Let us tell you the story of the Gypsies...
Anyone can google a Gypsy Cob or Gypsy Vanner (as they are sometimes called in America), and locate the story about the heritage and facts about the breed. Some websites will differ slightly but for the most part, everyone agrees that the Romany or Travelers were first to breed the horses that we adore and love today in North America. You may hear them being called a Cob or Gypsy Cob, Irish Cob, or even a Tinker Horse, or Gypsy Vanner. These all essentially mean the same thing, but at RLR we choose to call them Gypsy Cobs, which is what the Romany Travelers refer to them as.
The Gypsy Cob is a relatively new breed to the US and Canada and compared to other breeds there are still very few of them here. Let us tell you why….
The Gypsies were bred for many years in the U.K. by what is known as the Romani people or the Pavee which is another word for Irish Traveler. It is the only broken coloured horse breed in the British Isles, so how no-one noticed these horses before 1997 is astounding, but that is truly how long it took for them to be brought to North America.
The Feather (Hair)
Let’s talk about the feather (hair) on the Gypsy Cob and why it is important to mention.
All horses with feather evolved from a prehistoric easygoing, hairy-legged horse that lived in the forests of Europe called The Forest Horse.
Feather (hair) being a recessive gene is also called an additive or cumulative gene. To develop a horse breed with more feather than any other horse required that the Gypsies only use breeds with feather, all evolving from The Forest Horse. This is the key to our program. Feather holds a genetic key to the breed’s easygoing personality and demeanour that all lead back to the Forest Horse, who was a cold-blooded draft. All cold-blooded horses evolved from The Forest Horse.
In short, the more feather the more laid back and calmer the horse should be. This works perfectly for our program Healing with Horses.