19 Different Types of Horse Breeds (With Pictures)

Different Types of Horse Breeds
Photo by Fabian Burghardt

What are the different types of horse breeds you can find worldwide? And what distinguishing qualities set them apart?

In our thorough article about horse breeds, you can find the answers to these and other questions. 

Furthermore, a horse breed is an animal that has been selected for specific characteristics over many generations. 

These characteristics have been passed down from one generation to another through selective breeding. 

In addition, the essential characteristic of any horse breed is its type. Additionally, this refers to how it looks, behaves, and performs in various situations. 

Additionally, it also includes its temperament or personality. Other characteristics include size, color, coat, height, conformation, movement, and soundness.

Some of the most different types of horse breeds;

How Many Types of Horse Breeds Are There?

How many types of horses are there? There are over 2,500 recognized breeds of horses worldwide.

The number keeps growing every year. Horses have been around since prehistoric times.

They are considered man’s best friend and companion. In addition to being ridden or driven, they also serve as pack animals, pulling carts and plows.

There are currently over 2,500 recognized horse breeds worldwide. Some are rare, some common, and some even extinct.

Different Types of Horse Breeds

1. Arabian

by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

One of the oldest breeds in existence, the Arabian Horse, is a descendant of the horses raised in the harsh environment of the Arabian Peninsula hundreds of years ago. 

In the past, Bedouin tribe members would shelter their horses at night inside their tents. 

Additionally, they needed a kind disposition and the capacity to create strong ties with people.

And the willingness to live close to people. These traits still make them a popular choice today. 

2. American Saddlebred

American Saddlebred
by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The American Saddlebred is one of the world’s different types of horse breeds.

Additionally, the American Saddlebred was developed in the United States during the 19th century by crossing Thoroughbreds with Morgan Horses

It is characterized by its long legs, high withers, and short back. It is used as a showhorse, but it is also used as a riding horse. 

Furthermore, these horses are also bright and spirited since they were bred for intertribal combat and raids. Thus they are less advised for new owners. 

Unquestionably one of the most exquisite and attractive horses, the Arabian Horse is distinguished by its unusual head form and high tail carriage. 

Furthermore, they have extraordinary endurance, and while they are quick in a sprint, they shine while racing over longer distances. 

3. Appaloosa Horse

Appaloosa Horse
by gailhampshire is licensed under CC BY 2.0

A popular breed of spotted horses for generations has been the Appaloosa. In America, it’s pretty well-liked.

In addition to their fantastic beauty, Appaloosas make a trustworthy, kind, and amiable companion.  

Additionally, they are a terrific breed for equestrians since they are constantly willing and ready to please. 

The Nez Perce replicated the Appaloosa for use in conflict, hunting, and transportation. In addition, the Appaloosa horse of today is still a versatile animal.  

Make use of long-distance trail riding, rodeo competitions, working cattle, English and Western riding competitions, etc. 

It is a fun, amiable, and gratifying companion because it is such a kind and friendly Horse. 

4. Thoroughbred

by Rennett Stowe is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Thoroughbreds are known for being fast, energetic, and intelligent. They are also extremely loyal, affectionate, and friendly. 

They are excellent family pets due to their calm demeanor and gentle nature. However, they can be stubborn if you don’t know what you’re doing.

The Thoroughbred is a breed that originated in England in the 17th and 18th centuries and is related to the warhorses of the Middle Ages. 

When horses were no longer necessary to pull armored knights into combat, Arabian, Turkoman, and Barb stallions were imported to England to breed with native mares. 

This was done to make a lighter, faster, and more maneuverable mount. 

5. American Quarter Horse

American Quarter Horse
by Lisa Andres is licensed under CC BY 2.0

American Quarter Horse is also one of the different types of horse breeds.

This is one of the few breeds of horses that appeals to both beginning and advanced riders equally. 

Additionally, American quarter horses are calm and athletic, and agile. 

In the 1600s, English thoroughbreds and Native American Chickasaw horses were crossed to create the first generation of these horses. 

However, with almost 3 million horses still in existence, American quarter horses are usually the most prevalent breed of Horse in the US. 

In addition, these horses perform well in both trail and show ring competitions. It also has a faster top speed than most other horse breeds, reaching 55 mph. 

6. Tennessee Walking Horse

Tennessee Walking Horse
by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Tennessee walking horses are unique as they are not only used for pleasure but also for work.

