Soviet Heavy-Draft Horse

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Soviet Heavy-Draft Horse


a breed of large heavy-draft horses developed in the USSR by grading up local draft horses and. improving them with Percherons, Suffolks, and Ardennes (improved with Brabants). The breed was confirmed in 1952. The horses are large and hardy and have a calm disposition. The predominant colors are chestnut and chestnut-roan; bay and bay-roan individuals are more rare. The average stallion is 161 cm high at the withers and has a diagonal body length of 169 cm, a chest circumference of 210.9 cm, and a cannon-bone circumference of 25 cm. Mares are somewhat smaller than stallions. Stallions weigh 770–790 kg, and mares 640–660 kg.

The breed is distinguished by great work capacity. In tests at the Tambov Racetrack in 1957 the stallion Fars hauled a load of 22,991 kg a distance of 35 m. In 1968 a record tractive force of 851 kg was achieved by the mare Zavod’ in tests at the Pskov Racetrack. The mares are high milk producers, yielding as much as 4,000 l of milk per lactation period. The horses are used as workhorses and in horse breeding to improve local breeds. Efforts are being made to breed the horses for meat and milk. The breed is distributed almost everywhere in the USSR, except in the mountain regions of Middle Asia and in those northern and northeastern regions of Asia having severe climates.


Konnozavodstvo i konnyi sport. Edited by lu. N. Barmintsev. Moscow, 1972.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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