The Knabstrupper horse is an old and rare breed, originally developed in Denmark the horses come from the same original stock as the Spanish horses that gave rise to the Appaloosa. The Knabstrupper and the Appaloosa share the same unusual color patterns, they are the ‘spotted’ horses. The color variations range from the whole body spots of the classical Leopard pattern (sometimes called “Tiger’ pattern), in bay, black and chestnut to the blanket spotting and to varnish roan and snowflake patterns.
While their unusual color patterns make them eyecatching and different to look at, what makes the Knabstrupper really special is their superb temperaments and willing kind natures. Bred as working horse and selected as much for attitude and ability as beauty the Knabstrupper is a true family horse.
They are not particularly huge standing between 15 and 16 hands, with solid strong legs and well shaped feet, a neat head and an elegant long neck, short backed and strong the Knabstrupper is true warmblood horse. They are good movers but not extravagant, and are easy to ride. They jump well and are willing bold horses with good minds and a kind nature.
Since they are a rare breed there isn't that many of them anywhere! Most of them are in Denmark their original home and in Germany mostly north Germany.
Knabstruppers have mostly been bred by hobby breeders and small farmers, they are a very user friendly breed and delightful to handle and ride.
The foundation of the breed in Denmark was the Fredericksborg horse and the Danish Oldenborg. In fact the Danes consider a horse that is a cross between either a Frederickborg or a Danish Oldenborg and Knabstrupper to be a Knabstrupper, so similar in type are these hors
Currently the Danes and Germans produce two types of Knabstrupper horses.
The classic type: is a baroque horse, shown with a full mane. These horses are around 15-16 hh, solid, active, good moving and very friendly. They form the basis for the breed. They are the original type and make great family horses and are usually excellent all rounders.
We have imported 3 filles of this type, Payana, Linda and Sheela as well as a colt foal, Xafire, (see the picture to the left) who is a potential stallion, along with his older brother, Xavoy now a gelding, as an ambassador for the breed.,
The Sporthorse type: is a cross between the classic baroque type and a more conventional warmblood. These horses have more of the characteristics of the modern warmblood with the longer neck and legs and narrower head. They are produced to meet the demand for the athletic elegant showy dressage or show horse, but one that also has the spots! And the great temperament.
We have imported one gelding (Frej) who is a lovely sporthorse type with full chestnut leopard spots and one filly Peony, a snowcap filly, who shows the elegance of the Trakhner in her background.
The plan is that the combination of the elegance of the modern warmblood with the solid friendly temperament of the classic Knabstrupper will produce the nicest in riding horses along with loud color.
Photos courtesy of Knabstruppers for USA.
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