Thoroughbred animals2018-05-29T08:30:14+00:00

Thoroughbred animals: the carthusian horse

Bearing the name Carthusian horse, are those horse which have their ancestral line going back to those animals proceeding from the stud which defined this breed, which is to say, the breed constituted by the Carthusian monks at the end of the XV century.

The Yeguada de la Cartuja – Hierro del Bocado Stud, represents the most important nucleus of horses of the Carthusian breed in the world. The Carthusian horses of the present day are branded with the Hierro del Bocado brand, which is an emblematic symbol of these marvellous equine specimens. The Cartuja – Hierro del Bocado Stud is, at the present time, the main livestock stockbreeder in the world which is specialised in Carthusian horses. The fundamental objective of this Stud consists of preserving the genetic pool which is present in the stock and to contribute towards the improvement of the Spanish thoroughbred horse in general, and of the Carthusian in particular.

Morphological characteristics of the thoroughbred carthusian horse

Eumetrics: this is a term used to define within the different species an average volume, result of the optimum combination of the surface and the body mass, and which in the present day Carthusian Horse is between 450 – 500 Kg.

Mesomorphic: of average proportions, where some parameters of length and width appear relatively similar, and in which the height corresponds almost always to the body length.

Type of orthostenic constitution or balance: perfect nervous and hormonal balance: clearly marked proportional and differential sexual forms.


1. Head.

1. Head

Average length, not short. Fine. Lean. Sub – convex profile.
Ears: Fine and supple base and auricular cavity. Well located. Average size.
Eyes: Large, slightly displaced towards the frontal line, obliquely inclined.
Face: (nasal region) more or less straight.
Muzzle: Average size. Seemingly of little volume. Nostrils. Of good size. Folded. Not open nor round. The curvature of the edge of the open jaw, not closed, giving the head the shape of a bobbin.


Slightly arched. Average length. Well placed on the torso.
Neck – facial transition: Fine and elegant.
Mane: Abundant and fine hair.


This is the extremity of the torso, with the coxal vertebrae forming its anatomical base. In the straight profile and the horizontal rump category equine specimens, the tail is projected tall and trunk – like. In the convex and sub – convex profiles, coinciding with oblique rumps, the tail is low and situated between the ischium.


Vertebral region: where the “cross” appears, continued by the dorsal or dorsal – lumbar region.
The “cross” is located immediately behind the upper edge of the neck, facing the back and between both shoulders, with its base on the 2nd to the 8th dorsal vertebrae, the suitable part of the cervical ligament (occipital – raquidian ligament) and the cartilage of the prolongation of the corresponding shoulder blades and muscles. Its conformation is very important when we have to define an aptitude and differentiate the riding horses from the carriage horses.
Dorsal – lumbar region: this is the space comprised between the “cross” and the hindquarters of the horse, which has as its anatomical base the ten last dorsal vertebrae, the upper extreme of the ribs and the lumbar vertebrae and muscle plains.
Side region: Cthis area comprises the largest part of the lateral wall of the thorax, whose demarcation would be the oblique line traced from the dorsal third of the last rib, to the lateral edge of the xifoid apophysis of the sternum. This does not affect the extreme distals and the cartilage of the 7 – 8 last ribs, which are projected over the abdominal territory.
Sternum region: this has as its anatomical base the sternum bone.
Pre – sternum region: or the “chest” of the horse, housed between the articulations of the shoulders, displays for us, in the medioventral area, the handle of the sternum, a palpable structure, which sometimes appears to be shaped as a “keel – shaped sternum” and which along with the adjacent pectoral muscles, represent the anatomical base of this region. An average pectoral groove divides the pair of relieves which are determined by these muscles. This region should be proportional to the conformation of the individual, more or less ample, broad, deep and muscular.


Cranial portion: although this appears to belong to the thorax, given that it touches an important part of the lateral territory, in actual fact it belongs to the intrathoracic portion, which includes retrodiaphragmatic organs (liver, spleen, stomach).
Mid portion: in which the flank or side is important, the lateral fold or knee fold or “stifle” and the umbilical region, should be short, narrow and well formed.
Caudal portion: this is made up of the body parts situated between both lateral folds, which is to say, the pre-pubic area, whose fold continues with the prepuce area in the male; the groin area which is made up of the mammary glands and the scrotal area, groin canal, spermatic cord, etc. This area should have a fine skin covering with the foreskin and scrotum well located and well formed.


Straight and well formed. Bone mass in harmony with the animal.
Ungular region or “hoof”: well developed. angle of the “toes of the horseshoe”, between 45 – 50º (the same normal inclination as the “pastern”). the “horny cover of the hoof” or the “wall”: black, smooth, compact and free from deformations.
Heels: moderately high and separated.
Cuneiform cornea (“soft part of the foot”): elongated on its vertex up to the centre of the palm, well developed and extraordinarily flexible.
Pastern (1st phalanx): this should be well formed, inclination and direction; of a moderate length and exempt of anomalies or lesions.
Metacarpus: “long bone”, this has as its anatomical base the 1st, 2nd and 3rd metacarpal, as well as the flexor tendons and interosseous tendon (upper ligament of the fetlock joint). Its beauty lies in the verticality of its direction, in the appropriate constitution and exempt of exostosis, in the amplitude and development of the tendonous apparatus, etc. The length is found with the animal in profile, in the straight and concave categories these are of a medium length and even short; in the sub – convex and convex profiles, more elongated, and even elongated and stylised. The diameter is based on the race and the profile, but fundamentally conditioned by the breeding system, hygiene and feeding.
Carpus: This should be broad, lean, well developed and in the appropriate direction. Deviation in the vertical line, distorts the alignment and annuls the natural means of activity of the animal.
Elbow: This has as its anatomical base the olecranoidea apophysis of the cubitus. Its essential beauty stems from it being elongated and running parallel to the axis of the body.
Back: scapular region. Oblique. Long. Muscle. Freedom of movement.


Croup: the posterior extremities form part of the croup, whose anatomical phase is made up of, in addition to the corresponding muscle plains, the sacring tablet bone and the coxal region. In the contact point, between the lumbar region and the sacring tablet, there should not be an over defined line, with the transition appearing gentle and not being apparent. The amplitude of the croup, which is an essential condition in relation with the different characteristics of the horse, is a consequence of its length and breadth, the first of these is measured by the distance existing between the ventral iliac bone and the ischiatic tuberosity, the breadth is the distance existing between the two ventral iliac bones and the two ischiatic tuberosities. It should be, in average proportions, slightly inclined and muscular.
Thigh: corresponds to the second region of the posterior extremities and the femur is its anatomical base.
Its essential conditions for beauty coincide with the development of its muscular plains and the ease and comfort of its movements, which with its obliquity and longitude should correlate with the different characteristics.
Leg and tibial region: This has as its anatomical base the tibia bone and the fibula, and is made up of four faces or regions and the common calcaneus tendon. The cranial and lateral regions join the muscles involved in flexing of the tarsus and the exterior of the phalanx. The caudal region is made up of the muscles involved in extending of the tarsus and the flexor of the phalanx and the median region has the tibia as its exclusive anatomical base. Its basic conditions lie in the good direction and appropriate longitude and inclination.
Tarsus – metatarsal: “hock joint”. This has four anatomical regions: dorsal, plantar, lateral and median. The proximal half of the plantar region of the tarsus can be catalogued as a calcaneus region. The essential beauties are in its direction, conformation and amplitude. It should not be straight, but should be well directed, ample and lean.