Most current breeds are the result of cross-breeding and genetic modifications carried out by men over time. Today, 51 French or foreign breeds are recognised and managed by the National stud farms. Each of these breeds has a stud book, a tool exhibiting the pedigree of each horse and recording the individuals born in the breed.
Today, 51 French or foreign breeds are recognised and managed by the national stud farms.
Horses are thus classified as thoroughbreds, ponies, draft horses and donkeys. The first two categories are used for leisure, sport and mounted work (police, forest rangers, etc.). Draft horses still work occasionally in the fields (organic farming) or in the woods (logging), and even sometimes in show business companies. However, the use of these horses for work remains anecdotal and does not ensure their sustainability. Each of these categories is divided into several breeds which continue to be improved by men. Although the uses of horses have changed over the centuries, their morphological and physical characteristics continue to legitimise their various uses. Accordingly, the French saddle horse is considered one of the best breeds for show jumping, while the English thoroughbred is perfect for racing at the gallop.