Breeding goal and conformation of the Friesian horse
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With their long, black hair, their proudly arched necks, their majestic appearance and their impressive and powerful movements, the Friesian horses are popular and famous, today. Not only because of their imposing appearance and their usually impeccable character, they are gladly used for movie productions, shows, carriage driving, riding or just as companion animals. The breed has a long tradition and an eventful past within which it was almost eradicated twice. These two very sharp population bottlenecks are a significant part of the genesis of the very narrow gene pool and the consequent high inbreeding in the Friesian horse, today. Nevertheless, the Friesian registry can today look back on more than one hundred years of pure breed Friesians without the introduction of any foreign blood. In the present paper, an overview will be given about the work of Friesian breeding organizations in Germany on the example of the ‘Friesenpferde Zuchtverband e.V.’. In addition, in the second part, the difficulties of the strictly closed Breeding Book will be demonstrated.