Most Stunning French Cold Blooded Horse Breeds | Overview of 8 French Equine Cold Breeds from France

A horse enthusiast would know that all the French Cold Blooded horses are stunning as they are, but we have compiled a list of the most stunning cold blooded horses among them.

Here are the horses that we included on this particular list:
  • Ardennais Cold Blooded Horse
  • Trait du Nord Cold Blood Horse Breed
  • Auxois Cold Blooded Horse 
  • Percheron Cold Blood Horse
  • Boulonnais Cold Blooded Horse Breed
  • Breton Cold Blood Horse Breed
  • Comtois Cold Blooded Horse
  • Poitevin Cold Blood Horse Breed

Table of Contents (Horspedia)

Ardennais Cold Blooded Horse originating from France and Belgium

Origin France and Belgium – Ardennes.
HeightAbout 15.3hh.
Color Bay, roan, chestnut.
Character Very calm and gentle; willing. A child could handle it.
Ardennais Cold Blooded Horse

Physique: Massive, compact horse with an immense, muscular frame on short legs. Strong head with a broad face; hugely-crested neck; enormous. chest, both in width and depth; near-circular barrel; vast hindquarters – the whole set on short legs of gigantic proportion, especially in the hocks. Abundant feather. Extremely strong. Ardennais horses reared on poor fare are noticeably lighter in bone and muscle.

History of the Ardennais Cold Blooded Horse

This horse is thought to be the horse praised by Caesar in De Bello Gallico – but it is impossible to know how much mixing of breed it has undergone. since then, or how much wishful thinking there is in identifying it with the willing work-horse of 2,000 years ago. 

It seems certain that it played an instrumental part in the blood of the Great Horses of the Middle Ages, that it contains Oriental and Belgian blood, that it was used by Napoleon to haul his artillery, and that it experienced a period of work as a coach horse (when it was doubtless not such a heavy animal).

Trait du Nord | Gentle and Docile Cold Blood Horse Breed 

Origin France
HeightAbout 16hh.
Color Bay, chestnut, roan. 
Character Very gentle and docile.
Trait du Nord Cold Blood Horse Breed

Physique: Very strong heavy draught horse, weighing approximately 1 ton. Similar to the Ardennais in appearance, though bigger and heavier. 

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Has a heavy head and massive neck, a particularly powerful front deep girth, a muscular body, and strong hindquarters with sloping croup and low set tail. Feather not excessive for a horse of its type. Very hardy.

Origin of the Trait du Nord Cold Blood Horse Breed

The Trait du Nord is a 19th-century offshoot of the Ardennais, bred in the same area of northeast France. It contains additions of Belgian and Dutch Draught blood. The breed was fixed shortly after the turn of the century, and a studbook was opened in 1919.

Auxois Cold Blooded Horse Breed from Burgundy | Kind and Gentle French Horse

Origin France – Burgundy.
Colour Red roan or bay.
Character Quiet, kind, gentle, willing.
Auxois Cold Blooded Horse 

Physique: Strong heavy draught horse, similar to Trait du Nord and Ardennais. Large head with longish ears and a general air of kindliness; short, strong neck; massive front powerful body with deep girth; strong hindquarters with sloping croup and low-set tail. Strong legs with comparatively little feather for a horse of its type. Hardy and enduring.

History of Auxois Cold Blooded Horse 

The Auxois is the old heavy horse of the north-eastern Burgundy. It has existed since at least the Middle Ages and seems original to have been a somewhat smaller and lighter breed. It was used to pull coaches and was also valued as a draught horse. 

The Ardennais became the preferred cross and today’s Auxois carries much Ardennais blood. The breed is now carefully controlled for type and colour.

Percheron | An Energetic Cold Blood Horse Breed from France | Highly Intelligent

Origin France – Perche region (specifically, the Departments Sarthe, Eure-et-Loire, Loire-et-Cher, L’Orne).
Color Gray, black.
Character Energetic, intelligent, docile, easy to handle. 
Percheron Cold Blood Horse

Physique: Fine head with a straight face, wide-spaced, intelligent eyes, open nostrils; strong, crested neck; powerful front with the deep chest; deep. close-coupled body with strong loins; round, immensely-strong hindquarters. 

Medium-short legs, hard and muscular and almost devoid of a feather. Excellent action, great poise and presence. Despite its size, huge frame, and massive strength, the Percheron has a cast of Oriental grace.

