Fun Horse Facts

Did You Know!

  • The world’s horse population is estimated at 75,000,000.
  • China not only has the most people in the world but also has the most Horses with 10,000,000
  • There are over 350 different breeds of horses and ponies.
  • The Horse belongs to the Equus Family. Equus comes from the ancient Greek word meaning “QUICKNESS”
  • One of the first horses was called a Hyracotherium. It lived about 50 million years ago and was as tall as a fox. It had toes! This horse changed over millions of years to become a modern horse.
  • The Pliohippus was the first ancestor of the horse to have hoofs?
  • The average lifespan for a horse is around 20 – 25 years, though they can live up to 30 years.
  • The “OLDEST” horse recorded to date is – “Old Billy”, an English Barge horse born in 1760 who lived to the age of 62 years old.
  • The”OLDEST” pony in history was 54 years old when he died in France.
  • The “OLDEST” horse ever to give birth was a 42-year-old Australian brood mare.
  • The “SMALLEST” breed is the Falebella of Argentina. The tallest of the breed stands about 74 cm (30 inches) at the shoulder.
  • The “SMALLEST” pony in history was a stallion named “Little Pumpkin.” He stood 14 inches and weighed only 20 lbs..!
  • The World’s Largest Horse ever recorded was a Shire gelding named Samson, bred by Thomas Cleaver of Toddington Mills, England. Foaled in 1846, this horse measured 21.2 1/2 hand high ( 7 ft. 2 inches) in 1850, and weighed 3,360 pounds.Samson is also recorded as the “HEAVIEST” horse weighing 1524 kg (3360 lbs.)
  • The world speed record for a horse is 43.2 mph, it was set by a four year old race horse named Big Racket.
  • World Record “LOG PULLING” was set in 1893. two Clydesdale Stallions hauled a sledge stacked with timber weighing 128 tonnes.
  • The longest tail measured was 22 ft. long was grown by an American Palomino named Chinook.
  • The longest horse mane was 18 ft. long and grown by a Californian mare named Maude.
  • In the wild horse world, the mare decides when and where the herd will go while the stallion follows.
  • The fastest Pony Express ride was 7 days, 17 hours and was carrying Lincoln’s inaugural address.
  • One horsepower (cars)= 746 watts; one metric horsepower= 736 watts.
  • HIPPO PHOBIA – Is the fear of horses.
  • EQUINOPHOBIA – Is the fear of horses.
  • If a statue in the park of a person on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle; if the horse has one front leg in the air, the person died as a result of wounds received in battle; if the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes.
  • The AQHA was founded in 1940.
  • The American Saddle Horse Breeders Association was formed in 1891.
  • Shetland ponies were first imported into the U.S. in 1885.

Basic Horse Facts:

  • Horses are measured in hands.A hand is four inches.
  • A horse is generally over 14.2 hh (hands high).
  • Anything under 14.2 hands high is a pony.
  • A horse is considered adult at age four.
  • A female horse over 4 years old is called a mare.
  • A male horse over 4 years old is called a stallion.
  • Horses can drink up to ten gallons of water a day.
  • The average horse’s HEAD WEIGHS 11.84 pounds
  • A horse’s “HEART WEIGHS” about 10 pounds.
  • The scientific name for the horse is equus caballus.
  • The Clydesdales became the Anheuser-Busch symbol on April 7, 1933.
  • Adult male horses generally have 40 teeth while the females only have 36.
  • Horses cannot breathe through their mouths.
  • Horses can see color.
  • Horses have two blind spots. One is directly behind them,the other is directly in front of them.
  • Horses expend more energy lying down than they do when they are standing up.
  • Horses can communicate how they are feeling by their facial expressions. They use their ears, nostrils, and eyes to show their moods. Beware of a horse that has flared nostrils and their ears back. That means it might attack.
  • You can tell how old a horse is by how many teeth it has. A horse gets all of its teeth by the time it is five years old. After that, they just grow longer.
  • With his long limbs and large heart and lungs, the horse is designed for galloping. Jumping is not a natural activity for horses and left to their own devices most will go around obstructions.
  • When spoken to, horses distinguish tones rather than particular words.

Horse Superstitions:

  • Gray horses are supposed to be lucky.
  • Horseshoes are supposed to be lucky and must be hung right side up. Horseshoes hung upside down, are said to have the luck running out.
  • The luckiest horseshoe of all is one off the hind leg of a large gray mare.

Strange Facts:

  • The horse is New Jersey’s state animal.
  • Human hair and fingernails are made from the same protein as horse hooves.
  • Horses like classical music.
  • Horses are required to wear hats in hot weather in Rosario, Argentina.
  • A British law states that an Englishman must not sell a horse to a Scotsman.
  • Hippocrates means horse master.
  • The only mode of transportation on the Greek island of Hydra are horses and ponies.
  • Approximately 90% of all Thoroughbreds can be traced back to Eclipse, a stallion brought to
  • England in the early 1700s. The horse got its name because it was foaled during a solar eclipse. He
  • died in 1789. Eclipse, a liver chestnut with a blaze and one hind stocking.
  • In New York City, it is illegal to open or close an umbrella in the presence of a horse.
  • Colorado bans fishing from horseback, as do Washington D.C. and Utah.
  • Tennessee prohibits riders from lassoing fish.

Educational Information Resources and Credits

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