Horse Breeds A to Z: The Alter Real

Lusitano_violino

The Alter Real’s history dates back to 1748 Portugal to the town of Alter, the horses namesake. The Alter Real was originally bred from?Andalusian Mares?that had been imported from Spain and Arabian horses.? The Alter Real is a large and intelligent horse it was used heavily throughout Portugal’s history. In the Peninsula war of 1804, the horses were used for battle and the breed was nearly destroyed. If it had not been for Ruy d’Andrade, a local horse expert, there surely would be no Alter Reals today. Ruy was able to spare a handful of Alter Reals, and single handedly save the breed.

According to Wikipedia, the Alter Real stands between 15.1 and 16.1 hands high and still maintains a very similar appearance to it’s ancestors from the 18th century. The most common colors are bay, brown, chestnut and gray.

The Alter Real can still be found being bred in Portugal today.

Below is a short video from the Lusitano Festival 2007 showing an Alter Real in action.

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