Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Peruvian Pasos, Exotic Horses

For as long as I can remember I have been a horse crazy girl. Neither of my parents were horse people so it was rather hard to convince them to buy me a horse, however I did manage to convince them to get me riding lessons. The riding lessons were your typical English riding lessons, done in groups on lesson horses.


One year the stable, which was in Edmonton, hosted a showcase of different horse breeds. One of the breeds that attended were Peruvian Pasos. While horses are not really “exotic pets” the Peruvian Paso certainly qualifies as an exotic type of horse.

The Peruvian Paso not only looks exotic but has two very unique gaits for which it was bred. These gaits are the Paso Llano and the Sobreando. Both are four beat lateral gaits, left hind, left front, right hind, right front. The Sobreando is slightly faster with a pause between the second and third step.

At the showcase of the breeds there were a few Peruvians, the one I remember best (this was almost 30 years ago) was a Palomino named Gato del Sol, cat of the sun. I remember him because I actually got to ride him. As part of the breed showcase people were allowed to ride some of the horses. I rode him (this being only for a few minutes) but wow I can honestly say he was smooth like silk. He also had a beautiful thick mane and tail; characteristics of the breed. They do not even cut a bridal path.

photo source - The gaits of the Peruvian Paso are natural and foals perform them from a young age, it almost looks like a trot here, but is not.

All in all these are very showy, beautiful, horses which, I think, qualifies them as exotic!

Peruvian Pasos are fairly rare, with less than 30,000 worldwide. Peruvian Paso horses originated in Peru but there are several breeders in the States and Canada (at least two breeders right here in Alberta). Some breeders have been criticized for trying to change the breed. Horses should stand between 14.1 and 15.2 hands but some people want to make them taller, others try to make them faster and have altered the gait too much in the opinion of other purist breeders. If you are looking for a Peruvian Paso try to familiarize yourself with the breed and only buy from a breeder who is sticking with correct breed standard.

To see more pictures and learn more about the Peruvian Paso, Read Here.

If you are a kid and want to try to convince your parents to buy you a horse (good luck) you can Read Here.


  1. Horse in the picture is so beautiful. I never have a touch with horse, never. Somehow, I do agree that they have such a good posture.

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  2. While there are benefits to having your mare bred, there are negatives as well, and one thing for certain is importance of general horse health. Most mares will not have any trouble having a successful gestation and delivery but sometimes problems arise. When thinking about breeding your mare, you need to make certain that you have the time for the hard work it requires and that you have special facilities, such as a separate area in order to wean the foal. Breeding purebreds can have a financial benefit where cross breeding doesn't offer much financially, although it has been known to produce nice foals. With stallions, you don't have to worry after the deed is done, but there are incidents that could happen during the breeding that could cause damage, such as the mare kicking.