The Norwegian Fjord is one of the world's oldest and purest horse breeds, first having been domesticated over 4,000 years ago. Herds of wild Fjord horses existed in Norway after the last ice age. Excavations at Viking burial sites indicate that the Fjord has been selectively bred for at least 2,000 years.
Fjords have been in North America since the late 1800s, with their numbers being greatly increased through importation during the 1950s and 60s. Today the Norwegian Fjord Horse Registry (NFHR) has over 6,000 horses registered throughout North America.
About 90% of all Fjords are brown dun in color; the rest being red, gray, white or yellow dun. The Fjord retains its original wild dun color, as well as zebra stripes on the legs and a dorsal stripe that runs from the forelock down the neck and back and into the tail.
Another unique characteristic of the Fjord is the mane. The center hair of the mane is dark (usually black) while the outer hair is white. The mane is cut short so it will stand erect. It is trimmed in a signature crescent shape to emphasize the graceful curve of the neck. The white outer hair is then trimmed slightly shorter than the dark inner hair to display the dramatic dark stripe.
Fjords generally range in size from 13.2 to 14.2 hands and weigh between 900 and 1200 pounds at maturity, with a few ranging outside these measurements.
The selective breeding of the Fjord has produced a horse with a willing nature that takes well to training. The versatility of the Fjord is proven by their success in everything from dressage to farm work. In the driving world, Fjords compete in pleasure shows and combined driving with great results. They are a wonderful recreational driving companion with their well-balanced, regular gaits and good forward movement.
The mission of the Norwegian Fjord Horse Registry is to register and preserve the genetic purity of the Norwegian Fjord Horse.. In addition to maintaining records of registration, the NFHR holds breed evaluations involving conformation evaluation and performance tests in English and Western Riding, Driving and Draft. The NFHR also supports regional clubs, maintains a rulebook for breed shows, and administers an awards program for its members.
For additional information contact:
Norwegian Fjord Horse Registry
1801 W. County Rd 4
Berthoud, CO 80513
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