Arabian

Family: Equidae Arabian, Picture of an Arabian HorseEquus caballus
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Viewers might enjoy visiting the Arabian Horse Center - shown in the photo for this story, easily identified by the red tile roofs, the brown clay blocks, and the... (more)  Stephan Lauzier

   The Arabian, known for its incredible endurance, can maintain a run for over 100 miles!

The Arabian, one of the oldest breed of horse, and is also the purest breed of horse. They have existed for at least 4,500 years. The Arabian horse is known to have been in existence since the time of Muhammad. It is also believed to have been developed by the nomadic Bedouin's in the desert belt of Africa, extending from the Atlantic Ocean to the Arabian Desert, for 2,500 years prior to that. As Islamic influence spread so did the Arabian horse, to be bred all over the Middle East and North Africa. With the Moorish invasion of Spain in the 7th century it was introduced to Europe.

The Arabian horses have a beautiful and unique appearance. They are generally small in stature but readily recognized by their dished face and fine features. As they were bred in different parts of the world various breeds emerged including the Polish Arabian, the Shagya Arabian in Hungary, and the Egyptian Arabian. The Arabian blood contributed to the development of many other fine breeds as well, such as the Lipizzaner and the Thoroughbred, and it is still used to improve and refine other breeds.

In early times they were renowned for their incredible endurance and courage. Today Arabians are known for their "people-oriented" nature and loving disposition, which makes them great pleasure horses and pets. They are also known to be very intelligent. They are quick to learn and willing to please.


  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Mammalia
  • Order: Perissodactyla
  • Family: Equidae
  • Genus: Equus
  • Species: caballus
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Horse Breeds


The Andalusian or Spanish Horse is a light horse breed. The light horses are also referred to as a warmblood or 'hot-blooded' horse. Light horse breeds generally weigh under 1,500 pounds. They are typically used as riding horses for leisure and trail riding. Being agile and swift, many are also used on the racetrack, in the show ring, and for work on the ranch.
Light horses are grouped in a couple of different ways, one being the continent or country where they originated from. They are also grouped according to training, classified as either a stock type, hunter type, saddle type, or 'other'. A body type is generally attributed to each class, with the 'other' classification being a bit of an odd ball. It includes those that are color breeds or those that may fit a body type of one of the training classes, but not be used for that type of training. The 'other' types can also include those that may fit into more than one of the type groups.
The horse class the American Mustang fits into is the 'other' type class.

Horse Backgrounds


It is known that the Arabian has been in existence since the time of Muhammad. But it may have been bred by the Bedouin of Arabia for 2,500 years prior to that although there are no written records, making it one of the oldest breed of horse still being bred today. The historian El Kelbi wrote the first history and pedigree of the Arabian horse in 786 AD.
The spread of Islam contributed to the spread of the Arabian horse. As Islam spread to Turkey, Persia, Palestine, Syria, and North Africa, the Arabian horse began to be bred all over the Middle East and North Africa. It was introduced to Europe when the Moors invaded Spain in the 7th century, and became desired for its beauty, endurance, and courage. Emperor Napoleon rode a grey Arabian named Marengo into the battle of Waterloo.
As Arabians were bred in different parts of the world, subsequent breeds of Arabians have developed such as the Polish Arabian, the Shagya Arabian in Hungary, and the Egyptian Arabian. Arabian blood has contributed to many other breeds such as the Lipizzaner and the Thoroughbred, and because of its purity, continues to act as an "improver" to refine other breeds.

Description


The Arabian has a very unique appearance. It is generally small in stature with an average height of 57 inches or 14.3 hands. Although many fall within the height range of a pony, they are always considered horses.
The most distinctive features are the outline and the shape of the head. The unique outline is created by a skeletal formation that differs from other horses. The Arabian has 17 ribs, 5 lumbar bones, and 16 tail vertebrae where other breeds generally have 18 ribs, 6 lumbar bones, and 18 tail vertebrae. This difference accounts for the shape of the Arab's back and the high carriage of the tail.
Arabians are generally fine boned and have a small, refined head. The famous dished face is created by the indentation that begins below the eyes and down to the muzzle. They also tend to have an arch at the point where the head meets the neck, and the greater the arch, the greater the range of motion of the head. Arabians can be grey, chestnut, bay, and black (see color descriptions).
Arabian lines that were bred separately from the purebred Arabian have created distinctive breeds, namely the Polish Arabian, Egyptian Arabian, and Shagya Arabian. These breeds tend to be larger than the pure Arabian and have thicker bones.

Horse Care and Feeding


Arabians tend to do better if they are kept in larger paddocks and not confined to small stalls because their intelligence causes them to be easily bored. They may be more prone to developing nervous habits or "stable vices" when confined than other horses. Keeping them in a paddock with other horses is ideal. You can also try to keep them occupied with objects they can play with, such as horse balls and traffic cones.

Horse Training and Activities


Arabians mature more slowly than other horse breeds, and are not fully mature until five years of age. This means that owners of young Arabians must be extra careful not to strain their horse's legs, tendons, and joints before they have fully developed. Intense riding and jumping are definitely not a good idea until an Arabian is five years old.
Arabians are great pleasure horses as they are generally willing to please, but they can be very energetic and spirited as well, so they may not be the best horses for children and beginners. They do very well in the show ring in pleasure, dressage, and trail classes due to their gracefulness and agility. They are also great reining horses. They can be used for jumping although they are not top competitors.
The discipline they excel in is endurance riding because they have the energy and the willing personality to travel over great distances with a rider. Endurance rides can be single or multi-day events where horses race along a trail through all kinds of terrain for 30 to 100 miles a day!

