Horse Breeds

Horse Breeds

All you have wanted to know about horse breeds ... it's here! An A-Z list of horse "power" breeds. Get set to learn all about this galloping glory.
We look at him with ardor and adulation. We admire his stature, elegant coat and an awe-inspiring highness. He is none another than the most sure-footed animal ... The Horse. Horse breeds have developed over a span of time. Various parts of the world, now consist of different breeds of horses. Ironically, horses were first tamed in Central Asia between 3000 to 4000 B.C. They were bred for the purpose of meat and dairy products. The 'early man' era was evolving and so were the purposes for which the animal was used. Early man and his discoveries led him to be excessively nomadic in his endeavors, thus employing horses as pack animals. The history of horseback riding traces the era when man rode the horse for the very first time and also used it as a hauler. Before we embark on our quest to know more about horse and horse breeds, let me elucidate the meaning of the term 'breed'. Breeds refer to true breeding populace hence referred to as 'pure breeds'. These true breeds possess innate characteristics that are passed from one generation to the other.

Horse Breeds List with PicturesA comprehensive and in-depth study of breeds accompanied with a complete list of horse breeds is found in this article.

Draft Horses

Draft Horse

Who Is He?
A draft horse breed is a horse employed for performing heavy and exhausting tasks. A huge number of draft breeds exist, but all share the same characteristic behavior of being naive, gentle, calm, obedient and, nevertheless tough and strong as well.

What Does He Look Like?
A muscular built with a tall stature are the characteristic features of the breed. He is packed with erect shoulders, hence his movements are strong and not in the least sluggish. He is best suited for the purpose of pulling because of his physiological constitution of having a short back and solid rear-end. Their built matches the work they do. Yes, heavy is the term that could be put forth for their built and the work they perform. Draft breeds are endowed with heavy bones. In height they range from 16 to 19 hands and weigh 900 kg approximately.

What Does He Do?
Draft breeds were strong and powerful and they were applied to performing heavy duty tasks that involve plowing fields and pulling solid load. Draft breeds served to be the most capable haulers of the per-industrial epoch. Draft breeds were also referred to as the working farm horses. Farm work and pulling wheeled vehicles belonging to the military were also his occupations. At the onset of the 19th century, draft horses, apart from being used as haulers and farm workers, were considered suitable for the purpose of human transit. Draft horses would carry passengers from one place to another, especially during the time when railroads were not a well-established mode of transit and transport. Today, draft horses are ideally used for entering shows and competitions that require strong pulling abilities.

Draft Horse Breed List
  • Abtenauer
  • American Cream Draft
  • Auxios
  • Belgian
  • Draft Breton
  • Clydesdale
  • Dutch Draft
  • East-Bulgarian
  • Fjord Horse
  • Galiceno
  • Groningen horse
  • Haflinger
  • Italian Heavy Draft
  • Jutland
  • Konik
  • Lithuanian Heavy Draft
  • Murgese
  • Nonius
  • Noriker
  • North Swedish horse
  • Orlov Trotter
  • Percheron
  • Pleven
  • Shire horse
  • Suffolk Punch
[Back to Index]

Show Jumping Horses

Show Jumping Horse

Who Is He?
Show jumping breeds branch out from the family tree of English Riding Equestrians. They are also called the 'stadium jumping' breed. They participate in horse shows such as hunters,dressage,eventing and equitation. During horse events, show jumpers are judged with regards to certain guidelines. These are objective guidelines based on a numerical standard they achieve which includes attempting the obstruction and surmounting it in a given period of time. Horse events have certain competitions or rounds called courses. The show jumper courses are complex and technically charged to an extent that the rider and the horse breed are judged on their performances.

What Does He Look Like?
The show jumping or stadium jumping breed has a characteristic height of 16 hands originating from the warmblood or thoroughbred breeding clan. However horses measuring 14 hands approximately have also proved their mantle during international competitions and sports festivals. They have strong, muscular legs and tough feet bottoms. This breed has an athletic built, are tall, look beautiful to the tee and have speed bursting in every drop of blood. Appaloosa horses are a popular show breed with Lipizzaner following suite.

What Does He Do?
Show jumping horses are employed for participating in Olympic and international level competitions. The stadium jumper is brave and faces the challenge of assaying huge fences crossing or circumventing obstacles and hence culminating the course . He has the ability to handle his speed when faced with deep turns to sustain the toughest of the courses.

