The Fjord horse is a gentle, elegant, and is an extremely powerful horse! Native to Norway, this majestic beast is up there with some of the world’s greatest horses. Join us as we trot through the facts! Here are 25 facts about Fjord horses for you to neigh-over.
Fact 1: The Fjord horse is also known as a Norwegian Fjord Horse.
Fact 2: A Fjord horse can weigh between 400 to 500 kg. For comparison, a Draft horse (working horse) can weigh up to 910kg, but they’re generally smaller than this number.
Fact 3: The Fjord horse typically takes up residence in the mountainous areas in western Norway!
Fact 4: Fjord horses are used for riding mainly today. Because they have a good temperament they’re good animals to use in riding schools!
Fact 5: The Fjord horse has a bulky stature, and although it is small in size, it’s surprisingly strong and muscular and is very agile. The horse has been likened to a Draft horse. The Draft horse is the typical working horse, and I’m sure that we have all seen a picture of this horse ploughing a field.
Fact 6: Another use of Fjord horses is in the driving scene! Okay, so in this sense driving doesn’t mean ‘to get in a car and drive off’. This driving means that you hitch a cart to a horse and the horse pulls the cart. This is sometimes done for pleasure, but you also have horse driving races around the world!
Fact 7: A typical Fjord horse stands anywhere between 13.1 to 14.3 hands. For those of you who are not familiar with the ‘hands’ measurement, this is a measurement that is generally used for measuring how tall a horse is. Back in the day, before we had rulers and tape measures, people would rest their hand along a horse, from the floor to the horses’ shoulders, to see how tall the horse was. Today, we assume that a ‘hand’ is worth 4 inches.
Fact 8: The coat of a Fjord horse is incredibly thick. The main reason for this is so the horse can withstand the extreme temperatures in the mountainous ranges in Norway. However, having a thick coat also means that when it rains the coat is left soaking for ages. Pluses and negatives!
Fact 9: Like most horses, the Fjord horse breed will eat grass hay and alfalfa. They don’t mind an equal mix of both of these, but it is important that they have a balanced diet that doesn’t contain too many treats!
Fact 10: A typical characteristic of a Fjord horse is that it has a flat forehead, with a ‘dished’ shaped face. This type of head shape highlights their natural stocky build even more!
Fact 11: The Fjord horse breed is supposed to be related somewhere down the ancestry line to the Przewalski horse of Asia. You might know this horse as the Mongolian Wild horse, that was one extinct but has been reintroduced to the world over the years!
Fact 12: Most Fjord horses have not been exposed to crossbreeding. Crossbreeding is when you take to different breeds and breed them together. Not subjecting themselves to this means that a lot of Fjord horses today are pure breeds.
Fact 13: Fjord horses are called horses regardless of their height when they reach adulthood.
Fact 14: All Fjord bred horses are ‘dun’ in color. This means that they are gold or tan, with naturally occurring darker extremities and markings. For example, they’ll be tan in color but they’ll have dark hooves.
Fact 15: If a Fjord stallion has too much white on his body he will not be considered for breeding. Traditionally, too much white coloring on this breed of horse has not proven to be popular with people, so it has been classified as an undesirable quality.
Fact 16: The Fjord breed of horse tends to come in these ‘dun colors’:
- Red dun (this is the most common kind)
- Brown dun (almost golden)
- Grey (the shade varies from dark to light)
- White dun (more of a cream)
- Yellow (like a Red dun, but even paler)
Fact 17: The Fjord horse has a traditionally long mane, which is also very thick! But, to help the little horse out, the mane is cut and shaped so it doesn’t become unruly for the horse! You tend to see a Fjord who’s been to the hairdresser with a 2 to 4 inch mane.
Fact 18: There are an estimated 6,000 to 7,000 of these horses around today.
Fact 19: A male horse is known as a Stallion if he has not been castrated. If a male horse has been castrated, he is then called a ‘gelding’.
Fact 20: Researchers believe that Fjord horse breeding has been going on for thousands of years. In fact, they once found some remains of what they think were Fjord horses that were about 2,000 years old at a Viking burial ground.
Fact 21: Interestingly, another reason that the mane on a Fjord horse is kept to a short length is so that you can see the neck of the horse. Having a short mane makes the neckline and overall muscle of the horse stand out!
Fact 22: The breed of horse known as the Fjord horse is bred today in parts of Europe and America.
Fact 23: Fjord horses can live to be about 30 years of age. Which is similar in age to that of any other horse.
Fact 24: The coat of arms of Gloppen and Eid feature a Fjord horse.
Fact 25: ‘Mare’ is the name given to most horses that are over the age of 3. If a horse is under the age of 3 then they’re known as a ‘filly’.