The Padro Horse - A Brief History

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Generally believed to be a newer, fresher breed, Padro Horses actually have fairly obscure and mysterious origins. While active breeding and genetic trait sharing did not start earlier than the 1990s, it is believed that the horses that share the most unifying traits of Padros (although not yet named as a breed) are much older. Speckled horses like the Padro remained rare before active breeding started in the Caribbean though.

To pinpoint exact origins, we may have to track all the way back to the Noble Delisa breed, which bright and flamboyant colors may very well be the ancestral origins of the Padro Breed as we know it today. This would mean we can trace back the origins of the Padro horse to the World of Katuri, currently still inhabited by the Noble Delisa and Banagher Ponies.


Supposedly, Katuri was a world only inhabited by horses and smaller animals. When men invaded the lands, it is theorized that they took all the speckled Noble Delisa back home with them. After finding out that Noble Delisas are awfully hard to train, they released them to the wild and left them to fend for themselves. The Delisas mostly hid themselves expertly in forests and mountains and any sighting of the horses on earth are believed to be myths by some.


After many years in the wild the Delisas that were originally brought back from Katuri started to naturally evolve through heritance. The mysterious species became smaller than their ancestors and their coats became less vibrant and more resemblant of normal horse colors. Their speckling remained, however. The horses also became less temperamental and more peaceful, raising their offspring in large groups together and relying on the strongest and smartest of their group to lead them.


Emilio 'Padro' Ganchez, aka 'The Fatherly Type', discovered a secluded group of speckled Delisas in the far West of Cuba's mountains in the late 1960s. These horses had apparently never met any human beings before and against all expectations, they were unafraid when Ganchez approached the horses. Ganchez found their friendly and unconcerned nature admirable and after quite a few visits, he fell in love with the strange horse species. Ganchez began to live a secluded life in the Cuba mountains, carefully trying to breed the horses to make a smaller -Ganchez' Delisas are believed to have been 170-200 cm tall- and domesticated breed.

Breed Registry:

Emilio Ganchez was successful in spreading the breed all over Cuba in the 1980s but it wouldn't be until the Caribbean Festivals took note of these horses that the Padro Registry was created. Padro Horses were originally bred for carnival show purposes, in which their calm and willing character was very welcomed in the hectic parades. Their colorful speckling was perfect for the shows' themes and the horses are believed to have had quite a role in making the carnivals in the Caribbean popular again. The General Padro Association or GPAS is known to develop the breed further and has disclosed a lot of interesting genetics as time goes by.


Padros are spread all over the world at present day. Their calm and friendly nature has remained and these horses are perfect for inexperienced riders. They often share a very special bond with their owners, especially with children and can be used for a wide variety of disciplines, although they do best in halter shows and dressage, and aren't known to be stars in racing or jumping. Their conformation hasn't changed much from Ganchez' original horses. They have sturdy, long legs, well defined muscles and usually long necks and backs. Their height still has a huge range, from 145-195 cm.
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