Thought people might be interested in this research done in Egypt on the Arabian Horse. Below is a Pubmed (a service of the US National Database of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health) abstract for the article which appeared in the December 2006 issue of the Journal of Animal Breeding and Genetics.
"J Anim Breed Genet. 2006 Dec;123(6):369-77.
Factor analysis of body measurements in Arabian horses.
Sadek MH, Al-Aboud AZ, Ashmawy AA.
Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Agriculture, Ain Shams
University, Hadayeq Shoubra, Cairo, Egypt. email@example.com
Data of 13 body measurements have been analysed from 166 Arabian horses,
123 mares and 43 stallions, ranging from 49 to 298 months of age,
belonging to Alzahraa stud, Cairo, Egypt. General linear model was used to
study age and gender effects on these measures. Gender was a significant
source of variation for most studied traits, but not for neck girth,
cannon bone circumference of fore and hind legs, and pastern girth of fore
and hind legs. Age significantly affected pastern girths of fore and hind
legs and cannon bone circumference of fore legs, while there was no
significant effect on the other measurements. Pearson correlations,
adjusted for age effect, between measurements were estimated and ranged
from 0.02 to 0.84 for mares and from -0.05 to 0.90 for stallions. Factor
analysis with promax rotation for each gender was carried out to derive
fewer independent common factors. Three factors were extracted which
accounted for 66% and 67% of the total variance in mares and stallions
respectively. The first, second and third factors in mares tended to
describe body thickness, leg thickness and general size respectively;
whereas in stallions they tended to differentiate among general size, leg
thickness and body thickness respectively. The three extracted factors for
each gender determine the main sources of shared variability that control
body conformation in Arabian horses. These factors could be considered in
selection programmes to acquire highly coordinated bodies in pure Arabian
horses with fewer measurements.
PMID: 17177691 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]"