Altai horse was developed over a long period of time, and has been
significantly influenced by the harsh climate and the conditions
specific to the mountains in which they make their home. The Altai
is adapted to year-round pasture grazing, and the Altai crosses
with pure breeds have a good performance. They are larger, more
massive, and stronger than the Altai while retaining the sound health
and undemanding demeanor of the Altai. Programs are underway to
develop a new meat producing breed by crossing the Altai with the
Lithuanian, Russian, and Soviet Heavy Draught. These crossings were
made after the revolution as well as under the Soviet government.
Henceforth the crossbred horses were bred "in Purity".
breed was reared in the Altai mountains for many centuries and are
very well adapted to its harsh environment. Horses have always been
important to the tribesmen and nomads in the mountainous region,
requiring horses with a strong heart, lungs, muscles, and tendons
in addition to very hard, tough feet. A surefooted horse is imperative,
because they must often travel over steep mountain trails cut from
the rock and also cross fast-moving streams without slipping. The
Altai is a very hardy animal that is indispensable to the people
who depend on it.
Typically the Altai's head is average
in length, large and somewhat coarse, and the neck is fleshy while
the back is long and slightly dipped. Their croups are well-developed
and their legs are short and properly set. Occasionally defects
crop up, including sloping pasterns and bowed hocks. They can be
chestnut, black, bay, gray, and sometimes spotted.
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