HORSE FUN FACTS



  • Horses have better memories than elephants.
  • Horses will mourn the passing of a companion.
  • The horse is an herbivore, which means it feeds mostly on plants.
  • The average horse's heart weighs approximately 9 or 10 pounds. The great New Zealand / Australian racehorse, Phar Lap, had a heart that weighed 14 pounds. The great American racehorse Secretariat had a heart estimated during his autopsy to weigh 21 pounds, though the heart was not weighed
  • Horses cannot burp the way like humans do. They do not even have the ability to breathe in by mouth or even vomit.
  • The word chivalry comes from cheval the French word for horse.
  • Chariot racing was the first Olympic sport in 680 B.C.
  • The Dubai World Cup is 6 million dollars, the richest horse race purse in the world.
  • Horses like sweet flavors and will usually reject anything sour or bitter.
  • The measurement 'hand' is 4 inches because that was considered to be the average width between a man’s knuckles.
  • A horse is usually not considered to be a "horse" until it is 5 years old. Before that, males are known as colts and females are known as fillies. However, it is still acceptable to call a colt or filly a horse.
  • A horse is usually considered to be 14.2 (14 hands, 2 inches) or taller when mature.
  • Anything under 14.2 when mature is usually considered to be a pony.
  • Horses drink at least 25 gallons of water a day (more in hotter climates).
  • Horses teeth never stop growing.
  • It takes 9-12 months to re-grow an entire horse hoof.
  • Horses have been found in cave paintings that date back to around 15000 B.C.
  • You can tell if a horse is cold by feeling behind their ears. If that area is cold, so is the horse.
  • One of Leonardo da Vinici’s favorite drawings subjects was horses.
  • Horses have 16 muscles in each ear, allowing them to rotate their ears 180 degrees.
  • According to Arabian folklore chestnut horses are the fastest and bravest of all colors.
  • Ponies live longer than horses and can live well into their 50’s. The average age of horse life span is around 28 -33 years.
  • The oldest horse that had lived was 62 and had died in 1822.
  • A horse’s knee joint is the equivalent to a human wrist, and their hock joint is equivalent to the human ankle.
  • The gestation period for a mare is 11 months, for a female donkey it is 12 months.
  • Horses with pink skin can get a sunburn.
  • A small indent in a horse’s skin (usually on the neck or shoulder) is called a prophet’s mark and is considered good luck.
  • Mongolian tribes were the first to domesticate the horse, about 5,000 years ago.
  • Horses thrive on routine, especially when it comes to food.
  • The best way to determine the age of a horse is by examining its teeth.
  • You can tell if a horse is dehydrated by pinching their skin, if it takes time for the skin to return from the pinch, they need water.
  • A horse’s stomach should always make gurgling noises, an absence of them can mean colic.
  • The largest horse museum in the world is the International Museum of the Horse in Kentucky.
  • Horses are social animals and will get lonely if kept alone.
  • Arabian horses have one fewer vertebrae and one less rib than other breeds.
  • When cantering, a horse takes a breath with every stride.
  • Horses sleep by standing up but they also lay down but only for short times. Most horses prefer standing up in sleeping because their weight adds pressure on the internal organs when they are lying down.
  • White horses are not born white. Horses have a darker color at birth, which gradually changes to white. They may start out as a chestnut, bay or even black, that is why most horses are not white but gray.
  • Most of the time, a horse has "monocular" vision. This means a different image is seen by each eye so that a horse is seeing two different pictures at the same time. A horse can also have "binocular" vision. Binocular vision is when both eyes work together to see one picture (humans have binocular vision). A horse only has binocular vision when it is looking down its nose.
  • A horse has a wide range of vision. A horse can see completely around its entire body except for small blind spots directly in front of its face, underneath its head, and directly behind itself. This is why it's very important not to walk up right behind a horse - you are in its blind spot and if you startle it you may get kicked.
  • On the underside of a horse's hoof is a triangular shaped area called the "frog." When pushed on the frog has a firm, rubbery feel that yields to pressure. Each time the frog comes into contact with the ground it acts as a shock absorber for a horse's leg, and also helps to pump blood back up the leg.
  • Stallions will fight over females but generally not over territory.