(Last Updated On: October 10, 2021)

Different horse breeds are developed for different purposes. Many horse breeds around the world have been created specifically for their local environment, and some for the international environment. Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse with its amazing traits is developed in line with the local settings.

Tennessee Walking Horse and other breeds originating in South America are closely associated with Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse. The calm and cool Kentucky mountain saddle horse has a naturally smooth gait that certainly delights riders with exceptional, as well as gentle rides.

Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse overview

Weight: 950 to 1,200 pounds

Height: 11 hands to 16 hands

Body type: Medium, muscle build; Arched neck; Flat Facial Profile; Deep chest

For the best: Rider and owner of all experience levels

Life expectancy: 25 to 40 years

History and Origins

A horse breed developed in the eastern United States in the 18th century – is a possible ancestor of the Kentucky mountain saddle horse.

The history of the horse breed is too old. The people of the Eastern Kentucky Mountains have been breeding Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse for more than 200 years for its uniquely comfortable running, toughness, and quiet appearance. With time the horse breed has been improved more and more, with the perfection of breeding as well as improvement of training.

They are all-in-one horses, working on the land or taking someone from a sick land to town, and even take part in the race. Therefore, the breed has a great social and economical value.

This breed has resemblance with Tennessee walking horses, Rocky Mountain horses, and other gated varieties.

The Kentucky mountain saddle horse was not recognized well until the 1980s. Gradually, people find the breed appropriate for smooth ride, versatility, and reliability.

The Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse Association was formed in 1989 as a breed registry.

Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse Size

The size of the Saddle Horse varies a lot on the basis of different species. On average, the horse stands between 11 hands (44 inches) and 16 hands (64 inches) in size. In fact, this moderate size is well enough to solve the purpose with ease.

As per the standard, the horse must have at least 11 hands in order to get registered. The registry divides horses into Class A (more than 14.2 hands) and Class B (between 11 and 14.1 hands).

The average weight of the breed is around 950 to 1,200 pounds.

Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse Use

There is a dissimilarity of the horse name with its performance. Although the breed is called the saddle horse, it performs well enough when it’s tied up with a cart or sleight.

They were bred as versatile horses for riding, running, and general farm work. This made the horse more viable and costly in terms of utility.

The breed is alert, reliable, confident, and calm in the rough mountain where it has been grown up. The breed carries this trait in the future.

Nowadays, they are still used for work and are very popular for pleasure and trail running.

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Colors and Marks

The pedigree of this breed comes in all Solid equine colors and beautiful patterns.

The color includes Palomino, Gray, Perilino, Carmelo, White, Chestnut, Rowan, Black, Champagne, Dunn, Grallo, Brown, and Buckskin.

A great coat-of-tail color combination makes this breed more particular. As a result, the contrasts are often pretty good and attract anyone.

The horse has irregular white markings on its mouths and legs. In order to qualify as a registered Kentucky mountain saddle horse, the markings must be made no more than 36 square inches of the horse coat.

A horse more white than this is considered a stained mountain horse instead.

This makes the horse much challenging to gain a standard.

Unique feature

The most distinctive feature of the Kentucky mountain saddle horse is its natural four-gait beat, called an embal or rack.

This is an unusually steady, gentle beat that can keep the horse comfortably above the track. It has the same foot pattern as the walk.

Always, at least one hoof is in contact with the ground. As a result, the horse sits almost motionless, and the horse carries them at a fast pace like most of the horse canisters.

Moreover, these horses are also known for their gentle, friendly behavior and grandeur. They are very easy to ride and cool enough to handle babies.

Diet and Nutrition

Not any special food is required for the horse. Just need to keep in mind their health and nutrition. Kentucky mountain saddle horses usually require some fruit and a standard horse feed of vegetarian quality grass, lentils, beans, straw, and grain.

They may require vitamin and mineral supplementation, especially if they are not able to graze freely.

And while these horses were developed in the hills where pastures were sometimes scarce, they might need a little less food than the average in order to maintain the proportionate weight. Overeating might be ended with obesity.

However, feeding largely depends on their size, level of activity as well as taking the load.

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General health and behavioral problems

Kentucky mountain saddle horses are strong, stiff, and confident. Thus, the breed is not prone to any specific health problems.

Horses are generally friendly, easy to train, and lack any gruesome offense and serious behavioral problems.


Standard horse grooming exercises should be sufficient for the breed. The owner should be caring and compassionate to the horse.

There should be no compromise about care concerns. These include brushing your horse daily in order to keep your horse free of dirt, debris. Massage oil evenly.

You should check and clean the horse’s straws every day, especially after the trail ride. In order to keep the horse’s mane and tail tidy, consider using a man’s knife and tail brush.


Friendly and gentle
Good for trail riding


There is no clear idea of ​​this breed

Behavior and Temperament

Silky smooth gait, even temperament, agility, and the steadiness of the Kentucky mountain saddle horse make this a great trail horse.

They are friendly horses that love people. So if you want a horse that is a loyal, loving companion and has time to spend with you, Kentucky mountain saddle horses can be a great choice.

Furthermore, riders with joint problems, especially on the back, have a pleasant experience of riding or jumping on a Kentucky mountain saddle horse.

Due to their sweet nature, these horses are very well suited for beginners, as well as for children. But don’t forget to take safety types of equipment while riding!

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