About the Breed

The Gelderland, also called the Gelderlander comes from a small province from the same name in Holland. A century ago the Gelderland breed was created by crossing their native mares with a wide range of sires: Andalusian, Arabians, Cleveland Bay, Neapolitan, Nonius, Norman, Norfolk Roadster, Orlov Trotters, Oldenburg and Holstein stallions. They wanted to produce a carriage horse with presence and good action which could be used for light agricultural work, and might also be used as a riding horse. In the 1900 More Oldenburg, and East Friesians were brought in and a Hackney was added to help cement the breed as a versatile carriage horse.

As times changed the Gelderland horse needed to adapt to a market as more competitive riding horses were sort. As such the Gelderland was crossed with many lighter stallions from Holstein, Hannover and France, leading to the creation of the Dutch warmblood.

Today the Gelderland is used as a carriage driving horse and as a show jumper. With a presence enhanced with a lofty, rhythmic action (the result of good shoulders) and a tail carried high on a much improved quarters. It is powerful, with short very strong limbs carrying no feather, but is still rather plain, with a sensible rather than elegant head and a straight or slightly convex profile. The Gelderland is chestnut, bay, black (or occasionally gray), often with white markings on the legs and face. It stands at about 16.2hh.

Gelderland are considered a rare breed with the breed registered in a separate studbook of the Royal Warmblood Horse Studbook of the Netherlands (KWPN). For a time the Gelderland registry was discontinued, and though it is back in the KWPN today, breed enthusiasts fear that the population is too small.

Quick Facts

Height: 15.2hh - 16.2 hands

Weight: 1000 - 1500 pounds

Coat Colors: Typically chestnut, can also be black, bay or grey and tobiano.

Markings: Common to have a large amount of white on legs and face.

Conformation: Lofty, rhythmic action (the result of good shoulders) and tail carried high on a much improved quarters. Powerful, with short, strong limbs carrying no feather. Sensible head and a straight or slightly convex profile.

Common Uses: Carriage driving, general riding, dressage, and show jumping

Temperament: Docile and eager to please

Place of Origin: Gelderland, Holland, Netherlands

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