Common Health Problems


Arabians are known for being a sound breed due to their strong legs and dense bones, and they tend to have a low occurrence of lameness problems.

Availability


Arabians are popular in many parts of the world and should be readily available throughout the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Like all horses, they range in price, but generally speaking they are not relatively expensive. Look in local ads or pick up regional horse magazines at your local tack and feed store to find horses for sale in your area. .

References


Maria Costantino, The Handbook of Horse Breeds, Barns and Noble, 2004
Byford, Sharon, The Arabian: A Guide For Owners, Alpine Publications: Loveland, Colorado, 1987 Author: Sandra Lloyd

Lastest Animal Stories on Arabian Horse


Stephan Lauzier - 2017-06-26
Viewers might enjoy visiting the Arabian Horse Center - shown in the photo for this story, easily identified by the red tile roofs, the brown clay blocks, and the the center court configuration of the stalls filled by prized arabians and their foals (typically 15-20 new foals are produced each year) at the California Polytechnic University at Pomona's W.K.Kellogg Arabian Horse Center where students from around the globe can study and appreciate the Arabian horse and attend the monthly horse shows put on by the students and faculty at Cal Poly Pomona.

  • Anonymous - 2017-07-19
    Thank you for the information. What beautiful horses.
Reply
Alix - 2016-05-30
I have a 10yo rigistered Pintabian gelding (99.21% Arabian) for sale. Stunningly beautiful black and white shiny coat with a few spots of grey and bay. Asking $3800 US dollars. He is trained and has been shown lightly in hunt seat. However he could go any direction. Serious inquires only please. Located in central Minnesota, USA.

  • Alexis Cosson - 2016-06-21
    Please let me know if your horse is still available? 803-847-6387 is my cell phone
  • Rose Combs - 2017-04-27
    Please send me photos, copies of Reg papers and copies of health records. How tall is he? Is he kept stalled or stall and pasture? Does he load easily? What do you feed him daily? How often is he ridden? Thank you.
Reply
jodie - 2011-04-17
We just got a 20 year old arabian and she looks horrible. She is very thin. She has patches of hair missing but I am not sure if my other horse is pulling it out. How can I put weight on her quickly and are there any problems with arabians that I should be looking for?

  • Charlie Roche - 2011-04-18
    Read the Arabian Horse Article attached as that might help. Don't worry about puting weight on "QUICKLY" Be concrned that she is getting a good diet and is able to eat freely as needed. She will achieve her normal weight. Did she have the patches of hair missing when you got her? If you feel the other horse might be pulling it out, can they be separated?
  • Anonymous - 2016-05-30
    Mix some mild horse shampoo with some veterinarian strength iodine ask the vet for strenth of iodine . Take a manure sample (fresh) to vet to save money many wormers are sold over the counter. Not all are found in the manure. Countsult with your vetrinarian.
Reply
kay yeager - 2015-12-03
I just lost my Arab two weeks ago. He was 27 1/2. My best friend for over 26 years. By far the smartest horse I have ever met. Rode him two weeks before I had to put him down due to colic. Miss him so much. At 59 I thought that I may not get another horse but have started looking for another Arabian. I have a 16.3 ottb but want another small go to guy like my old Traveller.

Reply
Alix - 2016-05-30
I have a 10yo rigistered Pintabian gelding (99.21% Arabian) for sale. Stunningly beautiful black and white shiny coat with a few spots of grey and bay. Asking $3800 US dollars. He is trained and has been shown lightly in hunt seat. However he could go any direction. Serious inquires only please. Located in central Minnesota, USA.

  • Alexis Cosson - 2016-06-21
    Please let me know if your horse is still available? 803-847-6387 is my cell phone
  • Rose Combs - 2017-04-27
    Please send me photos, copies of Reg papers and copies of health records. How tall is he? Is he kept stalled or stall and pasture? Does he load easily? What do you feed him daily? How often is he ridden? Thank you.
Reply
kay yeager - 2015-12-03
I just lost my Arab two weeks ago. He was 27 1/2. My best friend for over 26 years. By far the smartest horse I have ever met. Rode him two weeks before I had to put him down due to colic. Miss him so much. At 59 I thought that I may not get another horse but have started looking for another Arabian. I have a 16.3 ottb but want another small go to guy like my old Traveller.

Reply
Emily Eldridge - 2015-02-17
FOR SALE: 2yr old purebred arabian filly. Dark bay. Excellent mover with quality bloodlines. Happy to please temperament. Starting to be broken but very green. Kind nature. Mature approx. 15.2hh. Make excellent endurance horse. Not easily spooked. Enquires appreciated. Please email emilyeldridge500@gmail.com with queries or expressions of interest. Thanks!

Reply
shelby - 2010-11-12
Anybody arabian gelding in florida for 500$ he is bay and 15.1 and 7 years old.......? His name is budweiser but buddy for short budweiser is his trouble name..

call me 772-713-9825....or text

  • shelbee - 2010-12-21
    Yep I do my name is shelbee.
Reply