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21 February 2019   
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 Breeds A-Z
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  Heavy Draught

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Although this animal is derived from an ancient breed of horse from northern Europe dating back to before the times of historical records, it is of recent origin, dating only from the 1920s. Renowned for its weight pulling ability it is a powerful harness horse of two distinct types; the heavier type was developed from local mares being crossed with Oldenburg, Norfolk Roadster and Anglo-Norman blood, whereas the lighter version is influenced more by Hanoverian blood. It became a recognised breed in1952 although there have been a few outcrosses to Oldenburg and Hanoverian since then on a limited scale.

The Latvian has good conformation and stands between 15.2 and 16.2 h.h. The head is handsome and workmanlike with intelligent eyes and alert ears; the neck is well proportioned; the back is short and strong; the body is deep; the hindquarters are rounded and powerful; the limbs are short and strong with good bone and a little feather. It is an active, powerful horse known for an exceptionally sensible, calm and willing temperament. The heavier types are predominantly black while the lighter types tend towards chestnut; other colours that occur are bay and brown. They are popular workhorses and although the heavier type is mainly an all purpose draught horse, the lighter type may be used as a harness or a saddle horse.

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