The United States is mainly responsible for the widespread interest in horses of the coat color known as Palomino, though horses of this color must have existed long before the United States began. The place of origin of the Palomino horse most likely will never be decisively determined. Myths and legends of various countries make the beginnings of this horse shrouded in mystery. The golden horse with ivory-colored mane and tail appears in primordial tapestries and paintings of Asia and Europe.
History of Palomino Horse
Though Palomino is not a breed, it is a color but it is recognized in the U.S. as a breed. These horses were introduced from Spain to the U.S. but it is believed that this horse breed existed in China. The coloring of this horse breed was famous in Spain and Queen Isabella encouraged the breeding of these horses. Palomino horses may have originated from Barb and Arab stock. Spanish settlers took Palomino horses to the U.S. Here some of the horses escaped and got mingled with the herds of Mustangs. Later these horses were used as saddle horses by the cowboys.
Physique of Palomino Horse
The physical attributes of the Palomino horse vary. The type preferred in America is that of a quality riding horse of an accepted American sort such as the Quarter Horse or Morgan. In Britain, Palomino is more sought after in form of children’s ponies of spirited appearance such as Arab-Welsh Mountain crossbreds.
Height of Palomino Horse
As already mentioned, Palomino is not a breed but a color, thus the height varies. It can occur over a whole range of sizes, from small ponies to heavy draught horses. The Association of Palomino Horse Breeders of America which is patiently trying to establish a breed; recognizes horses in the 14.2-15.3 hands high range, provided that they conform to a good saddle type.
Body Color of Palomino Horse
There is a gold or yellow coat on the body of the Palomino horses. There are no markings than white on the face or legs. It has a light cream or white mane and tail with not more than 15% dark or chestnut hair. The color of the body coat has different shades ranging from cream to dark gold. The Palomino horses also have dark skin and brown eyes and in some other cases have pinkish skin that darkens with age. These differences are the result of the effect on these horses by other unrelated genes. Some of the horses have little lighter brown or amber eyes. The summer coat of this horse is generally of a little darker shade than its winter coat.
Uses of Palomino Horse
The Palomino is an adaptable horse. These horses are well-liked not only for their beauty but for their resourcefulness, maneuverability, and stamina. They are to be found in pleasure riding, trail rides, shows, ranching, rodeos, parades, fiestas, racing, jumping, and all other equine activities.
Although Palomino horses have been carefully bred in the United States for more than 40 years; it is still not possible to breed them true to their color without any guarantee. For this reason, Palomino cannot yet be described as a breed. Persistent selective breeding is done by American aficionados. They are aiming for quality and nobility of carriage as well as for consistent coloring. This may well end in a new breed whose arresting appearance would ensure its demand on a worldwide scale.
See more: Nonius Horse