- A -
Albino: contrary to popular beliefe, albinos DO indeed
exist. They are born pure white with very light blue or
uncolored eyes. The blue is a tint from the blood. Albinos
are quite rare, but are found in all types of mammals,
including humans, and eyes only appear red in rodents and
related animals, such as rabbits and beavers. Albinos are
the only true white horses.
Appaloosa: an american breed charactorized by having one or
more appaloosa charactoristics, such as spots on the coat,
mottling, strpied hooves, eye whites, etc. Also any type of
horse with these charactoristics of any breed as a color.
Arabian: a unique horse of arabic breeding with an unusually
arched nack, short back, arched tail, dished face, and fewer
bones than that of any other horse breed.
Arena: where a horse is worked. It is much like a paddock
only quite a bit larger and instead of turining the horses
loose, this is where riders practice their equitation.
- B -
Bay: a horse of chestnut coat with black points. Horses of
this color may be split into catagories: blood bay, golden
bay, dun (if applies), etc.
Black: a color of horse, the darkest a horse can get. A
horse may have black points (mane, tail, and legs) or be a
black roan or a piebald pinto, as well as a solid black.
Black horses are very rare, and have NO brown shadings on
the body whatsoever. Usually, horses classified as blacks
are actually dark bay.
Buckskin: a palomino-colored horse (tan or gold) with black
- C -
Canter: a three-beat gair of the horse where legs on
opposite sides and leading strike the ground at the same
time. Faster than the trot and slower than the gallop.
Chestnut: a horse of any "brown or red" color with the same
color or darker mane and tail (but not black). Dark ones are
called Liver Chestnuts or Seal chestnuts, while light ones
can be Golden Chestnuts, Red Chestnuts, sorrels, and more.
Colt: a young, uncasterated male horse between the ages of
birth and 4 years.
Corral: a place to keep large numbers or low numbers of
stock, like a big arena outdoors but usually not used for
riding in, only holding stock.
Creamello: a very light palomino color.
- D -
Dappled Grey: an early stage of fleabitten, where the body
appears grey with white speckles throughout it.
Dun: a horse of any color with charactoristics such as a
dorsal stripe, transversal stripe, and striped legs.
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- E -
Equestrian: a horseback rider.
Equine: Any type of equidite; horses, ponies, donkies,
Equitation: how an equestrian performs.
ER: Equine Rescue, usually some sort of organization to help
equines, sometimes an individual or doing.
- F -
Feral: These horses are not wild as they did not naturally
live in the area that they do now, so are not wild, but are
no longer tame, either. This includes such horses as
Mustangs and Brumbies.
Fleabitten: A horse is fleabiif his or her coat has roaned
out from either a dappled grey, black, chestnut, bay, or
blue roan and all that is left is tiny speckles across the
fur. The horse will eventually turn completely white. This
is an advanced stage of roaning, but is NOT considered roan.
Types of fleabitten are fleabitten grey and fleabitten red
Filly: a young female horse who has not yet had a foal
between the ages of birth and 4 years.
Foal: a young horse of either sex between the ages of birth
Fox trot: where a horse trots with his forelegs and walks
with his back, a very smooth gait that is rare in most
breeds aside from the Rocky Mountain Pony and the MO Fox
Trotter. Also known as a single foot.
Frog: The soft part on the bottom of a horse's foot, similar
to the sole of a shoe.
Furlong: 1/8th of a mile. This is used as a distance on a
- G -
Gelding: a casterated male horse.
Grey: Almost all white appearing horses are grey. A horse is
grey if his or her coat is black. A horse may turn grey from
any color. Most "white" horses are actually grey.
Gymkhana: Western gaming, such as barrel racing or pole
- H -
Hinny: A cross between a donkey Jenny and a stallion.
Horse: a stallion, or uncasterated adult male horse over 4
years of age.
- I -
Irons: English sturrups.
- J -
Jack: A male donkey.
Jenny: A female donkey.
Jockey: The rider of a racehorse.
John: A male mule.
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- K -
- L -
Length: Approx. 8-9 feet, or the length of a stretched out
horse at a gallop.
- M -
Mare: an adult female horse over the ages of 4 years or
after she has had her first foal.
Medicine Hat: a spot of color on the ears of a pinto horse.
This does not extend down the face or neck at all. A horse
with a spot of color on an otherwise white head that goes
down to the throatlatch but doesn't extend down the face or
extend beyond the top of the neck is called a War Bonnet.
Molly: A female mule.
Mule: A cross between a female horse (mare) and a male
Mustang: any breed of feral American horse. Mustang is often
refurred to as a breed.
- N -
- O -
Overo: a pinto of any color with no white crossing his or
- P -
Pace: a gait found in many horses that don't trot, where
legs on the same side of the body move together.
Paddock: a turnout place for horses outside, like a tiny
corral but only used for one or twohorses at a time.
Palomino: a horse the color of a "new gold coin" with white
points. White legs are not necissary, but usually wanted.
