Looking for a gentle-natured horse that won’t let you down? Carrol Baker discovers why the Pinto is such a popular choice.
If you’re crazy about horses, there are many different breeds that can make a delightful companion animal and pet. One of the most loved is the Pinto.
Did you know Australia has no indigenous horses? While our country can lay claim to being the original home of the cute and cuddly koala and the shy, elusive platypus, the first horses were imported from overseas. Among those was the Pinto, a breed that originated in the Americas in the wild, wild west.
Breeder Suzanne Knight from Windsong Stud says the gentle-natured Pinto is a popular horse for many reasons. “The breed generally has a quiet and sensible temperament and a loving nature,” she says. “They’re suitable for children and adults, too, as they are available right through from little miniatures to thoroughbred size.”
The Pinto is a very versatile breed. It is suitable for riding and if you want to compete in equine disciplines, it can compete in almost any form, including show jumping and eventing, show ring competition, and gymkhana and sporting, to name a few.
Pinto or Paint horse?
The Pinto is sometimes confused with a similar horse, the Paint horse. “Paint horses are larger than Pintos although they share the same colour markings,” explains Suzanne. There are two main colour patterns: Tobiano and Overo. The Tobiano has large areas of white on its body and legs, and splashes of colour. The Overo is almost a reverse of that, a solid colour with generous splashes of white. All Pintos fall within these patterns, variations and colours.
The original article was published in PETS issue 60. Click here to subscribe to our magazine.