Show Jumping Breed List
  • Akhal-Teke
  • American Warmblood
  • Arabian
  • Bavarian Warmblood
  • Dutch Warmblood
  • East Bulgarian
  • Estonian Native Horse
  • Falabella
  • Galiceno
  • Gelderland
  • Hackney
  • Haflinger
  • Irish Sport Horse
  • Knabstrup
  • Lipizzaner
  • Mecklenburger
  • Oldenburg
  • SpanishMustang
  • Thoroughbred
  • Trakehner
  • Ukrainian Riding Horse
  • Westphalian
  • Zweibrucken
[Back to Index]

Riding Horses

Riding Horse

Who Is He?
Riding horse breeds have a very warm and docile temperament. This horse breed has a soft disposition and a galloping style that is radically distinctive in its own respect. This Tennessee walking horse has an unparalleled smooth gait best suited for a lazy ride along the silent woods.

What Does He Look Like?
The Riding horse is one of the most beautiful breeds. They have a long neck, chiseled body and tall stature. They have a broad forehead and high-end tail.

What Does He Do?
There are two styles of horse riding that these horses are employed for. They are
  • Western Riding-Western riding is a style of riding that was developed to meet the purpose and needs of the cowboys. This form of riding has taken shape from ranching and warfare patterns and structures. It was a riding style that evolved and metamorphosed into a secure and responsive one as it dealt with training the horse to follow its natural instincts. The horse was trained to respond well with just the light touch of the rein on its body. Reining, Rodeo and Cutting are some of the western 'pleasure' riding events.
  • English Riding-English riding is another horse riding style. All styles feature a flat English saddle minus the deep seat. English riding has events such as show hack, show jumping, dressage and saddle seat, under its wings. A horse breed that is on the verge on extinction is the Mustang. Getting in touch with the Mustang horse facts will aid you save the mustang population.
Riding Horse Breed List
  • Akhal-Teke
  • American albino
  • American Quarter Horse
  • American Warmblood
  • ArabianBanker
  • Bavarian Warmblood
  • Camargue
  • Camarillo White Horse
  • Canadian horse
  • Dales Pony
  • Dutch Warmblood
  • East Bulgarian
  • Estonian Native Horse
  • Exmoor
  • Falabella
  • Friesian
  • Galiceno
  • Gidran
  • Groningen horse
  • Haflinger
  • Hanoverian
  • Holsteiner Icelandic Horse
  • Irish Sport Horse
  • Kabardin
  • Karabakh
  • Knabstrup
  • Konik
  • Lipizzaner
  • Lokai
  • Lusitano
  • Mangalarga Marchador
  • Moroccan Barb
  • Murgese
  • Mustang
  • Noriker
  • Novokirghiz
  • Oldenburg
  • Ostfriesen/Alt-Oldenburger
  • Percheron
  • Peruvian Paso
  • Pleven
  • Rocky Mountain Horse
  • Russian Don
  • Russian Trotter
  • Shetland pony
  • Spanish Mustang
  • Tarpan
  • Tennessee Walking Horse
  • Trakehner
  • Ukrainian Riding Horse
  • Virginia highlander
  • Vyatka
  • Walkaloosa
  • Welsh Pony
  • Westphalian
  • Yonaguni
[Back to Index]

Equestrian Horses

Equestrian Horse

Who Is He?
The Equestrian horse breed as the name suggests, is a breed that is used for work and pleasure purposes. The term 'Equestrianism' refers to the skill of riding or driving horses. Equestrians sport an easy temperament. They have a calm disposition and are controlled well by their riders. Equestrian horses display a trait of grasping instructions quickly and are willing to learn and win in the equestrian sports events.

What Does He Look Like?
The Equestrian is a well built animal. He has a firm frame that helps him perform well in sports events. They sport an arched neck and slopping shoulders. This horse breed is ideally an animal with graceful gallops and high jumps. Ideally sport horses, as Equestrians are often called, must have strong well muscled hind legs. This is also one factor that decides their stride length. These horses are bred according to the stride lengths they attain.

What Does He Do?
The Equestrian is used by the police for certain investigative procedures and they are also used in controlling the herds on the cattle farm. Equestrians are used in sports activities and events such as endurance racing, dressage, show jumping, vaulting, horse racing, driving and rodeo. Horses are also used for recreational purposes where the horse is involved in activities such as trail riding or hackling. The Equestrians are used in public services such as parades and funerals, by police and crime tracers.

Equestrian Horse Breed List
  • Irish Sport Horse
  • Lipizzaner
  • Mecklenburger
  • Rocky Mountain Horse
  • Spanish Mustang
  • Thoroughbred
  • Welsh Pony
[Back to Index]

Work Horses

Work Horse

Who Is He?
The Work Horse breed is a domestic horse breed that is bred by home owners for work purposes. A valuable characteristic of this breed is that it displays a calm and quiet disposition. Focusing on his movements, one could say that his quiet temperament reflects in the way he moves. He adopts a slow tempo. Although he could be fast when required which makes this horse breed suitable for carrying out works in small farms and households. Health care for a horse is essential. To keep the horse fit, fine and kicking it is advisable to feed the salt blocks in a small quantity. After all, a work horse breed is a domestic help and one needs to look after his well-being!