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The elegance and origin of the Percheron

Surprising in such a heavy breed, its elegance has caused it to be likened to an overgrown Arab; and indeed some of its ancestors were Arabians. 

It has been distributed all over the world, and wherever it is bred it arouses great enthusiasm and profound attention to quality and purity of line. In France, the true Percheron is allowed only if it is bred in one of the four Departments of its native region of Perche. 

History of Percheron Cold Blood Horse

In North America, to which it was first exported in 1839, it has attracted many sincere admirers and the strictest attention has been and is paid to the production of a perfect type. 

In Great Britain, the Percheron has been bred to exclude all feathers from its feet and is much used as a cross with the Thoroughbred to produce the perfect type of heavyweight hunter.

Uses of Percheron Cold Blood Horse

The Percheron is a rugged, active horse, intelligent and charming. It is easy to handle, economical to keep, and of a sound constitution. It is an attractive mover, poised and balanced. It is the most popular cart horse in the world.

Boulonnais | Lively Cold Blooded Horse Breed from France with nice Personality

Origin France (Northern).
Color Usually gray; sometimes chestnut, bay. 
Character Lively, intelligent, good-natured. 
Boulonnais Cold Blooded Horse Breed

Physique: Elegant heavy draught horse, very similar to the Percheron in appearance. Fine head with a straight or slightly-concave face, faintly reminiscent of the Arab; small ears. 

Strong neck, deep, powerful body with ample front and hindquarters, pronounced dip in the back Short, muscular legs with big joints and little feather. Bushy mane and silky coat. The general effect is of grace and harmony.

Like the Percheron, the Boulonnais has Oriental blood. This, together with an Andalusian strain introduced during the Middle Ages, accounts for its noble appearance. 

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Its strength and size come from the old Great Horses of Northern Europe. A horse that is easy to admire, it both fills the eye and fulfils its function as an active, hard-working farm horse.

Breton | An Attractive Cold Blooded Horse Breed from France Brittany

Origin France – Brittany.
Colour Red roan, blue roan, chestnut, bay; black very rare. 
Character Lively, attractive horse, active, willing, sweet-tempered.
Breton Cold Blood Horse Breed


Three types exist:

  1. Draught Breton: Dense, compact heavy draught horse with attractive head, short, crested neck, deep, powerful body, and short legs with pronounced joints and very little feather
  2. Postier Breton: Medium-weight coach/draught horse standing not much over 15hh, strong and solid, having excellent, clearly-defined action, especially at the trot
  3. Corlay: Coach or saddle horse standing 14.3-15.1hh.

The indigenous horse of north-western France, though developed along separate lines, is still known under the single heading of Breton. Crossed with Percheron, Ardennais and Boulonnais breeds it has given rise to the Draught Breton, while the smart action and lighter build of the Postier Breton is due to Norfolk Trotter and Hackney blood. 

The lightweight Corlay horse, now almost extinct, is the product of crosses with Thoroughbred and Arab.

Comtois Cold Blooded Horse Breed from France | Most Courageous French Horse Type

Origin France- Franche-Comté. 
Colour Solid colours – the bay is the commonest, then chestnut.
Character Courageous, active, kind and willing. 
Comtois Cold Blooded Horse

Physique: Light draught horse with a large head, straight neck, good front and withers. Girth deep, back long and straight, hindquarters strong; legs well-made with good bone, though showing a tendency to sickle hocks. Feather is comparatively light, mane and tail thick. Hardy and sure-footed.

Reared in the rugged hill country of the Franco-Swiss borderland, this horse has developed a quick and lively action unusual in a heavy breed.

It is said to have been brought to the Franche-Comté region as early as the 6th century.

Poitevin | Calm French Cold Blooded Horse Breed with Lazy Personality

Origin France – Poitou. 
Color Usually dun. Can be bay, brown.
Character Sober, dull, lethargic.
Boulonnais Cold Blooded Horse Breed

Physique: Large, gaunt horse, undistinguished and usually unattractive. Heavy head with long, thick ears, short, straight neck; powerful, but often upright, shoulder, inadequate depth of girth for its size and weight, long body; strong, sloping hindquarters; massive legs with heavy feather, very large feet.

Origin of Poitevin Cold Blood Horse Breed

This plain, thick-witted horse was originally imported from the flatlands of Northern Europe to drain the marshes around Poitiers, a job for which it was particularly qualified by virtue of its enormous feet.

Here was our list of the most stunning French Cold Blooded horses.

We hope you enjoyed our picks!