American Paint Horse

American Paint Horse photo
American Paint Horse, horse show, Císa?ský ostrov, Prague, Czech Republic
Photograph by Karakal. Some rights reserved.

American Paint Horse photo
Photograph by José Reynaldo da Fonseca. Some rights reserved.


The American Paint Horse is the second largest breed to horses in the United States of America. The APHA which is the organization responsible for registering all the American Paint Horses is the second largest registry in the United States. For an American Paint Horse to be registered in their registry, either one of the parents of the horse has to belong to the American Quarter Horse Association or to Thoroughbreds. These horses are mostly bred in order to retain the spotted pattern. Thanks to the influence of the Quarter Horse and Thoroughbreds, the American Paint Horse is an intelligent animal that is also versatile in nature.

These horses are classified into two groups based on their coloring. On group is called the “overo” and the other is called the “tobiano”. The “overo” horses have all four legs (or at least one) that is dark in color. The white color does not extend towards the back. The white marks in the “overo” horses have irregular patterns and the tail of this horse is generally single colored.

The “tobiano” horses have regular spots in white that are either oval in shape or round. All the four legs of this horse are white in color below the knees. They also have white colored spots on the neck and in the chest region.

The average height of these horses is between 14.2 to 16 hands. These animals are a great combination of color and strength. They also have an amiable nature and are intelligent creatures. These horses have strong bones and a broad chest.

14.2 - 16 hands

Chestnut, brown, dun, grey, black, sorrel, palomino, grullo, roan, buckskin and bay

Suitable for
These horses are used for riding purposes. They also find their use in the field of agriculture and as show horses. They also are great horses for kids to ride on and find a place in trail riding and rodeo.

The American Paint Horse is also another breed of horses whose ancestors are the horses that belonged to the Spanish explorers who came to America. A Spanish explorer by the name Hernando Cortes brought 16 horses from Europe into the new world. One among the sixteen horses was a white and sorrel pinto. Historians claim that it was this horse that gave rise to a new breed that came to be known as the American Paint Horse.

The horses that were fathered by this horse gradually spread over the plains in the western part of USA. It was here that they were first noticed by the Native American Indians who immediately took a liking to them because they were fascinated by their colors and the strength. These horses were held in high esteem by the Native Americans who thought that this breed was blessed with great magical prowess.

This led to an increase in the number of the American Paint Horses in the USA. In the 1960s, the American Paint Horse Association was established in order to preserve this horse type and also the color.