Horse Isle 3: Big Book of Breeds
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Big Book of Breeds
Our Massive Real World Equine Reference!

[ INDEX ] Equine Type: Mule Breed: Mule   [ PREV ] [ NEXT ]
A mule is a cross between a jack (male donkey) and a mare (female horse).

Mules were first created thousands of years ago, and were in widespread use ever since, because they could work the same amount of work like a horse for less feed. for centuries, mules were primarily used for pack work because of their endurance and strength. While riding mules wasn't rare, it was also not nearly as common as riding horses.

The usage of mules continued well into the 20th century, as mules proved valuable pack animals during wartime. Today, however, many people breed and use mules for recreational riding rather than pack work, and some even compete mules in athletic disciplines such as show-jumping and dressage.

The conformation of mules combines traits from both their donkey sire and horse dam. The ears and heads of mules are noticeably long, and resemble the ears of a donkey rather than the ears of a horse. Their bodies, however, are wider and more muscular than the body of a donkey, although their muscles are smoother than the muscles of a horse. The hooves of mules can be as large as the hooves of a horse, but are more oval and upright in shape, a trait which they inherit from the donkey sire. The withers of mules are also flatter than the withers of a horse, but their back is deeper than seen in donkeys.

Mules should not be confused with hinnies, which are a cross between a stallion and a jenny (female donkey), even though the two are morphologically indistinguishable (see 'Hinny' for more info).

An interesting noticeable difference between mules and hinnies is in their herd behavior and dynamics. Mules find it easier to befriend horses and behave like them, while hinnies prefer the company of donkeys. This difference is explained by the different education which mule foals and hinny foals receive from their mothers.

Mules can come in all colors and patterns that exist in horses except for: double-cream dilutes, pearl and cream pearl, frame overo, full-body corn roan, manchado, metallic, mushroom, rabicano, splashed-white, and sabino-1 (although white-spotted sabino does exist in mules). Their coat lacks white markings except for the occasional star, unless it is pinto or leopard, in which case markings can vary.

Mules come in a variety of sizes, from miniature to large. The tallest mule ever recorded stood 19hh, and therefore, in Horse Isle, mules cannot exceed 19hh.

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