PASO FINO HORSES
The Paso Fino, the mount of the Spanish conquistadors, has proud
ties to a glorious past and closely connected with Puerto Rico. It
is the oldest true native breed of horse in the Western Hemisphere.
The Conquistadors and The Paso Finos
The Pure Puerto Rican Paso Fino (PPR), originated in Puerto Rico.
The history of the beautiful Paso Fino began with the exploration of
America by the Conquistadors. America had no horses, so these
Spanish explorers brought Andalusians, Spanish Barb and Spanish
Jennets (an extinct breed) over on their ships. These horses were
bred together, creating the foundation stock of the Paso Fino breed.
The offspring of these horses exhibited a very smooth gait as well
as a graceful carriage. Over the next 500 years, the breed was
refined to create a small to average sized horse with stamina, an
unusually smooth gait and a beautiful look.
The Paso Fino was developed in many areas of Latin America,
expecially in Puerto Rico, Today, a large population of these
refined mounts can be found outside of
Latin America. The Paso Fino was virtually unknown until after World
War II. American military personnel were stationed in Puerto Rico in
the mid-1940s, and were amazed when they saw the incredible Paso
Finos. They began importing them into the United States. By the
1960s, horses from Colombia were also being imported.
There was some controversy for awhile as to which country bred the
"true" Paso Fino. While it is true that there were some differences,
the horses were still remarkably similar. Horses from Puerto Rico
had a lighter frame and they were bred to execute an even footstep
with no sign of diagonal movement like the trot.
A mixture of three European breeds - the Andalu-sian, the Barb and
the now extinct gaited horse the Spanish Jennet - the descendants of
today's Paso Fino
were transported to the New WorId on the second voyage of
Over times these horses came to be known as Los Caballos de Paso
Fino, "the horse with the fine step." "The Paso Fino"
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