The Norwegian Fjords are one of the world's oldest and purest breeds. It is believed that the original Fjords migrated to Norway and was domesticated over 4,000 years ago. Herds of wild Fjord horses existed in Norway after the last ice age. Archaeological excavations at Viking burial sites indicate that they has been selectively bred for at least 2,000 years.
gentle disposition of the Fjord is its most outstanding quality. They
are hardy, long lived, agile, sure-footed, and willing. They love
attention, are "people oriented", and are happiest when they are
working. They learn fast and have an amazing ability to retain what they
have learned even after long periods of inactivity. Their cool
temperament and graceful, balanced gaits both under saddle and in
harness, make them the ideal family horse. They are used as
schooling horses for the young and inexperienced, yet are large and
powerful enough for adults to ride and enjoy. Many special needs riders
have come to love their Norwegian Fjord horse that they ride weekly at
therapeutic riding centers across the country.
One of their unique characteristics is that approximately 90% of all Fjord Horses are brown dun in color. The other 10% are either red dun, gray, white or "uls" dun, or yellow dun.
The Fjord Horse retains the "wild" dun color of the original horse as well as the primitive markings which include zebra stripes on the legs and a dorsal stripe that runs from the forelock down the neck and back and into the tail. Dark stripes may also be seen over the withers. Red duns have reddish-brown stripes and body markings. Gray duns have black or very dark gray stripes and markings. The white or "uls" dun is a very light body color with black or gray stripe and markings. The yellow dun have a darker yellow stripe and markings, they may have a completely white forelock, mane and tail. The yellow dun is a very rare color in the breed.
Another unique characteristic of the Fjord Horse is the mane.
The center hair of the mane is dark (usually black) while the outer hair
is white. The mane is cut short so it will stand erect. It is trimmed
in a characteristic crescent shape to emphasize the graceful curve of
the neck The white outer hair is then trimmed slightly shorter than the
dark inner hair to display the dramatic dark stripe.
The head and neck should present an appearance of elegance without coarseness. The head is medium sized and well defined with a broad, flat forehead and a straight or slightly dished face. The eyes are large. Ears are small and alert. The neck of the Fjord is well muscled and crested. The body is short coupled with good depth, large heart girth, and well developed muscles. The legs are powerful, with substantial bone and excellent feet which are black in color. Fjords generally range in size from 13.2 to 14.2 Hands and weigh between 900 and 1200 pounds at maturity, with a few individuals ranging outside these measurements.
To read some of the Frequently Asked Question about Norwegian Fjord horses you can just click here.
Now, for a more personal description of the Fjords, read all about Our Fjord Story. It will give you the story of how we came to fall in love with these truly precious creatures!
Now for a little Norwegian humor ...
One winter morning Ole and Lena were listening to the radio over breakfast. They hear the announcer say, "We are going to have 8 to 10 inches of snow today. You must park your car on the even-numbered side of the street so the snow plows can get through.
Ole goes out and moves the car.
A week later while they are eating breakfast again, the radio announcer says, "We are expecting 10 to 12 inches of snow today. You must park your car on the odd-numbered side of the street, so the snow plows can get through."
Ole goes out and moves the car again.
The next week they are again having breakfast when the radio announcer says, "We are expecting 12 to 14 inches of snow today. You must park..." Then the power goes out. Ole is very upset and with a worried look on his face. "Lena, I don't know what to do. Which side of the street do I need to park on so the snow plows can get through?"
Lena says, "I don't know. Why don't we just leave it in the garage this time?"
Willows Edge Farm, LLC * Boise / Kuna, Idaho 83634