What Does He Look Like?
The horse breed is strong and heavily built. It is short and has a head that is non-elevated. The hind quarters are strong and sturdily built, sure-footed and well muscled legs. The movement of the breed has to be easygoing yet spacious. It is capable of putting in effort and working hard for long and stretched periods of time.

What Does He Do?
The draft or the work horse breed is an animal known for its physical prowess, its strength as it can transport goods and drag carts and plow the field. They are also used for the purpose of commuting. Commuters ride them as mounts or use them as haulers to carry goods, referring to them as pack animals. A team of horses is also used to pull wheeled vehicles. They are referred to as harness animals.

Work Horse Breed List
  • Akhal-Teke
  • American Quarter Horse
  • Bavarian Warmblood
  • Breton
  • Canadian horse
  • Cleveland Bay
  • Clydesdale
  • Dutch Draft
  • Estonian Native Horse
  • Fjord Horse
  • Florida Cracker
  • Friesian
  • Galiceno
  • Groningen horse
  • Haflinger
  • Italian Heavy Draft
  • Java pony
  • Jutland
  • Kabardin
  • Konik
  • Lithuanian Heavy Draft
  • Lokai
  • Mangalarga Marchador
  • Merens Pony
  • Morab
  • Morgan
  • Murgese
  • Nonius
  • Noriker
  • North Swedish horse
  • Novokirghiz
  • Percheron
  • Russian Don
  • Russian Trotter
  • Shire horse
  • Spanish Mustang
  • Tennessee Walking Horse
  • Vyatka
[Back to Index]

Race Horses

Race Horse

Who Is He?
The Race horse breed is also referred to as the hot blood horse breed. The hot blood horse breed is fiery in nature, when we consider their temperament. They are passionate plus difficult to handle. They are animals that are known for their speed. During their speed bursts, they even possess a torrential potential to hurt or injure themselves. They can get wild and could surpass their power or capability of their body and endurance levels. They are high on the front of injuring themselves when they have to escape from a frightening situation, are upset about being migrated from one place to another.

What Does He Look Like?
The hot blood horses are considered to be the most expensive horses. A body part that needs to taken care of by its owners is the legs. The hot blood horse breeds legs are very delicate and need to be taken care of and handled in an appropriate manner. The most distinct feature of the race horse breed is a broad chest, short legs and back and a slender frame. The bone structure of the leg allows the hot blooded animal to gallop with quick, long and consistent movements. Its height ranges between 15 to 17 hands and they weigh around 1000 lbs. As a horse owner, you could prepare rice bran for this breed as they breathe and live for speed and require the nutrition which rice bran provides. Their color pattern ranges from chestnut, seal brown, black to white and palomino.

What Does He Do?
A thoroughbred or a race horse is known to be the ultimate choice for racing and its characteristic speed. Different types of races involve different race horses. The thoroughbred races distances at a very fast speed. The standard-bred use their racing capabilities in harness racing. The Arabian is the final word for races that measure endurance levels. The Quarter horses show their prowess in sprinting short distances. These horses possess different complex muscle structures that make them suitable for different races types.

Race Horse Breed List
  • American Warmblood
  • Arabian
  • Oldenburg
  • Thoroughbred
  • Trakehner
[Back to Index]

Dressage Horses

Dressage Horse

Who Is He?
Dressage is a platform rather a pathway of horse training for competitions held at primary or international levels. Treating your horse the right way is a very important tip that must be imparted to a horse owner. During the renaissance era the dressage as a technique was recognized as an equestrian pursuit in the west. A calm, peaceful and consistent behavior pattern is what characterizes the dressage horse breed. A horse that carries a character in himself, is easily manageable and has the willingness to be trained. The warm bloods are predominantly good-tempered. They possess an appreciable competitive streak.

What Does He Look Like?
The dressage horse breed has extremely refined features. The height ranges from 15 to 17 hands, have graceful movements, an attractive neck. It has light, almost smooth flowing trotting movements and gliding canter that is inevitable by its enviable bone structure. It has slopping shoulders a long back, strong joints and sturdy feet.

