Campolina Horse

The Campolina horse breed was developed by Cassiano Campolina, after whom the breed is named, on his farm in Entre Rios de Minas, Minas Gerais in Brazil. While Campolina began his horse farm activities in 1857, it was not until 1870 that the breed was finally developed after he bred a black mare called Medeia, a Brazilian horse that was a gift of a friend to an Andalusian stallion that belonged to Maiano Procopio. The stallion was given to Procopio by Dom Pedro II, the last emperor of Brazil. The offspring was a lovely dark gray colt named Monarca and he is considered the founder of the breed. He served 25 years as the stallion to Campolina's herd.

Campolina was intent on breeding great horses, as his letters show. So he sought other bloodlines to improve the breed. Other breeds that were introduced by Campolina into his herd included Anglo-Norman, Clydesdale, Holsteiner and the American Saddle Horse. He used Mangalarga Marchador breed to refine the Campolina horse, making it more elegant and high stepping. After his death, his work was continued and finally the Campolina line seemed stable. In 1934, the standard for the Campolina breed was created. The Professional Consortium of Campolina Horse Breeders was formed in 1938 and they formally organized the breed. Later on the group was renamed to the Campolina Breeders Association and the breed standards were formally adopted, with the organization based in Belo Horizonte.
There were other changes to the breed standard in 1975 and 1993. There are currently about 85,000 registered Campolina horses and a few more than 7,300 registered breeders, most of them in Brazil.

The breed is fairly large and its coat comes in many colors although many believe that the most beautiful Campolinas are silver-grey. Other popular colors include dun, bay, buckskin, and "Pampa" or Pinto. Some Campolina have markings such as white socks or a star on the forehead, as well. They are used for pleasure riding for the most part and also for driving. They have a strong constitution and a good temperament as well. There is a very small dressage community in Brazil and the Campolina is used for this event too. The Campolina horse has a prominent nose curvature and curvature of the crest. It is the largest of the Brazilian gaited horses and has a four-beat ambling gait that is called the true marcha or marcha verdadeira.