These horse breeds are very useful as they can carry loads up to 100 pounds without difficulty. 

Moreover, they are great at pulling heavy loads on rough terrain.

Additionally, they are also good at carrying people. Many are trained to assist people who cannot walk or ride. 

7. Friesian

by Daisyree Bakker is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Although it has a relatively small frame for a working horse of this sort, the Friesian is technically a draft horse from the Netherlands. 

Additionally, it is a versatile creature with numerous applications, both in harness and under saddle, being a graceful and agile horse with a calm disposition. 

Friesians are frequently seen pulling carriages for leisure and competitive purposes, exceptionally skilled in dressage competition. 

Furthermore, they are frequently utilized in TV and film because of their appealing beauty and calm demeanor. 

In addition, they look impressive enough for the camera, but they typically don’t seem phased by the usual set commotion. 

8. Morgan Horse

Morgan Horse
by Selena N is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Next on our list of different types of horse breeds is the Morgan Horses.

Due to their adaptability, Morgan horses are well-liked. This breed is frequently utilized in Western and English competitions. 

Additionally, this horse breed originated in the US and is frequently seen competing in sports, including endurance riding, cutting, Western Pleasure, show jumping, and dressage. 

Globally, there were about 175,000 Morgan horses in 2005. Cooperative and willing to please, Morgan horses are a popular breed

Additionally, they are simple to maintain and can adapt to any circumstance. Horse lovers of all skill levels can manage the animal without difficulty. 

One of the oldest horse breeds in the US is the Morgan, and in the 19th century, they were pretty helpful. 

9. Belgian Horse

Belgian Horse
by Hans-Dieter Niepötter is licensed under CC BY 2.5

The draft horse breed, known as the Belgian Horse or Belgian Heavy Horse, originated in the Brabant region of present-day Belgium. 

Additionally, it stands between 66 and 68 inches tall and is among the most challenging horse breeds. 

A mature breed has a relatively tiny and well-shaped body, weighing about 900 kg. Furthermore, the American Belgian is a tall horse with a chestnut coat and a flaxen mane. 

Despite being smaller than Europe’s, North America has a comparable build. They are raised for meat and used to pull large objects in some places. 

The junctional epidermolysis bullosa, an inherited genetic condition, is very common in this breed.

In addition, the disease causes neonates to lose significant amounts of skin, which leads to euthanasia. 

10. Selle Français

Selle Français
by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The stud books of several different breeds were joined in 1958 to produce this French breed, which was intended to be a “united” performance horse. 

Additionally, this occurred at a time when machines gradually replaced the traditional work performed by horses, and more and more horses were being retained only for athletic purposes. 

They are related to breeds like the Thoroughbred and the American Quarter Horse, yet neither can compare to them in terms of pure speed. 

Furthermore, they are frequently employed for competitions like show jumping and dressage because they excel in sports where more excellent skill is necessary. 

Many of these horses, mainly by French riders, have won Olympic gold in various competitions. 

11. Ponies

by steve_lodefink is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Next on our list of different types of horses is the Ponies. A pony is a stunning horse that is well-known for its size. 

They are an excellent option for new horse riders because they are less scary.

They have a variety of breeds and were initially domesticated as landraces to resist severe environments. 

Additionally, they have more enormous barrels, shorter legs, shorter heads, and thicker necks than other horse breeds. 

Some pony breeds, like the Hackney, are exclusively used for driving, whereas the Connemara and Australian ponies are used solely for riding. Welsh ponies can be driven and ridden. 

Ponies are bright and friendly but can also be sly or stubborn. Children who want to learn how to ride a horse should use them.

Because larger ponies are pretty strong despite their size, adults can also hang them. 

Because of its tiny stature, a pony may be mistaken for a juvenile horse by people unfamiliar with horses. 

12. Standardbred

by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Next on our list of different types of horse breeds is standardbred. The standardbred is most well-known for being a successful harness racing horse.

Additionally, this is because it trots among the very fastest horses, if not the fastest. Up to 30 mph have been recorded for Standardbreds trotting. 

They are well-known as pacy trotters but well-liked in many other areas because of characteristics like friendliness, versatility, and willingness to learn. 

Since they are straightforward horses to ride, they are especially suited for novices. 

13. Holsteiner

by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The Holsteiner may be the oldest warmblood breed, having its roots in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein. 

Additionally, this has been around since the 13th century. They were created more as coach horses than riding horses. 

