Browse Online Catalog



   Barn Building

   Breeding & Pedigree

   Buying Horses

   Christmas Cards





   Editor's Choice

   English Riding

   Equine Behavior

   Equine Business

   Feeding & Care





   Pedigree Theory

   People, Places & Horses

   Standardbred Racing

   Thoroughbred Racing

   Training & Conditioning


   Veterinary Care

   Western Riding

   Autographed Books


Shipping Information

Out of Print Books

Horseman's FAQs

Free Items


About Horseinfo

Meet Other Customers

Contact Us


Frequently Asked Questions



Q3)  Is there an ideal conformation?

wholeh01.JPG (9476 bytes)

Click on the picture for a larger view.

The horse should show balance and symmetry.  It should be roughly as long as it is tall.  The height of the withers, the height at the hip and the length of the body should all be approximately the same.

While there are no absolutes, most breed registries will agree on the following conformational traits:

  • the neck should be long for grace and flexibility; long, sloping shoulders and high withers contribute to reach and length of stride; steep angles in the shoulder and pastern will increase concussion and unsoundness; too low of an angle will increase tendon and ligament strain;

  • the peak of the withers and the point of the croup should be the same or the withers should be at least higher than the croup;

  • the cannon bones should be short in relation to the forearm; short cannons increase length of stride; the forelegs, measured from elbow to fetlock should be about the same length as the depth of the body, measured from girth area to withers; the heart-girth area should be deep providing ample room for lungs and heart; the back should be short and the loin well-muscled;

  • the pastern and hoof wall should slope toward the ground at the same angle as the shoulder in order to absorb shock;

  • the hindquarters should be well-muscled and long; hips should be level when viewed from behind; the hocks should be clean and straight; the stifle, gaskin and thigh should be heavily muscled to provide the power for the stride;

  • the feet should be proportional to the horse's body size and round at the toes and broad at the heels with the coronet even all the way around; the hoof wall should slope at the same angle as the pastern.

There are many excellent resources available.  In addition to the list below, visit the Conformation area of the online catalog.

Back to Conformation Index    

Comments or suggestions? Send them to 


[ Home | Browse | Ordering & Shipping | Contact Us | Editor's Choice | Privacy ]

Copyright © 1999-2016  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 
No material may be reproduced or republished without written permission of The Russell Meerdink Co., Ltd.  
1555 S. Park Ave.  Neenah, WI  54956  920-725-0955     800-635-6499