The Karabakh horse is named after the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, it is a riding horse initially used for mountain steppe racing. The horses were originally developed in this region and they are noted for their easy temperaments surefootedness and fast heels. In 2004, a Karabakh horse named Kishmish bolted 1000 m in just 1 min nine seconds and covered 1600 m in 1 min 52 seconds.

The breed was liekly created by cross-breeding of Akhal-Teke, Persian, Kabardin, Turkoman Horse, and Arabian horse. there is evidence of input by the the Russian Don horse in the 19th century.currently they bred mainly in Azerbaijan but most of the horses found there have been crossed with Arabians and they are not pure Karabakh horses. They are an extremely rare breed with slightly less than 1000 individuals with the breed perhaps on the verge of extinction

Breed characteristics
Known to their their surefootedness and toughness are a small to medium-sized force standing 145-150 cm or 14 to 15 hands high.the heads of small and clean cut the straight profile and broad foreheads and flaring nostrils. They have a high set neck which is originally yet muscular and elegant.their bodies are compact and they have well developed and defined muscles usually the shoulder up right have a deep chest a sloping group and stand on long fine but amazingly sturdy legs.The horses are narrow due to their Akhal-Teke heritage.As well as being fast and agile, Karabakh horses are even tempered, calm, willing, and brave.

Their skin is very thin and is covered with soft gleaming hair. Most often that chestnut or bay with the characteristic golden tent. Grey individuals I also be seen. White markings are permitted

Breed history
The development of the Karabakhis closely linked to the Akhal-Teke of Turkmenistan and the Turkoman Horse bred in Iran. The it’s likely these horses are descended from the same strain and all played a role in the development of the Arabian. There are historical records detailing Arab invasions of Azerbaijan where the marauders took tens of thousands of horses with golden chestnut colouring after conquering this land.

The breed got its current shape and characteristics set during the 18th and 19th centuries during Karabakh khanate.Ibrahim-Khalil khan, Karabakh’s ruler from 1763 to 1806 the large forward of perhaps 4000 horses which were made up mostly of the Karabakh breed.from the 19th century onwards they became popular in Europe with large numbers reaching the UK. The breeding program in their native country has set back during the Russo Iranian waras during this time there was a lot of interbreeding of horses as well as deaths in the fighting however the breed through this time still managed to remain intact.

In the middle of the 19th century they were performing in parts of Europe in various showing exhibitions and performedat very high levels. The the Karabakh played a definin role in formation of the Russian Don horses. In 1836 Russian general Madatov’s heir sold all his horses, including 200 Karabakh mares, to a horse-breeder in Don. Karabakhs were used for improving Russian Dons’ characteristics up to the 20th century.

Early in the 20th century the Karabakhs sharply decreased in numbers once again,and once again the cause was civil unrest and war leading to the deaths of many horses and making breeding programs difficult to continue. The horse breeding enterprise established by Karabakh khans and developed by their heirs was destroyed in 1905. Regrettably, many pureblood Karabakhs mixed with other breeds and this resulted in loss of some characteristics most notably a decrease in their size. Then in 1949 the breed was revived in Agdam stud in Azerbaijan, which assembled most characteristic Karabakhs. In 1956 Karabakh stallion named Zaman, along with an Akhal-Teke Mele-Kush was presented by the Soviet government to the British Queen Elizabeth II.

Karabakh horse breed suffered another setback during Armenian-Azeri conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh. In days before the occupation of Agdam by the Armenian forces in 1993 most of the Karabakh horses were salvaged from the Agdam stud.

These horses are currently bred in winter pastures in lowland Karabakh plains between Barda and Agjabadi provinces.

There are know known specimens of this horse in Australia