The Benefits of Icelandics
True Icelandic horses are some of the purest breeds of horse in the world. Isolated from other nations, Icelandic horses were bred by Vikings, and used for transportation across the diverse terrain of the country. The horses are known for being intelligent, good tempered, versatile, and also beautiful. The fluffy coated horses typically are also natural jumpers, quick learners, and have great stamina. Because of their unique bone density, Icelandic horses are able to carry heavier weights such as larger adults. They also have an additional gait four-beat lateral ambling gait (or tölt) which makes for a very smooth and even ride. Icelandic horses also value human companionship and are affectionate. These abilities make them the perfect horses for therapeutic riding because they are able to service riders of all ages and abilities.
Milestones Invests in Icelandics
When Milestones was looking for some new horses, they decided to invest in Icelandic horses, and they chose to buy four horses from Iceland. However, the road to Kentucky was very difficult for the horses, and out of the four horses, only one survived. Making their way down through Canada, they returned to Milestones with a beautiful, chocolate-colored Icelandic, Dath (D-ahh-th).
Today Milestones has four Icelandic breed horses used for Therapeutic riding. The oldest, Dath, has been with Milestones since 1999, and she definitely exhibits all of the ideal qualities of an Icelandic. As a veteran, Dath is a dependable and gentle horse who helps many first-time and novice riders as they begin their lessons. Not only is she kind, and easy-going with the riders, but she is also instrumental in the process of teaching other horses how to behave during their lessons. Hard working, and calm, she’s known to be a sweetheart amongst the volunteers and riders.
But what makes Dath so special? She’s the only Icelandic horse at Milestones who is actually from Iceland. If you brush back her the fur close to her mane, you’ll see a white mark on her skin. This is actually a freeze mark, used to brand the horse. This is different from traditional branding which uses heat to create a mark. The freeze branding shows us that she is actually from Iceland.