The Albanian breed is part of the larger Balkan breed. As such, its physical characteristics are very similar to horses in the Balkan region. Specifically, their look and form is similar to those of the horses found in the mountains of Bosnia Herzegovina and the Rodope Mountain Range. When the Ottomans came and established the Ottoman Empire, the native Albanian horses were crossbred with Arab stock in the hope of improving the Albanian gene pool. Out-breeding with the Haflinger was also done to improve balance and ability to work in mountainous terrain.