However, they are now well-known for their skills in jumping competitions, where they have had remarkable success. 

Additionally, this breed doesn’t have a single temperament that can be easily distinguished; instead, there are horses of this breed with a diversity of characteristics.

Furthermore, this may also depend on the particular Holstein breed line. 

Although these horses are not the most numerous in terms of sheer numbers, their aptitude for jumping makes them quite desired. 

14. Miniature Horse

Miniature Horse
by newagecrap is licensed under CC BY 2.0

On our list, the miniature Horse stands out because it encompasses a variety of breeds. Instead, it is a category of horses that includes several different species. 

However, as the name implies, miniature horses are distinguished by their small stature, typically standing no taller than 34-38in (86-97cm) at the withers. 

Since ponies are also typically distinguished by their shorter stature, there is some confusion regarding the distinction between miniature horses and ponies. 

Additionally, Ponies, on the other hand, typically have bigger bodies, shorter legs concerning their height, and a stockier build. 

On the other hand, miniature horses are identical to full-sized horses in every way except for their size. 

15. Dutch Warmblood

Dutch Warmblood
by dvanzuijlekom is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

A breed of warm-blooded Horse known as a “Dutch Warmblood” was created in the Netherlands through a breeding effort that began in the 1960s. 

This one is one of the most famous horse breeds developed post-World War II Europe. Most Dutch Warmbloods are gray, chestnut, bay, brown, or black with white markings. 

In addition, the rectangular structure of the Dutch Warmblood is constructed uphill. Depending on the pedigree, this breed has a different exact outline. 

Although they are appropriate for dressage and show jumping, the breed is favored in the North American hunter ring. 

16. Mustangs

Photo by Parker_West on Pixabay

Next on our list of different types of horse breeds is the Mustangs. The Mustang is one of the few horses that captures the essence of the ancient Wild West and the pioneer. 

Although these horses are frequently seen as wild, technically speaking, they are considered “feral” because they are descended from domesticated horses, not the wild horses that the Spanish introduced to the Americas. 

Additionally, most tame Mustangs are beautiful creatures, making them a popular alternative. However, they can be adopted. 

In addition to the blood of the original Spanish horses, Mustangs also have some Thoroughbred and American Quarter blood, though there is a lot of diversity from Horse to Horse and herd to herd because they breed in the wild. 

Moreover, Mustangs are often fast and strong, and most are also amiable and quiet.  

17. Hanoverian

by gerriet is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Hanoverians make excellent mounts for riding sports like show jumping, eventing, and dressage because they are powerful, elegant, and graceful. 

Several different Olympic events have seen them ridden to gold medal finishes. King George II of England established a stud in Lower Saxony, Germany, in 1735, marking the breed’s beginning

In the end, he produced an animal that established itself as one of the most sought-after coach horse breeds in Europe by mating the local mares with some of the most outstanding stallions from other breeds. 

Additionally, Hanoverians continued to advance and were occasionally appreciated as farm animals and horses for the military. 

18. Irish Draught

Irish Draught
by Wasechun tashunka is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Unsurprisingly, the Irish Draught was born there and mainly used to carry large loads on fields.

Additionally, the species was already well established when the Irish Hobby was crossed with Iberian breeds, Clydesdales, and Thoroughbreds in the 18th century. 

The Irish Draught was bred to be helpful for various tasks, both in harness and while being ridden. 

Furthermore, these horses are still regarded as “excellent do-ers” since they had to be cost-effective to maintain due to the farming lifestyle of a few hundred years ago. 

19. Gypsy Vanner Horse

Gypsy Vanner Horse
by quinet is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Rounding off our list of different types of horse breeds is the Gypsy Vanner Horse.

One of the Irish horse breeds is the Gypsy Vanner, sometimes called the Gypsy Cob. It is a tiny, strongly built colt that frequently has skewbald or piebald hair. 

It is primarily connected to Irish and Romani travelers. Splash solid and tobiano are two of the many colors available for the Gypsy Vanner. 

Their long, free-flowing mane and tail, as well as the profusion of feathers behind their knees, serve as identifying characteristics. 

They have a friendly disposition and stand between 14 and 15 hands tall.

Furthermore, these dogs were initially bred to pull the Gypsy Wagon, but they are used in many sports today. 

Additionally, you’ll see them being ridden in the dressage ring and hauling carriages. They make excellent family horses in general.

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