Firouz’s chance encounter with that dark bay stallion led to years of building
and cultivating herds to help perpetuate what became known as the Caspian
Horse. Starting in 1966, Firouz sent small numbers of horses to breeders in
America, England, Australia and New Zealand.
Around the same time, the Royal Horse Society of Iran took a renewed
interest in its native horse and worried about its exportation. For years, Firouz
struggled to keep the breed alive as she fought to prevent inbreeding (as a
result of a small gene pool), replace the horses that had eventually died of old
age, and find a resolution to the Iranian exportation ban.
It wasn’t until 1994, after the revolution in Iran, that Firouz was able to
acquire some Caspian Horses and begin exporting them to other countries
around the world. Today, the breed’s numbers hover around 1,000 animals. The
Caspian Horse is being watched by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy and the UK’s Rare Breeds Survival Trust.
Thanks to the efforts of Firouz and dedicated breeders around the world,
many equestrians enjoy the same Caspian qualities that Firouz first fell in love
with in 1965. The breed shines as a level-headed, agile jumper for youth and
petite adult riders. Friendly and intelligent, with personality to boot, the Caspian Horse is a hardy, easy keeper that also finds success as a driving horse.
KIM KLIMEK is a freelance writer based in Kentucky.
Research suggests that the Caspian’s
ancestors contributed to the devel-
opment of the larger desert horses of
HEIGHT: 11. 2 hands on average
BUILD: Although small, the Cas-
pian is considered a horse, not a pony,
and is refined and proportional in build.
COLORS: all except pinto.
Caspian Horse Society of the Americas
Caspian Horse Society (UK)
Caspian Registry Services
International Caspian Horse Society