what is a drum?

The Drum Horse is an important member of the Queen of England’s Band of the Life Guards. It's name comes from a “job” performed by the horse. These horses carry two large silver kettle Drums, plus a fully outfitted rider, through crowds of thousands, during the Queen’s processions! The horse is guided simply by the legs and feet of the rider. Drum Horses must be strong enough to carry the weight of the large drums and the drummer, often in excess of 300 pounds. They must also remain calm and sensible in crowded environments during ceremonies. It takes a very special horse to fill such a role!

The Drum Horse must be a proven combination of any of the following breeds: Shire, Clydesdale, and Gypsy Horse, where no single breed listed above exceeds 87% of the total make-up and the percentage of Gypsy horse blood does not fall below 6.25%.  They combine the size and stature of the Shire and Clydesdale with the color and hair of the Gypsy horse to create an animal that possesses the best traits of each breed.


  Originally found only in England in service to the Queen, the Drum horse is now quickly growing in popularity here in the U.S and internationally and is being redefined for use in various ridden and driven disciplines. Slightly lighter than their full-blood relatives the Drum horse makes a talented athletic mount which can compete successfully in many ridden and driven disciplines. The purpose of the Drum horse as a breed is to develop a new heavy horse breed that utilizes the best examples of the Shire, Clydesdale, and Gypsy breeds, while focusing on breeding for athleticism, agility, and performance ability for all ridden disciplines. This preserves the Clydesdale, Shire and Gypsy horse breeds as they should be, and provides a new breed to fill the desire of a riding horse with the best attributes of these other breeds. 


Although the Queen’s Drum Horses are usually piebald or skewbald in color it is not uncommon to see them in solid colors as well. Drum horses today can be found in any color and pattern due to the Gypsy ancestry in their breeding. 

​​The International Drum Horse Association was established in the United States in 2006 to promote and preserve the Drum Horse here in America and abroad. At Regalus we are proud to support The International Drum Horse Association as they are the foremost Drum horse registry in the United States and internationally. Click below to visit their website and learn more!