Shire Horse Breed: A Workhorse well-liked by Royalty

Shire Horses are a heavy that is british breed capable of pulling immense amounts of weight. They have been used in England for over 300 years as workhorses, and their ancestors have been a favorite that is royal the sixteenth century.

The Shire Horse type is regal and versatile, and also this guide will coach you on all you need to find out about these steeds that are stunning

Shire Horse Characteristics

The Shire shares many characteristics with the Clydesdale breed, possessing a large and body that is muscled. This really is because of crossbreeding that is early the first Shire Horses and Clydesdales. The Shire’s head is long and its neck is moderately arched.

Shires have large eyes, deep shoulders, and a chest that is wide. Their straight back is quick plus the hindquarters are very long. A Shire Horse will not generally have feathering that is much its lower legs, though some can occasionally be seen.

Shire Horse Size

Shires are one of the horse breeds that are largest on earth. The Shire that is average stallion 17 hands tall and weighs 1,800-2,400 pounds. Geldings are generally hands that are 16-17 height, as well as the minimum requirement for mares is 16 fingers.

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A gelding typically weighs just like a stallion, and there’s no fat standard for mares.

Shire Horse Personality

Shire Horses are distinguished with regards to their size that is massive equestrians also love this breed for its calm personality. Easy-going and kind with people, the Shire takes training and instruction well.

A shire horse looks onwardA shire horse looks onward

This Breed’s nature that is gentle eagerness to please its owner have made the Shire an outstanding show horse in recent years.

Related: Suffolk Punch Horse: The Ultimate Draft Breed Guide

Shire History

The first Shire Horses didn’t appear until the century that is mid-seventeenth however their ancestors had been found in England ahead of when the period. The Shire is a descendant associated with English Great Horse, which carried knights that are armor-clad war. The Great Horse was even a favorite of King Henry VIII.

The Shire breed officially started in the century that is mid-eighteenth the Packington Blind Horse. In 1878, the English Cart Horse community changed and formed its name ten years later to the Shire Horse Society. They published the Shire that is first studbook 1878.

These hard-working horses astounded the planet making use of their capabilities that are pulling. Shires were brought from England to the United States in 1853, and the American Shire Horse Association was established in 1885. However, after World War II, the demand for draft breeds diminished.

The number of registered horses in the United States hit an low that is all-time the 1950s. The Shire continues to be considered a breed that is rare, but its struggle to survive in the 1950s resulted in the modern adaptation we see today. During that time, the Clydesdale helped breed the Shire it.

How as we now know to take care of a Shire Horse

Proper care is crucial for horses, if they work with the farm or provide pleasure trips. Top-quality hay, appropriate workout, and regular grooming are essential for horses, regardless of what they are doing. Your horse doesn’t need to be a global world champion to be treated like one!

Regularly search your Shire’s body for signs of infection or inflammation. Feel their joints for excessive heat, as this can indicate disease that is joint

Shire Horse Training

  • Longeing may be the training of walking your Shire around in circles while attached with a rope that is lengthy. It is an part that is integral of. Here’s getting your horse to longe:
  • First, fix a line that is longe of feet to the bottom ring of your horse’s halter.
  • Then, raise your hand that is right and kept in the line.
  • Once the horse begins going kept, offer the line some slack.

Try moving the horse appropriate while increasing your remaining hand, then repeat.

A shire horse pulls a carriage A shire horse pulls a carriage

Ideally, achieving this when on a daily basis and days that are several week will teach your equine to obey your commands without even needing to tug on the reins.

This breed has a history of hauling, and exercising that skill is an excellent way to train the horse and teach them obedience that is basic. To instruct your horse to haul, begin with longe workouts, walking your horse along a path that is fixed. Next, attach a harness and get them hauling! For horses that may get nervous during coaching, owners are using CBD horse pellets to help create a sense of calmness that is perfect for training!

Related: Scared Horse: A Simple Guide to Reduce Equine Fears & Phobias

Nutrition and Feeding for a Shire HorseJust like an athlete requires a large number of calories to replenish those that they’ve burned, heavy draft breeds need plenty of nutrition. Their bodies that are massive enough gas to work precisely. Feed your Shire 1.5 – 2 pounds of hay per 100 pounds of bodyweight


Your horse might also require a protein, supplement, and mineral pellet to make certain they get most of the nutrition that is proper. Grain supplements can also target a specific need that is nutritional of Shire. Numerous draft that is heavy cannot maintain their weight without grain. A veterinarian can help determine what type of grain your horse requires if they need any at all.

Coat Color And Grooming

The Shire Horse has fine, straight, silky hair. Their coat can be bay, brown, or black. The most color that is common a shiny, all-black coat.

While Today white markings were not favored on Shires in years past, the breed standard accepts them. However, excessive markings that are white maybe not desirable.

Routine grooming can be a bonding that is great for both you and your Shire. This breed does not have an abundance of hair to wash, so cleaning your horse won’t take time that is too much of one’s training routine. Should your Shire will not compete in programs, you need to just bathe them as required.

Clean your horse when it’s significantly dirty, but be cautious you don’t too bathe them often. This can dry out their skin’s natural oils, leading to dry and skin that is flaky. Show horses, having said that, should really be bathed prior to each occasion.

After Training or exercise, hose your horse off to reduce sweat, which can attract flies. You can wash a Shire’s feathers similarly to the real way one could clean unique locks. The hair and legs for 3-5 minutes.

Use a blow dryer to remove all moisture from the feathers, as any trapped water might cause skin irritation.

Shire after applying and rinsing shampoo and conditioner, massage Horse Health Problems

Shires are susceptible to chronic lymphedema that is progressive and all sorts of horses may suffer with an equine condition called colic.

Progressive Lymphedema( a buildup causes*)This condition of lymph fluid in the horse’s lower legs. Chronic lymphedema that is progressive cause swelling and hardening associated with epidermis.

The Most symptom that is notable of condition is the thickening of the skin surrounding the horse’s legs. This swelling shows itself as large, golf-ball sized growths that can inhibit the horse’s movement. Chronic progressive lymphedema can be prevented by proper maintenance of your Shire’s feathers.


Colic is another word for abdominal pain in horses, and it is usually indicative of an condition that is underlying. It may explain stomach that is mild or life-threatening gastrointestinal issues. Consultation with a veterinarian as early as possible is crucial.

Colic symptoms include pawing at the ground, frequent attempts to urinate, increased pulse, fever, and restlessness that is general. The horse might turn its body also to look at its abdomen, and this is known as “flank watching.” Colic is a condition that is wide-ranging so prevention involves healthier nourishment, constant usage of water, and frequent exercise.

Related: Appaloosa Horse Breed: the stunning, Intelligent & Lovable Equine

A beautiful shire horse in daylightA beautiful shire horse in daylight

How to have a Shire Horse

You can buy Shire horses from EquineNow and eHorses, two of the greatest resources for purchasing and horses that are selling. Their search filters allow you to find the equine that is perfect your life style. Shires typically cost around $6,000.

Register your horse with all the United states Shire Horse Association for breeding information and all sorts of the news that is latest on Shire events.

More About This Horse BreedThe massive yet calm Shire is a heavy draft horse with a long history and a work ethic that is strong. Their nature that is gentle and abilities lead them to be popular with those who nevertheless utilize workhorses, including the Amish. These horses are designed for virtually any task, therefore go get acquainted with the Shire Horse!

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