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Clydesdale
Sisters View Star
Owned by: Sisters View Clydesdales
 
 
Clydesdale
Photo courtesy of Sisters View Clydesdales
 
 
Clydesdale

Average Height:
16.2 - 18.2 hands

Colors:
Bay, black, grey, roan, chestnut.

Conformation:
The Clydesdale is a powerful, heavy, and handsome horse. Males and females should both have these qualities, and they should also exhibit a free action that creates an impression of quality rather than bulk.

Clydesdales are judged heavily on the quality of their legs and feet. Members of the breed should have open, wide, and round feet and generous feathering on the legs, and their pasterns should be long and set at a 45 degree angle from the hoof head to the fetlock joint. The points of the hocks should be turned inwards and the shanks from the hock joint to fetlock joint must be straight.

The Clydesdale should have an open, broad forehead and a flat profile. The muzzle should be wide and the ears should be big. The neck should arch and the withers should be high. A short strong back is favored, and heavily muscled quarters complete the picture of a strong yet graceful animal.

Temperament:
Gentle, active, and responsive.

Members of this breed often excel in the following disciplines:

  • Driving
  • Farming / Logging
  • Pleasure / Show

Breed History:
The Clydesdale is native to the Lanarkshire district, or Clyde River Valley of Scotland, which was once known as "Clydesdale." The breed had its origins in the 18th century, when breeders began to cross local Lanarkshire horses with Flemish stallions in an effort to produce large working horses.

The first stallion to be used for this purpose was imported by the Duke of Hamilton VI, who granted use of the horse to his tenants. Soon afterwards, a Flemish stallion was purchased by John Paterson of Lochlyloch, who used it to further improve the local stock. A third stallion known as "Blaze" was notable for adding coaching qualities and style to the breed.

The matriarch of the Clydesdale breed was purchased in 1808 as a two year old, and the lineage of nearly every living Clydesdale can be traced back to her. Her most notable foal was "Thompson's Black Horse," or "Glancer," who had a strong body, short, thick lets, and the long feathers on his legs that the Clydesdale is famous for today.

By 1911, there were nearly 140,000 farm horses living in Scotland, most of which were Clydesdales. Clydesdales served in World War I and many were imported to Australia and New Zealand, South America, Russia, Italy, Austria, Canada and the United States.

The advent of the tractor finally brought a halt to the rapid growth in population of the Clydesdale breed. During the 1960s and early 1970s, breed numbers dwindled until the Clydesdale was categorized as "vulnerable" by the Rare Breed Survival Trust.

Today the Clydesdale is enjoying a recovery, as more and more breeders throughout the world are discovering the power and beauty of the breed. Though its numbers even in its native country are still low (approximately 700 registered brood mares and 100 registered stallions), the revival in horse-powered farming and logging is helping the breed gain popularity.

US Breed Association:
Clydesdale Breeders of the U.S.A.
17346 Kelley Rd
Pecatonica, IL   61063
(815) 247-8780
clydesusa.com
secretary@clydesusa.com

Native Country Breed Association:
The Clydesdale Horse Society
Kinclune
Kingoldrum
Kirriemuir
Angus,
DD8 5HX
United Kingdom
44 (0)1575 570 900
www.clydesdalehorsesociety.com
secretary@clydesdalehorsesociety.com

Other Breed Association:
Clydesdale Horse Association of Canada
Albert Hewson (Secretary)
6221 Con. 10, R.R.2
Thornton, Ontario  
L0L 2N0
Canada
(705) 458-9214
www.clrc.on.ca/clydesda.html
hewalclyde@sympatico.ca

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Flicka
Can a wild horse with a bad attitude and a not-quite-wild but pretty darn sullen teenage girl with a bad attitude be the best things that ever happened to each other? Though we guess the answer pretty early on in Flicka, it doesn't diminish the feel-good family film one bit. The film is a remake of the 1947 My Friend Flicka itself based on the bestselling (and still riveting) novel by Mary O'Hara, and starring a young Roddy McDowall as the aimless teen hero. This 2006 update changes the hero to a heroine, Katy (Alison Lohman), though the dynamic is similar, and in some ways makes the appeal of the film broader. After all, young girls love their horses, and Katy's moxie and determination, as she opens her heart to the wild filly, a touchingly and humanly conveyed. As Katy struggles with her relationship with her gruff dad (given an excellent performance by country star Tim McGraw), she finds she can gain confidence and be the person her father wants her to be--solely by being herself as she connects with Flicka the horse. The cinematography is stunning, and showcases a part of America that once was seen and celebrated often in films, and lately so rare as to be precious.


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