The Danish Warmblood (Dansk Varmblod) is the modern sport horse breed of Denmark. Initially established in the mid-20th century, the breed was developed by crossing native Danish mares with elite stallions from established European bloodlines.
The Danish Warmblood registry was established in mid-20th century. The registry oversees the registration of Danish warmblood foals and approves stallions for breeding. As with most warmblood studbooks, only stallions who meet certain standards are permitted to breed. Foals with approved pedigrees may receive a brand depicting a crown over a wave. One of the more recent of the selectively bred European competition horses is the Danish Warmblood, whose stud book wasn't opened until the 1960s. In a relatively short space of time, however, Danish breeders have succeeded in producing a competition horse they claim to be of superior quality and more versatility than many of the European breeds.
While still a young breed, Danish warmbloods are currently represented at international competitions in both dressage and show jumping. The Danish Warmblood is still an uncommon breed in the United States; however in 2001 a North American Danish Warmblood Association was formed to promote the breed in the U.S.
The best Danish horses have a Thoroughbred outline that is combined with substance, strength, and good legs. They are courageous and spirited, have excellent temperaments, and good free action. They are used as dressage horses and make first-class performers in cross country. Danish horses also make good show jumpers. They can be all solid colors and stand anywhere from 15.3 to 17 hands (63 to 68 inches, 160 to 173 cm).
The Danish Warmblood was founded on Frederiksborg stock, crossed with the Thoroughbred. The resultant local mares were bred to Anglo-Norman stallions, Thoroughbreds, and Trakehners. The mix was adjusted to produce a sound horse of excellent conformation, relatively fixed in type, and with scope and galloping ability.