Top 10 Interesting Horse Facts

Horses and humans have lived alongside one another for thousands of years – so it is easy to presume that we know everything there is to know about our equine companions. Here is a fun list of our favourite little known horsey facts. Are there any others you could add to the list?

  1. Arabian horses have one fewer vertebrae, rib and tail bone than other breeds of horse.
  2. Horses have the largest eyes of any land mammal.
  3. There were no horses in Australia until European settlers introduced them in 1788.
  4. Horses are members of the equus family. This term originated from the Greek word for “quickness”.
  5. “Old Billy” was the oldest recorded horse. He was an English barge horse who died in 1822 and lived for 62 years.
  6. A mature horse’s brain typically weighs 0.6kg, half that of the average human.
  7. Scottish engineer James Watt coined the term “horse power”. He based his definition on the power of draft horses to determine the capabilities of a motor engine. One horse power equals 746 watts.
  8. Alfalfa was the first food cultivated by farmers specifically for horses. This was by the Parthians in around 100BC.
  9. The furlong measurement in horse racing originated in England from “furrow long”, the length of a standard farmer’s field. One furlong equals approximately 1/8 of a mile.
  10. All thoroughbred horses share a common birthday of January 1st, regardless of when in the year the horse was actually born. This means that if your racehorse was born on Christmas day, he will turn one on Tuesday.

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