The old Zhemaichu type was small in size (up to 144 cm in height); it had a small straight or somewhat dished face head with a wide forehead. The neck was well muscled, the trunk undersized, the withers not too high, the black flat and solid, and the legs clean and firm. Their small height and consequently insufficient strength were the main deficiencies.
The modern Zhemaichu formed in the post-war years by pure breeding and the selection of large individuals with high work endurance, and through limited crossbreeding with North Swedish stallions, is taller (152-154 cm), has a somewhat extended trunk (157-160 cm) and a very massive body with a girth of 188-190 cm, as well as clean legs with a cannon bone girth of 10-20 cm. The new intra-breed type has retained the characteristic exterior features of the old Zhmudka.
The Zhemaichu is a very good combination of utility and sporting horse features. It is quite strong and has good endurance and agility. The best time shown in 2 km trotting draught tests with a pull of 50 kg is 4 min 42.6 sec. The Zhemaichu has also shown good results in steeplechases of average difficulty. It is not accidental therefore that in their time Lithuanian horses were the foundation for breeding the Trakehnen.
Their massive and clean build combined with their sporting potential make the breed valuable material for breeding medium-sized horses for large-scale equestrian sport and tourism.
The Zhemaichu also known as the Zhmudka since the 16th century is a forest type of native Lithuanian breed. The Zhemaichu are highly adjustable and have long been sent overseas to Western Europe. The earlier breeds of Zhemaichu were smaller but the modern Zhemaichu after the post-war years are much larger. This was accomplished through pure breeding and limited crossbreeding with North Swedish stallions. This created a modern Zhemaichu with a somewhat longer trunk, massive body, as well as having great endurance but still maintaining the distinguishing exterior features of the early breed of Zhmudka. The Zhemaichu was a foundation breed for the Trakehnen. The Zhemaichu is very strong with great stamina and agility. These horses are used for utility and sporting events such as steeplechases. The Zhemaichu make quality breeding material to medium-sized horses for sport and tourism because of their massive size and clean build. The Zhemaichu stallions are also being used to help develop the new meat-producing breed in the Altai.