Also Known By: Basque, Vasca (Spanish)
The Pottok is an ancient breed of small horse found in the Basque region of Spain and France. Although originally wild, today all Pottok have owners. Traditionally they are gathered on the last Wednesday of January, branded for identification and either sold or returned to the hills as breeding stock.
The Pottok is considered a tough animal with considerable endurance. They are an
integral part of traditional Basque life. In the past they have been used primarily as pack animals and to work in the mines. Since the late 1970s, they came into demand as riding animals, particularly as children's mounts due to their calm disposition.
Today it is bred out of its native mountain region and has found considerable acceptance as a dressage mount. In 1983, a purebred Pottok named Kuzko was French National Champion in a discipline combining dressage and show jumping. The Pottok has also been found to be an outstanding harness animal.
Hendricks, Bonnie L., International Encyclopedia of Horse Breeds, Univ of Oklahoma Press, 1995.
Mason, I.L. 1996. A World Dictionary of Livestock Breeds, Types and Varieties. Fourth Edition. C.A.B International. 273 pp.