Name of breed: Noriker or Norico-Pinzgauer
Country of origin: Austria
Breed origin: The Noriker is believed to be an Indigenous breed of cold-blooded horses from Austria’s central alpine region and they are thought to have originated around the highest mountain called the Grossglockner. They have been bred for over 2000 years but the early breeding of the Noriker was mixed with the baroque horses to create the heavy warhorses that were later taken on by the Romans as their trusty steeds.
Distinguishing features: Now this is what you call a heavy breed! They are known for their low centre of gravity as well as being sure-footed with great balance. The Noriker can be from 15.2 hands to a whopping 17 hands with a huge, strong neck with a classic draught horse head.
The colour variations that the Noriker comes in is what makes this breed so popular to so many different people. You have your usual stock standard solid colours but you can also spot a spotted leopard, blue roan and other roan colours as well as tobianos! The one colour that doesn’t come up is the grey!
Modern day Noriker: Because of its heavy stature, the Noriker is used for farm and carriage work as well as leisure riding.
Image credit: Pinterest and Maso Runch