The Cleveland Bay is a well-muscled horse, with legs that are strong but short in relation to the body. The horses are always bay in colour, although a few light hairs in the mane and tail are characteristic of some breed lines. The breed is a rare breed, and both the United Kingdom-based Rare Breeds Survival Trust and the United States-based Livestock Conservancy consider the population to be at critical limits for extinction.
About Cleveland Bay in brief
The Cleveland Bay is a breed of horse that originated in England during the 17th century. It is a well-muscled horse, with legs that are strong but short in relation to the body. The horses are always bay in colour, although a few light hairs in the mane and tail are characteristic of some breed lines. The breed is a rare breed, and both the United Kingdom-based Rare Breeds Survival Trust and the United States-based Livestock Conservancy consider the population to be at critical limits for extinction. Despite serious declines in the population after the Second World War, the breed has experienced a resurgence in popularity since the 1970s. They are particularly popular for fox hunting and show jumping, both pure blooded and when crossed with Thoroughbreds. In the early 20th century, when a breed standard was issued by the British Cleveland Bay Society for use in judging shows, a section was added on the movement of the horses, describing the desired action, especially at the trot. It was included in part because military potential was still considered a key factor in evaluating harness breeds with large action. The combination of desired characteristics means that the breed is useful for breeding eventers and steeplechasers. The Cleveland Bay generally stands between 16 and 16. 2 hands, and is always bay. The legs are short in comparison to theBody, but strong and well- Muscled. The withers are well-Muscled, which often makes them less pronounced, the chest is broad and deep, the shoulders are muscular and sloping, and the croup slightly sloping.
The leg have little or no feather, as the breed was developed partially for working in the heavy clay soils of its native country, where heavy feather led to increased disease prevalence. The occasional red legs that appear in the breed are thought to come from chestnut Th thoroughbred stallions that were crossed into Cleveland Bay and Yorkshire Coach Horse bloodlines at some points in the history of both breeds. The breed has also been used to develop and improve several warmblood and draught horse breeds. To be eligible for registration, horses must have at least one grandparent registered with the main Cleveland Bay Horse Society stud book, although they are still referred to as Sporthian bloodorses. They must not be registered with any other registry, but must be eligible with the Cleveland Bay Part Bred Registry, but they are eligible with other registries as part breds for registration with the US and UK as well as other breed registries. They often have a large head, slightly convex profile, and a long, well- muscled neck. When the horses almost always had a countershaded dorsal stripe, but these disappeared with the outcrossings of the 18th century,. This preference for brighter shades of bay was originally stated in the official breed standard, although this stipulation has since been removed. They are hardy and long-lived horses, and docile in temperament.