A breed of horse that is well referenced from as early as 500 AD, incorporating colour, conformation and temperament, the American Paint Horse is both distinctive and highly sought around the world, as it has been throughout its decorated history.
Combining Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse bloodlines, the American Paint Horse is thought to have emerged in the United States following an introduction from Spain, where the horse had first established through inbreeding with native stock. Once in the American West, the Paint Horse quickly became the steed of choice for the American Indians who favoured the breed for its unique colouring, athleticism and steadfast disposition.
The American Paint Horse Association was established in 1962 and is the second largest association for equines in the world.
The breed is often seen with spotting or markings in a variety of colours, from chestnut, bay and palomino, to grey, blue roan and black. No two identically patterned horses will be found anywhere in the world.
The Paint Horse is typically muscular, well-balanced and of a medium to large height (14-16 hands), possessing a certain grace and versatility that makes it well suited to showing, dressage, jumping, trail riding and ranch (or farm) work.
Generally speaking, the Paint is a willing and intelligent equine that is easily trained and handled, making a great horse for the first-time rider.
The American Paint Horse has been known to reach speeds of 55-60 mph, which is the reason it is favoured by cowboys and cattle ranchers in the American West needing speed in their steed.