The origin of the horse is known as Eohippus, it is estimated that it is approximately 55 million years old. The fossil of this specimen was discovered in North America in 1867. This specimen was about 30 centimeters, with pads on the legs (four in front and three behind) living in the jungle areas and swamps. This specimen spread to Europe in the period called the Eocene.
The species evolved due to climatic changes, resulting in various types such as: the Mesohippus descended from Eohippus, which was a little older, had three fingers on each leg and a more efficient denture that allowed it to eat a more varied vegetation, existing 25 to 40 million years ago, the descendant of this specimen is the Miohippus, then the Merychippus, this specimen had a certain resemblance to the donkey, with the difference that it had a greater finger in the center, which helped it to reach great speed and travel greater distances. Dinohippus and Pliohippus were the first species that had helmets formed, the side fingers had disappeared, it existed two to five million years ago. In the glacial era, the number of these ancestors of the horse was decreasing until they became extinct from the American continent approximately eight thousand years ago.
The specimens that survived began to spread from Asia to Europe and Africa being the predecessors of the horse that we know today as Equus caballus. Its evolution corresponds mainly to four basic types, from which the existing breeds descend; the solid type forest horse, with head and large hoofs, it is very possible that he was the founder of cold-blooded horses and draft breeds, the plateau horse, of finer type, descend the small and resistant semi-wild Mongolian horses. The steppe horse, of a lighter type, originated the oriental races, such as Arabic and barbel, which are the predecessors of pure blood. The tundra horse was of a large and heavy type, like the Yukat from the polar regions, it seems to be the only descendant.
There is evidence that the horse was domesticated five or six thousand years ago, the first to venture into the domestication of the horse were the nomadic tribes, as they traveled through the regions of the Caspian and Black Seas.
In the classification of the post-glacial horses of the Old World that the first domesticators handled, there is no talk of species but of several types:
- The Celtic pony of Ewart, better known as the Atlantic pony. The modern breeds that most resemble it are the Exmoor and a certain Icelandic sub-race.
- The Scandinavian horse of Ewart, lived in northern Eurasia. The modern breeds that most resemble are the pony of the Norwegian fjords, a certain type of pony from the Highlands and the heavy draft horse Noriker.
- The horse of Central Asia. The modern breeds that most resemble it are the Portuguese horse Soraya, clay color, and with a more sterilized shape, the Akhal-Teké of Central Asia and the Karabakh, both chestnut-golden. Being the predecessors of the Niseana and Bactrian races, which contributed 59%, through the Turkish, Bactrian and Andalusian horses, to the creation of English thoroughbred.
- The horse that inhabits West Asia. The modern race that most resembles it is the Caspian pony, apparently predecessor of Arabic and a handful of related races that are mainly found in Persia. This type has given rise to countless domestic races, to which he has bequeathed many of his qualities, including his beauty.
The Przewalski horse, characterized by an embryonic cell structure, its cell nuclei contain a certain number of chromosomes, which are considered carriers of hereditary factors. The chromosomal endowment of this specimen differs numerically from that presented by domestic horses.
The Tarpan, wild horse from Eastern Europe and Western Russia. Its extinction occurs in the last century, it has been <<rebuilt>> in the Polish yeguadas, it is by nature, hybrid. Used by all the peoples of the eastern Mediterranean, ranging from the Celtic tribes, the Hittites to the Greeks who had knowledge of the chariot. This specimen is the main ancestor of the peasant horse of Central Eastern Europe and the Balkans.
There are various races that have similarities such as the Hungarian Goral, the Romanian Hucul, the Polish Konik, the Bosnian of Yugoslavia, etc.
Various vestiges show that the horse existed in the Paleolithic period, according to cave paintings.