Species group: Stock horses
A native horse of the American West, the Appaloosa is easily recognizable by the blanket of spots scattered like stars across the Appaloosa’s body. This flashy breed was the pride of Native American tribes in the pre-colonial Northwest, particularly by the exceptional horsemen of the Nez Perce. They bred for strength, speed, and endurance, as well as for the unique leopard spots that became the signature of the breed. Europeans settlers in the Palouse region called them “Palouse horses”, which became abbreviated to “Appalousey”, and finally “Appaloosa”.
The Appaloosa’s history has not been a kind one. During the Nez Perce War when the tribes were forced to flee their lands, the Appaloosas came with them. When the U.S. Army defeated the Nez Perce, more than 1,000 of the tribe’s horses were killed or taken and sold. When the Nez Perce were forced to settle on reservations, they were required to crossbreed any of their remaining horses to draft horses, to produce large breeds capable of heavy farm work. So it was that the breed the famous explorer Meriwether Lewis described as “lofty, elegantly [sic] formed, active and durable” could scarcely be found outside wild bands of roving horses. The Nez Perce would never renew their Appaloosa breeding program, but in the late 20th century, in an effort to resurrect the horsemanship traditions of their culture, the tribe began development of a new breed, the Nez Perce horse.
In 1938, the Appaloosa Horse Club was founded in an effort to preserve and improve this noble breed. Today, there are more than 630,000 Appaloosas registered with the club. Some have mistaken the Appaloosa for strictly a “color breed”, defined and identified solely by its unusual markings – however, the ApHC limits registration by both bloodline and physical characteristics. To be considered for registration, at least one parent must be a registered Appaloosa, though the second parent may be from a registered American Quarter Horse, Thoroughbred, or Arabian.
The Appaloosa is a versatile breed. They most traditionally are found Western riding disciplines, including cutting, reigning, roping, and barrel racing, or as working ranch horses. They’re also very successful in a variety of other equestrian activities, including show jumping, dressage, eventing, racing, endurance riding, trail riding, and of course, pleasure riding.
Appearance / health:
The Appaloosa stands between 14.2 and 15.2 hands high. The traditional build of the breed was tall and rangy, with a narrow body. The influx of Quarter Horse, Thoroughbred, and Arabian has changed the build of the modern Appaloosa, so that there is no definitive build. Apart from the distinctive spotting, there are 3 core features of the Appaloosa: striped hooves, a white sclera, and mottled skin, especially around the muzzle, eyes, genitals, and anus.
The coat of the Appaloosa can be described as a base coat color overlaid by spotted patterns. The base colors are bay, chestnut, black, palomino, gray, roan, dun, buckskin, cremello, perlino, and grulla. The patterning is more complex, and an Appaloosa may have a combination of more than one pattern. The patterns are:
Behavior / temperament:
The Appaloosa is an intelligent breed with a confident and courageous personality. Like many smart horses, the Appaloosa can seem quite stubborn in the hands of a novice rider, but becomes quite tractable and hard-working with someone they can’t take advantage of.
clever horse, distinctive color varieties, stamina, essential soundness, great family horses
Equine Chronic Uveitis, moodier temperament, stubborn streak, attitude problems
hackamore, Indian Shuffle gait, amazing cow sense, Western riding, lower level eventing, pleasure
Hardy, stubborn, and sweet
I have owned a Leopard Appaloosa named Dakota for almost 10 years. I got this horse when he was a bit older when his previous owner could no longer care for him. He has been very healthy overall and never had a lameness issues. The only health related thing is that he developed Cushing's disease in his twenties. He has a great temperament on the ground and is very personable. Under saddle he is a bit spooky and stubborn. When he is in consistent work he is usually well behaved and very trainable. He always did great at shows where I entered him in hunter under saddle and western pleasure classes. .
From Dominique M Dec 16 2018 10:45PM
Granulation tissue forms while a wound is healing, sometimes it gets out of control. If that is the case medication needs to be applied in order for the wound to heal properly. In practice we used a combination of SSD, asprin and steroids to help control the growth. Sometimes the granulation tissue needs to be cut back by the vet and then medication should be applied..
From EmLVT 411 days ago
Positive Reinforcement is the Best First Choice
Horses respond well to positive reinforcement. As herd animals, they prefer to get along with us over fighting us. Lead your horse every day, and stay relaxed. teach him that this is not stressful, and use your voice to let him know you are pleased. Stay relaxed and he will trust you and learn to lead quietly..
From Monnie Gilder 639 days ago