The Appaloosa Horse - Colorful and Historic

The ancestry of the colorful Appaloosa horse can be traced back to many places in early times, but it is in America that the unique spotted horse established itself as a true breed. Much of the American Appaloosa's development can be credited to the Nez Pierce Indians of the Northwest. These native Americans selectively bred for the fastest, strongest and most sure-footed animals.

These unique horses have so many exciting coat patterns that add to their colorful appearance! The seven common terms used to describe their coat patterns are:



blanket with spots


roan blanket

roan blanket with spots


Coat patterns are highly variable and there are many which may not fit into specific categories easily. The horse in the picture below is a Leopard pattern.

Appaloosa horses also have mottled skin, white sclera, and striped hooves. Today's App is indeed an all-around athlete. They can be found competing in all levels of Western and English disciplines such as Dressage, Three Day Eventing, Endurance, Reining, Cutting, Working Cow Horse, Barrel Racing and other western gaming activities. Their easy-going and willing temperament also makes them an ideal family horse and mount for pleasure trail riding. They can be small at 14 hands to well over 16 hands tall.


Back to Horse Breeds from Appaloosa Horses


ŠNickers & Neighs 2006