Palominos are a color, not a breed. Palominos can only be
born by breeding two palominos, and even then, only 1/2 of
the foals will turn out palominos. Many breeds do not allow
palominos to be registered, such as arabians and
thoroughbreds, and are therefore classified as chestnuts.
Perlino: a white-colored horse with cream or palomino
Piebald: a pinto of grey and white or black and white
Pintabian: a breed of horse over 99% arabian with tobiano
Pinto: a horse with large splashes of any color and white.
Hairs are not combined as with roans, but instead keep
seperate with their own colors.
Points: a horse's legs, mane, and tail.
- Q -
Quarter Horse: the world's most popular and versital breed.
This breed was originally bred as a range horse, then for
running races at short distances, such as a quarter of a
Quarter Pole: the colored pole one quarter of the way from
the finish line for a race. This is where Quarter Horses
start their races.
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- R -
Race: a compotition for horses, where the winning horse is
the fastest for that race and crosses the finish line first.
Race Horse: any type of racing breed, usually thoroughbreds,
appaloosas, quarter horses, standardbreds, or arabians.
Rack: The fastest show gait of a five-gaited horse, a
high-stepping pace-type motion.
Roan: a horse may be blue roan, black roan, or red roan. A
roan usually has darker colored points and face or black
points with a mixture of hairs of, for example, red and
white (red roan).
- S -
Sabino: a splashy pinto pattern, with a white belly. Sabinos
are also overos.
Saddle: a piece of riding equipment put over the horses'
back as a type of brace and seat for the rider.
Singlefoot: a fox trot.
Skewbald: a pinto horse of any color but grey and white or
black and white.
Sorrel: a horse of a chestnut coat color with a flaxen or
white mane and tail. This can be split into catagories, such
as copper-sorrel, chocolate sorrel, palomino, etc.
Stall: an indoor box where a horse is kept at times during
Stallion: an uncasterated adult male horse over 4 years of
Stud: a stallion used for breeding.
Sturrups: a place to keep your feet when riding for support
in the western saddle.
Surcingle: a girth used for race horses that goes all the
way over the saddle. May also be used bareback for training
- T -
Thoroughbred: any descendant of three specific arabain
stallions of the 1600's. They are usually used for
middle-distance races, shorter than indurance but longer
than 1/2 of a mile. Also, these horses must trace their
parentiage back to at least one of three thoroughbred
stallions: Herod, Matchem, or Eclipse.
Tobiano: a pinto of any color with some white crossing its
back and a solid colored head (markings are permittable).
Tovero: a pinto of any color with overo-stle markings, and
perhaps a bit of white crossing either the loins over the
back and/or the lower neck. Otherwise usually a solid color
with a white face and markings. Mostly colored.
- U -
- V -
- W -
War Bonnet: A horse with a spot of color on an otherwise
white head that goes down to the throatlatch but doesn't
extend down the face or extend beyond the top of the neck is
called a War Bonnet.
Weanling: a young horse of either sex that no longer needs
it's mother's milk, and lives on grasses.
Warmblood: almost any sport horse type is a warmblood. A
warmblood is a horse used for riding but not racing. A
warmblood can also be a European crossbred.
White: an albino horse.
- X -
- Y -
Yearling: a horse of either sex that is one year old.
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- Z -
MORE EQUINE DEFINITIONS
Abortion The premature expulsion of the fetus or foal
generally attributed to one of three causes:
(1) Improper rations; (2) Injuries; (3) Bacillus abortus.
Aged Horse A horse known to be nine years old or older.
Anemia Condition of the body resulting from a lack of red
corpuscles in the blood.
Bad Keeper A horse who does not eat well or does not digest
what he does eat.
Bedding Straw, sawdust, wood shavings, sand, peat moss,
leaves or sugar cane stalks are considered to be good
bedding for horses.
Blemish An abnormality that does not seriously affect the
serviceability of a horse.
Body brush A soft brush used to make a horse shine.
Box stall A stall in the shape of a large box (12 x 14 or
Breeches Riding pants
Breed Registry A group of breeders banded together for the
purposes of recording the lineage of their animals,
protecting the purity of the breed, encouraging further
improvement of the breed, and promoting the interest of the
"Buy a lot" An expression used in racing circles for falling
Castration Removal of the testicles of a male to make him
Colostrum The milk secreted by the dam for the first few
days following birth of a foal.
Colt A young stallion.
Concentrates Feeds that are low in fiber and high in total
digestible nutrients. Examples of this class of feeds are
the various grains and high grade by products.
Conception The fertilization of the egg and beginning of
growth of the embryo inside the mare's body.
Conformation Symmetrical disposition of the parts of a horse
(how the horse is proportionally put together).
Cribbing A vice in which the horse bites or places its upper
incisor teeth on some solid object, pulls down, arches his
neck, and swallows gulps of air which go into the stomach,
not the lungs.
Dam A name for a mare which has a foal.
Dismounting Getting off of a riding horse. This should
always be done on the "near" or left side of the horse.
Drag hunt A form of hunting in which an artificial scent is
Drench A method of giving liquid medicine to a horse by
elevating his head and pouring it down his throat from a
Equitation Art of riding horses gracefully.
