National Day of the Horse 2020

Iceland Horse sharpening its teeth

Every year, December 13th is the National Day of the Horse.

Humans and horses have shared a strong relationship for many thousands of years. Therefore, as a result, horses have substantially contributed to the world both economically and culturally. 

Horses from Iceland

Humans began domesticating horses around 3000 BC in Kazakhstan and Russia. Once domesticated, they were introduced to the Near East around 2300 BC. Traditionally, horses have been used for farming, pulling wagons, chariots, carts, and riding since around 2000 BC. In addition, they have been used in war, hunting, transport, food, herding, agriculture, sport, and leisure. 

Therefore, in honour of National Horse Day, I would like to honour the fantastic Icelandic horse.

Given that I have met them in person ~ I believe they are the most beautiful horses.

Iceland Horse
horse facts

Icelandic horses are one of the oldest and purest breeds of horses globally. The Vikings imported Icelandic horses in the 9th century. Being a pure breed, they are free of disease. However, Icelandic law prevents the importation of horses. In addition, horses exported from Iceland can never return to Iceland. With up to five gaits (regular horses have three), Icelandic horses walk, trot, canter, tolt (a smooth four-beat lateral ambling gait), and fly pace.

These horses are stunning. They have long flowing manes, long tails, and 42 different colour variations. Due to the harsh Icelandic winters, a horse’s coat will thicken up during winter. They weigh around 350- 380 kg. Lifespan around 20-30 years.

Horses
Horses
National Day of the Horse Iceland Horse
National Day of the Horse Iceland Horse
Iceland Horse National Day of the Horse

The horse is famous for its friendly nature and big personality. It is unknown whether this is due to its genetics, the treatment or the fact that there are no predators; they do not kick or bite. They are easy to train and enjoy pleasing their owners. These horses have adapted to time, harsh weather, and rugged terrain. In addition, they are excellent swimmers.

The population of Icelandic horses is around 80,000. These horses are primarily used for tourism, such as horseriding.

Icelandic Horses Iceland National Day of the Horse
National Day of the Horse is to honour and remember horses worldwide.

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(c) Margaret Weiss 2020