The Akhal-Teke doesn’t just hail from Turkmenistan, it’s also the country’s national emblem! Turkmenistan is a small country bordered by Afghanistan and Iran plus several other countries, and was a part of the Soviet Union until it’s collapse.
Photo ? Animal Photography, Sally Anne Thompson
Some say the Akhal-Teke is one of the oldest breeds of horses, possibly favored by the Mongols as early as the 13th Century. It has also been said that Alexander the Great’s horse was an Akhal-Teke. A possible key to the amazing longevity of the Akhal-Teke is the near flawless genetic makeup of the horse. Their superior DNA has helped the horse adapt to the harsh, cold and rocky terrain of Russia and other Central Asian countries, and has also made the Akhal-Teke a favorite for genetically engineering new breeds of horses for a variety of tasks. The Akhal-Teke also requires very little food and water compared to other horse breeds, which may explain why it was likely favored by nomadic tribes and armies throughout history.
The features of the Akhal-Teke include almond eyes as well as long ears and back. The torso is very sturdy and rugged which allow high performance on endurance applications. Typically an Akhal-Teke stands 14.3 – 16 hands high, according to the Akhal-Teke Association of America, and there are many colors allowed.
The following video offers more information and shows a variety of beautiful Akhal-Teke horses in action: