pfha.org/
In Europe: http://www.pfae.org/index.php/en/
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