Types Of Horses

Discover the Types of Horses. We often see horses cantering about; horses pulling wedding carts, horses in the races, horses in polo and so on. To us, they all seem pretty much the same, but did you know that there are more than 200 different breeds of horses? We cannot recognize them because in all fairness, very few of us are actually acquainted with their types. Horses can be classified according to their blood, breed, type, functions and shape. Some are easily distinguishable by their physical attributes, and although stating all the types of horses here is an impossible job, we will discuss horses as classified according to three major types

Light Horses

These types of horses are usually for light, unimposing jobs such as pulling the carts, riding etc. Besides being sprightly, nimble and light-footed, light horses bear a long, supple body which renders them ideal for jobs that are not physically arduous. Furthermore, they are usually the saddle or hunter type or much rather referred to as ‘hot-blooded’ Light horses or ‘warm-blooded’ Light horses. Hot blooded are the types of horses that are race horses and their ancestry is traced back to the Thoroughbred while the warm blooded are usually ‘show’ horses that are seen doing different antics in circuses or competing in galas. Although more aggressive and willful, once these horses are trained, they prove to be swift, serviceable companions.

Different breeds of this type include:

1. Stock type breed (for ranch work)

2. Hunter Type breed (for fox hunting, shows, competitive driving, dressage)

3. Saddle Type breed (for riding)

Popular types of light horses include:

1. Thoroughbred which are the types of horses chosen for races

2. Arabian horses, the types of horses popular for their strength, loyalty and resilience

3. Quarter horses which are popular because of their strength

4. Appaloosa, horses with light spotting and renowned for their intelligence

Heavy Horses

Predictable from the name, these types of horses are ideal for heavy, laborious jobs usually on farms, ranches and plantations. They have powerful bodies and a patient, docile temper that makes them perfect for jobs such as plowing etc. Draft horses are a popular breed of these types of horses. Besides being very muscular, they are heavily built, with erect body structure which when coupled with their gentleness, makes them the best horses for jobs that require pulling. Another popular breed of heavy horses is the Clydesdale.


Ponies are the most easily distinguishable types of horses, because of their small built. We are most familiar with them because due to their short height, they are popularly used for riding especially for kids. Ponies have a friendly, serene demeanor and aside for occasional bursts of moodiness, they are the ideal horses to ride. Physically, ponies are short horses with thick, bushy tails and manes, small heads and broad necks. Moreover, they are extremely strong and so can perform admirably in challenging climates and conditions.

Popular breeds of pony are:

1. Shetland Ponies- These ponies are very strong as they originate from extremely tough conditions. They are ideal for riding and driving.

2. Welsh Ponies- These ponies are strong and sure-footed thus ideal for trekking, riding and driving.

3. Hackney Ponies- Hackney Ponies are used as show horses because of their proudly arched neck and a distinct gait.