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The Paso Fino Horse

The Rolls Royce of Riding Horses

Like all horses of Spanish descent, the Paso Fino has a distinctive carriage. His proud bearing presents an unmistakable image - a mystique - that is regal, exuberant, graceful and athletic. Paso Finos, indeed, represent some of the finest breeding in horses ever known.

As a breed, the Paso Fino was relatively unknown in the U.S. before the 1940's, despite their introduction into South America, Puerto Rico and Hispanola (the Dominican Republic) and other islands, some 500 years ago. As a type, the Paso Fino, or "horse with the fine step", has been legendary throughout its homeland for centuries. Bred from the mounts of the Conquistadors, the Paso Fino blends the blood of Andalusian, Barb and Spanish Jennet ancestors. Many accounts credit the Paso Fino with preserving the blood and type of the long lost Narragansette pacer, hundreds of which were exported to the centers of Spanish type horse breeding in the islands off the east coast of the Americas.

Visit these Paso Fino Horse Associations:

Paso Fino Horse Association

Paso Finos are dramatically beautiful horses. They present a proud silhouette, of stately, yet energetic grace. A refined head, long, flowing mane and tail, majestic, arched neck, deeply expressive eyes and uncanny athletic ability are all common-place among the breed. Most are compact, yet powerful looking animals with deep chests and broad, well-sprung barrels. Dry legs reveal tough tendons and refined, yet strong, bone structure. Catlike, quick and sure-footed, they are also known for hard, sturdy hooves and under normal riding conditions may never need shoes. Size varies between 13.2 and 15.2 hands, weighing in from 700 to 1100 pounds, with average being around 14 hands and 900 pounds.

Considered a "hot-blooded" horse, Pasos are sensitive, yet tough, well suited to demanding tasks from cattle ranch work, to dressage to competitive trail riding. They are people loving horses and respond remarkably to kind words and positive attention.

Paso Finos represent the rainbow of horse colors, from splashy pintos and to less brightly marked bays, blacks and chestnuts, to elegant greys, roans and ever-popular palominos and buckskins.

The hallmark of the breed is the four-beat gait for which this type of horse, and later the breed, was named, the Paso Fino. This gait, claimed as the birthright of all Paso Fino horses, is a lateral gait with equal timing between each footfall. The gait is performed at three levels of speed and collection. The Classic Fino is the epitome of collection, control and extravagance. The horse nearly dances in place, with the feet rapidly hitting the ground in quick, evenly-spaced, four-beat succession. Despite the rapid footfall, advancement is minimal, and the horse proceeds at about the same rate as a slow walk. The Paso Corto compares in speed to a medium trot or rack and is the ideal trail gait for a Paso. Faster than the Fino, it covers more ground, smoothly and efficiently. A horse in good condition can maintain this gait for hours without tiring, while the smoothness of gait allows the rider to do the same. Finally, the Paso Largo maintains the least collection and the most speed. Smoothness of gait varies.

There are currently more than 250,000 Paso Finos estimated worldwide. Having enjoyed tremendous growth, in excess of 60%, since 1992, the Paso Fino Horse Association moved its offices from Bowling Green, Florida to Plant City, Florida, in 1995. They have over 30,000 horses and 7,000 members. The World Cup, or Mundial, is sponsored by an international organization, CONFEPASO (Confederation of Paso Fino) which represents eight countries, Europe, the United States, Puerto Rico, Columbia, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Panama and Aruba for the purpose of international promotion and competition.

For more information on Paso Fino horses contact:

The Paso Fino Horse Association
101 North Collins Street
Plant City, FL 33566-3311
(813) 719-7777
or visit their web site at: