Equine: Definition of Equine
Equine what is? the Latin word equīnus came to Castilian as equine. This term can be used as an adjective to refer to everything related to the horse and as a noun to refer specifically to an animal that belongs to the so-called equine species (which includes the horse).
Horses or equids are part of the group of perissodactyls, whose specimens are overweight, have an odd number of fingers – the middle finger being the one with the most significant development – and have hooves at the end of their extremities. What characterizes equines, and differentiates them from the rest of the perissodactyls, is that each limb ends in a single finger.
Currently, only one equine genus survives, called Equus, which emerged in the Quaternary period about 2.59 million years ago. But a long time ago, there were other extinct genera, which are known today thanks to the discovery of fossils in different places.
Various species of horses, zebras, and donkeys (asses) are the current exponents of Equus and therefore of equines in general. While zebras live in the wild, donkeys and horses were domesticated by humans, although some undomesticated species persist.
Beyond their differences, all equines share characteristics, such as the fact that they have elongated legs that end in a single toe covered by the hoof (a large nail). They also have slender bodies.
The best-known equine is the horse. It is a long-necked herbivorous animal with mane (bristles) on its back.
The female horse is called a mare. The offspring, meanwhile, are called fillies or fillies (when females) and foals or foals (males).
The domestication of this horse took place around the year 3600 BC on the Asian continent. Man uses the horse as a pack animal or means of transport and in different sports activities (riding, racing or turf, etc.). Even in many countries, its meat is consumed.
It is possible to recognize many breeds of horse, such as the Arabian horse, the Andalusian, the Breton, the Criollo, the Friesian, and the Peruvian Paso. According to the coat (the color of the skin), on the other hand, one can distinguish between sorrel, chestnut, and gray horses, among many others.
Donkeys and zebras, other kinds of equine
The donkey or ass is an equine less solid and fast than the horse and generally more minor but more resistant and long-lived. Its use as pack animals is daily in rural areas, although in recent decades, machines have replaced them.
The zebra stands out for its white stripes on a black background. Unlike horses and donkeys, it has not been successfully domesticated.
It should be noted that there are several equine hybrids. In this sense, we can name the mule (a cross between a donkey and a mare), the hinny (horse and donkey), the Cabrillo (zebra and mare), and the zebras (donkey and zebra).