What Does He Do?
A dressage is particularly an egalitarian competition where all the breeds are given an opportunity to participate. The horse breeds that perform the dressage, participate in events such as the school jumps or airs above the ground, where the horse gallops in such a manner that the act is no less than viewing a horse 'flying'. Hence the name 'airs above the ground'. This includes the capriole the courbete, the croupade and the levade. The horses that are trained and accordingly perform the airs above the ground include the Andalusians, Lipizzan and Lusitano. They can perform this dressage event smoothly due to their strong hindquarters which enables them to attempt complex movements.
An intriguing fact that must be noted is that the mane of the horse participating in the event is neatly braided on the right. The horses appear with their hoofs polished, a clean coat and white markings that make them look all the more professional.

Dressage Horse Breed List
  • American Warmblood
  • Arabian
  • Bavarian Warmblood
  • Camargue
  • Dales Pony
  • Dutch Warmblood
  • East Bulgarian
  • Estonian Native Horse
  • Friesian Horse
  • Gelderland
  • Hackney
  • HaflingerHolsteiner
  • Icelandic Horse
  • Knabstrup
  • Lipizzaner
  • Lusitano
  • Mangalarga Marchador
  • Mecklenburger
  • Oldenburg
  • Spanish Mustang
  • Thoroughbred
  • Trakehner
  • Ukrainian Riding Horse
  • Welsh Pony
  • Westphalian
  • Zweibrucken
[Back to Index]

Driving Horses

Driving Horse

Who Is He?
The driving horse breed are breeds that can be employed to pull carts, harness, carriage and wagons. The driving technique includes harness racing, pleasure driving and farm work. These breeds are not aggressive, have a long life expectancy, active pace, are very intelligent and evince a great willingness to learn and get trained.

What Does He Look Like?
The driving breeds include Friesan and Hanoverian to name a few. The breed has a medium chest width, the tail is low set and the mane is full and thick in appearance. The shoulders are slopping, full of strength and vigor. The back is short and broad. Their limbs are short and strong that help them have a smooth and consistent pace.

What Does He Do?
The driving horses are used for certain events such as harness driving- an activity that involves racing in harness by pulling a very light weight cart. This cart is known as sulky. Another type of harness racing involves a horse or a team of horses compete in a pulling competition. The winner is chosen by judging as to which horse or horse team pulled the maximum light weight for short distances. Combined driving involves a pair, three and four horses in a group to pull light weight carriages. The competition is judged on the basis of endurance and precision. Draft horse races are competitions involving two, three and four horses in a team and judged on manners and performance. Pleasure driving also known as carriage driving are competitions where a team of three horses are connected to a light vehicle and are shown for a walk. They are judged on the basis of manners. Fine harness, also called formal driving involves a harness a team of horses connected to an appropriately designed vehicle where the harness is judged and the winner declared on the basis of actions and dramatic performances. Roadster is another activity specifically meant for ponies. The prime focus of judging is manners and performance. The road gait and at speed are two types of trots where the ponies are exhibited.

Driving Horse Breeds
  • American albino
  • American Quarter Horse
  • Exmoor
  • Friesian
  • Gelderland
  • Gidran
  • Haflinger
  • Hanoverian
  • Kabardin
  • Lokai,
  • Lusitano
  • Mecklenburger
[Back to Index]

Pony Horses

Pony Horse

Who Is He?
Ponies are a breed who are small and fluffy. Ponies are considered a breed that is friendly but they may sometimes act stubborn and wild. Ponies are thought of as a docile breed but this notion,sometimes, might disappoint you.

What Does He Look Like?
Ponies are small in size but they are much stronger than horses. They can carry a passenger and entertain riders. They have a muscular body structure short legs, thick and fluffy mane, a bulky body, heavy bones and a broad forehead.

What Does He Do? Ponies are seen in many sports festivals. Some pony breeds are used for the purpose of riding, for instance the Hackney pony and some used for the purpose of driving such as the Connemara pony. Welsh pony is used for both riding and driving. Ponies are also used as pack animals and are also a part of children parties or a get-together.

Pony Breed List
  • Banker
  • Dales Pony
  • Exmoor
  • Java pony
  • Konik
  • Shetland pony
  • Virginia highlander
  • Vyatka,
  • Welsh Pony
  • Yonaguni
[Back to Index]

I would also like to furnish this article with a brief note on horse health and diseases. It is mandatory for a horse lover to pay attention to horse health troubles. Worms, arthritis, equines crushing disease can spell disaster for your horse's health. Equine lyme disease is another fatal condition that the horse can endure. The equine lyme disease symptoms are not easily detected, hence the horse owner needs to keep a vigilant eye on the behavior and temperament of the horse. Colic in horses is also a threatening condition that needs to be prevented. An interesting fact worth sharing is that horses are extremely expressive creatures. Their facial expressions determine their moods. Their nostrils and eyes say it all! This feature can aid the horse owner to comprehend if the horse is ill and needs veterinary attention.