Arabian Horse Conformation and our Breed Standard
The purebred Arabian horse is striking. An Arabian's most identifiable characteristics are its finely chiseled head, dished face, long arching neck and high tail carriage. Its entire appearance exudes energy, intelligence, courage and nobility. Every time an Arabian moves in its famous "floating trot," he announces to the world his proud, graceful nature.
In general, Arabians have a short, straight back (usually one less vertebra than is common with other breeds), perfect balance and symmetry, a deep chest, well-sprung ribs, strong legs of thick density and a more horizontal pelvic bone position.
Five key elements distinguish type (descriptions in italics are quoted
from AR102 Breed Standards found in the 2013 USEF Rule book):
Head - Comparatively small head, profile of head straight or preferably slightly concave below the eyes; small muzzle, large nostrils, extended when in action; large, round, expressive, dark eyes set well apart (glass eyes shall be penalized in Breeding classes); comparatively short distance between eye and muzzle; deep jowls, wide between the branches; small ears (smaller in stallions than mares), thin and well shaped, tips curved slightly inward;
Neck - long arched neck, set on high and running well back into moderately high withers;
Back - short back;
Croup - croup comparatively horizontal;
Tail - natural high tail carriage. Viewed from rear, tail should be carried straight.
The above qualities identify type in the purebred Arabian horse. If the horse has these qualities and correct conformation, we have our ideal standard.