Everything You Need to Know About the Clydesdale Horse

Everything You Need to Know About the Clydesdale Horse

The majestic Clydesdale horse has been a part of Scotland’s equine history for centuries. With their long shaggy manes, powerful legs, and calm demeanor, these impressive animals are beloved by horse lovers all over the world. Let’s take a look at what makes the Clydesdale horse so special.

History and Characteristics of the Clydesdale Horse

The Clydesdale horse is a draft breed—a type of horse developed for heavy work like pulling ploughs, carriages, and other farm equipment. It originated in Scotland in the 1800s from a combination of Flemish stallions and local Scottish breeds.

Clydesdales are usually bay or brown in color with white markings on their face and legs. They stand between 16 and 18 hands high (64-72 inches) and weigh between 1,500 to 2,000 pounds when fully grown. Their most recognizable feature is their long shaggy manes which can reach up to 12 inches long and the feathering around their fetlocks (ankles) which gives them a truly majestic appearance.  These sturdy horses have an even temperament; they are known for being reliable workers with an easygoing disposition.

Strathorn Jim the Clydesdale

Photo by Nadja Skoglund

Uses for Clydesdales Today

Today, many people use Clydesdales for show purposes or for light draft work such as pulling carriages or wagons in parades or competitions. They are also popular riding horses due to their gentle nature; they make excellent family horses that can be ridden by both adults and children alike. The breed is also used in therapeutic riding programs due to its calm temperament and large size which makes it easier for people with physical disabilities to mount them comfortably.

Girl hanging out with three clydesdale geldings at strathorn

Photo by Nadja Skoglund

Clydesdale Care

Clydesdales require special care due to their large size and strength. It’s important that they receive regular exercise, proper nutrition, hoof care, dental care, vaccinations and worming treatments in order to stay healthy and keep performing at their best. Additionally, they should have access to fresh water at all times as well as plenty of turnout space so that they can graze on grass hay when available. Finally, routine farrier visits should be scheduled every 6-8 weeks in order to keep your horse’s feet in tip-top shape all year round!

Click here If you would like to learn about The Origins of the Clydesdale Horse


The noble Clydesdale horse has been a part of Scotland’s equine history since the 19th century when it was first bred as a draft animal for heavy farm work like pulling ploughs and wagons. Today this beautiful breed is still widely admired all over the world for its strength, power, intelligence, good temperament, and magnificent appearance with its long shaggy mane, white markings on its face and legs, plus feathering around its fetlocks. Whether you’re looking for an elegant carriage puller or just want an easygoing riding companion that your whole family can enjoy together – look no further than the amazing Clydesdale horse!

Mack the Clydesdale at Strathorn Farm

Photo of Strathorn Clydesdale Mack by Katie Watt

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