Breed Standard

As with all breeds of horse, there are certain Friesian breed standards that are seen to be ideal and the goal to achieve when breeding a foal. When a Friesian is graded, the inspectors judge the exterior and movement of the horse against the KFPS breed standard, which ulitmately determines the score and quality of the horse. A brief overview of the Friesian breed standard is as follows;

  • Racial Type
    A jet-black colour, noble head with small attentive ears slightly inclining towards one another, a vertical swan neck, a luxurious long flowing mane and tail and a proud bearing.
  • Colour
    The colour of all hair is black. White markings are allowed on the face if they do not exceed 3.2 cm and are not located below the eye line. White markings elsewhere on the body of the horse are not allowed.
  • Hair
    The Friesian horse has an abundance of hair in the form of mane, tail, and feathers.
  • Head
    A small, expressive, noble head, in which the eyes are placed far apart. The nosal bone is preferably a bit dished. Large nostrils. The jaws are light and the lenght of the opening of the mouth long. The eyes are large and clear. The small, attentive ears point lightly towards each other.
  • Frame
    Harmoniously built and well proportioned. A strong back joining a croup of good length which should not slope too much. A sloping shoulder and good depth of girth with well sprung ribs. An ‘uphill’ built horse with an ideal height at the withers of 160 cm at 3 years old.
  • Legs and Feet
    Strong, clean, correct legs and feet with a well developed forearm.
  • Walk
    Straight, with sufficient length and power, elegant and smooth.
  • Trot
    Characterised by a high knee action with a powerful, long, balanced and supple action.

Click here to read the full, detailed Friesian breed standard on the KFPS website.