Dating back to at least the sixteenth century, these horses are found in the
mountainous regions of Northern Caucasus and like all mountain breeds are
extremely hardy. They were produced by crossing the native Mongolian stock
with Turkmene, Arab and Karrabahk blood. The first Kabardins were used for
riding in the mountains but many died during the Russian Revolution and so
the breed was re-established in the 1920s. After this time it became a much
stronger animal as several horse studs began to develop the breed, in
particular the Kabardin Balkan and the Karachaev-Chercass studs. Today the
principal studs are at Malokarachaev and Malkinare.
The Kabardin stands at about 15 to 15.2 h.h. and it is usually bay or black.
This handsome horse has an amenable character. The head is medium sized with
either a straight or Roman nose, the ears point inwards; the neck is strong
and fairly long and deep at the chest. The shoulders are sloping; the back
is short; the body is short and deep, particularly at the girth; the
hindquarters are well proportioned; the limbs are good and strong with hard
feet. It is a very sure-footed animal with a homing instinct making it ideal
for tackling the treacherous mountain tracks where it has evolved. It is
used for long distance trekking; it is a popular sports horse and is
sometimes used for racing.