American Quarter Horse

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

American Quarter Horse photo
American Quarter Horse, Bay
Photograph by Rumo. Some rights reserved.


The American Quarter Horse has excellent sprinting capabilities over short distances. These horses got the name “quarter horse” because they could outrun the horses of any other breed in any race by at least quarter of a mile or lesser. With a population of around 4 million or more, the American Quarter Horse is the largest breed in the world and is also the most popular among racing circles.

The reason for their popularity is their mild temperament which makes the great animals for people to train with. Thanks to the breeding abilities of the American Quarter Horses, owners of many stud farms have earned both name and fame in addition to making large amounts of money.

The America Quarter Horses have the most power and speed as compared to any other breed and also are creatures that are eager to please the owners. The height of the American Quarter Horses can be anywhere between 14-16 hands. The hindquarters of this horse are well muscled and strong which gives the ability to sprint at high speeds. The head of this horse is short, but wide and has a small muzzle. The knees of this horse are flat and the legs have great strength. These horses have a wide chest which is powerful too.

14 - 16 hands

The color of the American Quarter Horse can be brown, black, chestnut, buckskin, bay, palomino or grey.

Suitable for
The American Quarter Horse has varied uses. This horse is used extensively in the racing fields. It is also used a work horse, cutting horse and show horse. It is also used in barrel racing, equestrian events, calf roping, reining and various western riding events.

The European colonists who settled along the eastern coast of America in the 1600s used to cross breed their English thoroughbreds with native American horses like the Chickasaw horse. This gave birth to a new breed of horses that were short but sturdy, quick and agile. The colonists put these horses to work during the weekdays and during weekends these horses were used for racing purposes.

When the westward expansion began, people began to move towards the west coast with their horses. On the way, they encountered many native American horses and cross bred their horses with the native horses. The horses that were born as a result of this cross breeding carried an inborn ability to work with cattle which thus made them popular ranch animals.

Many ranches in Texas played an important role in the development of the modern American Quarter Horse. These horses could work with cattle amazingly well and their skills and abilities laid foundation to the rodeo contest. Till date, these horses dominate in this contest and emerge out as unparalleled winners.