Farrier A blacksmith or one who shoes horses.
Feathers Long hair found on a horse such as on the fetlocks.
Feeds Standard feeds for a horse are hay, grass, oats,
barley, corn, sweet feed and bran.
Filly Female horse under three years of age.
Firing A method of strengthening tendons by piercing the
skin of the foreleg between the knee and pastern with a red
hot iron. This is practiced largely with race horses which
have broken down in the tendons.
Fixed or bridged reins Reins crossed and rested on top of
horse's withers so that the horse pulls against himself.
Foal Colt or filly under one year.
Gaits The ways a horse moves. The three natural gaits
(paces) of a horse are walk, trot and canter. Others are
foxtrot, gallop, pace, rack, running walk, slow pace,
stepping pace and the traverse or sidestep.
Gelding A male horse which has been castrated before he is
two years old.
Gestation The act or period of carrying the young during the
pregnancy period; 11 to 11 1/2 months or 330 to 340 days for
Gymkhana An all-games show or event (egg-in-spoon race,
musical chairs, etc.) for horses and their riders.
Hand Unit of measuring horse's height (to highest part of
1 hand = 4 in. = 10 cm. Subdivided into inches.
(For example, 16.2 hands = 16 hands and 2 inches.)
Head-shy Horse is afraid of having the head touched or of
quick movements about the head.
Heat period The period in which the mare can be bred. Heat
periods usually recur at about 21-day intervals. This
interval may be as short as 10 days or long as 37. The
duration of the heat period averages 4 to 6 days, but it may
range from 1 to 37 days.
Hogging or roaching Clipping the mane close to the neck.
Light horses Animals produced to meet the specific purposes
of riding, racing, stock horses, etc.
Mare A female of the horse species.
Measuring The four common measurements of a horse are bone,
girth, height, and weight.
Mounting Getting onto a horse properly. Always mount from
the "near" or left side.
Near-side The left side of a horse.
Off or far side The right side of a horse.
Pace see Gait (above).
Parasite An organism living on or in the horse such as lice
(external) and worms (internal).
Parturition Act of giving birth.
Pedigree A form showing the line of ancestors and their
performance for an individual horse.
Poling or rapping A cruel practice of striking the underpart
of a horse as he goes over a jump with any number of devices
from a bamboo pole to a heavy bar wrapped with barbed wire,
or with an electrified wire. It is a short cut taken by
inefficient trainers to make a horse jump higher than the
object over which he is being schooled, mainly to prevent
ticks or knocking off of the bar.
Pony A horse of a small breed, 14.2 hands and under.
Puberty The state of being capable of begetting or bearing
offspring (point of sexual maturity). Mares generally reach
the age of puberty when 15 to 24 months of age.
"Pulling leather" Hanging onto the saddle to keep your
Purebred An animal whose blood lines are pure.
Red ribbon on tail A sign that a horse kicks.
Registration Entering horse into the registry of the breed
association if he meets qualifications laid down by the
Roughage Feeds that are high in fiber and therefore low in
digestible nutrients. Such feeds as hay, corn fodder, and
straw belong to this class.
Saddle A leather covered seat for the rider on horseback.
The English saddle and the Western saddle are the common
Shank A long strap or rape used for leading the horse.
Sire The male parent of a horse.
Stallion A male horse of breeding age.
Stallion foal A male foal (colt).
Sterility or barrenness Not fertile - horses that are
incapable of producing young are sterile.
Stock A hunting necktie which can be used as a bandage for
horse or rider should an emergency arise.
Straight or tie stall An area between two partitions in
which the horse is generally tied to his manger. tie
stall:(5 or 6 ft. x 9 ft.)
Tack The saddle, bridle, girth, martingale, etc.
Types of horses A classification of the different kinds of
horses. One type is the light horse which is sub-divided
into driving horses, racing horses, and riding horses. Under
driving horses we find fine harness, heavy harness, ponies,
and roadsters; under racing horses are harness-race,
quarter-race, and running-race; and under riding horses are
five-gaiter, hunters, jumpers, plantation walking horses,
polo mounts, ponies, stock horses, and three gaited horses.
The second type is work horses which is sub-divided into
draft horses, farm chunks, southerners, and wagon horses.
Umbilical cord A tube-like structure connecting the mare's
body with the growing fetus.
Vices Objectionable traits found in a horse but not serious
enough to be classified as unsoundnesses. The common ones
are weaving, biting, wind-sucking, cribbing kicking, blanket
tearing, halter pulling and crowding.
Weanling A weaned foal before he becomes a yearling.
Western saddle A common type of saddle. The parts of this
saddle are horn, fork, seat, cantle, saddle:skirt, back
housing or back jockey, lace strings, Dee ring, leather
flank girth, fender or sudadero, stirrup, stirrup leather,
front tie strap or cinch strap, front jockey and seat jockey
(one piece), wool lining, rope strap and pommel.
Wind The breathing ability of a horse.
Withers Area of a horse at the base of the neck, above the
shoulders, where the neck joins the body.
Yearling A foal born in the spring becomes on the following
January 1 a yearling.
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