How Long Do Horses Live?

old horse knight

How Long Do Horses Live?

Trying to answer this question is like trying to answer how long people or a loved one could ever enjoy living in this world, — a bit of too hard and emotional (in a sense). It’s really hard to know when will your horse reache it’s maximum age and then suddenly leave especially when an owner treats the horse as more than a bud and even as part of the family, treated as if a human or a child. But we know for a fact that no one stays here on Earth forever. And this includes the horse that you have been taking care of for quite long.

Every organism (both microscopic and macroscopic) have averaged or estimated lifespan that depends on different factors that might be available in the surrounding. With all the equine’s surveys and research conducted, it has been found that your horse lives shorter than most people do. Here are some of the things that you should know about a horse’s lifespan in general and how will humans can properly take care of horses to achieve longer lives these days.

So how long do these horses can actually live? There are many considered factors that must be noted in identifying how long do horses live. This can depend on varying factors such as genetics, breed, age, size, health, and proper care. The actual average lifespan of a horse regardless of the said factors that might be involved ranges between twenty-five to thirty years of existence. However, with the current state of veterinary health and science research that we have today, some horses can even live beyond the said age range. Most people believe that advanced medical and nutritional knowledge does not just benefit humans but also other animals—including horses.

The main characteristics of horses that affect the length of their existence are their breed, age and size and these three really do vary among all the species of horses. It is said that smaller breeds do live longer than the larger ones. Ponies tend to live longer in this case while the larger breeds like those of draft breeds are basically not considered as long-lived breeds. Regarding age, if a horse is simply just too old, the bodily systems of the horse might not fully function already especially if the horse does not get full-pledged basic maintenance. However, some old horses or those senior horses continue to explore the beauty of life along with their owners through proper care and an advanced healthcare knowledge that is being executed by the owners themselves. Some of these old-aged horses can still be very useful with all the support and care from humans, like us.

On the other hand, proper care is really a huge responsibility that should be taken and done by horse owners for this does not only include the kind of food that your horses eat but also includes the exercise, turnouts, companionship, and connection that these two parties possess. This supports and establishes the essence of care that must be given to horses so they will be given enough support to remain healthy and to live a longer life. In some way, horses might also feel that they are being taken care of and they are in the good hands and in this manner, horses might also feel the real essence of their purpose and existence even after retirement.

Meanwhile, health issues among different types of horses are common to them. This factor cannot be really avoided especially when it is caused by some major bacteria or virus that usually attacks horses such as Streptococcus equi for strangles, Equine Herpesvirus (EHV) and horse’s Viral Arteritis (EVA). This kind of diseases if not treated as soon as possible, might cause serious health problems to equines that lead to death and even euthanasia.

Above these issues, who does not want his horse to live longer, anyway? Actually, there are ways on how you can help your horse/s achieve a longer life here on Earth. You might find this stuff to check out and broaden your knowledge about the proper caring of horses. These are:

  1. An owner should feed their horses really well with complete vitamins and minerals just like on humans. These essential nutrients really help out in their metabolic processes as well as in their growth and development.
  2. Conducting parasite controls can also be considered as part of the proper care that a horse must be given. This should be done especially while the horse is still young because some bacterial and larval effects don’t show up not until a horse reaches the adult stage. In this way, disease and health problems caused by pests and other parasites can be avoided as early as possible.
  3. Since horses tend to eat frequently and they use their teeth a lot, owners should initiate taking care of his horses’ teeth because some dental problems can also cause serious health problems. It is known that improperly chewed foods among horses can result in some health complications such as malnutrition, colics, and severe weight loss. Aside from this, owners should also take care of their horses’ hooves. Fact
  4. Turnout times for horses should really be maximized by owners because this activity really does help in the body development and maintenance of horses. Also, this can also contribute to the improvement of horses’ health in different ways like keeping toned muscles and freely-moving joints.
  5. If humans should regularly visit a hospital for their health, well, horses should also be taken to veterinary hospitals for their long-term health. It is always good to know that your horse is free from all the diseases that he might acquire from the environment so let us not put their health at risk.

These are just some of the things that I know you must include in your checklist of proper horse care. Above all, we should always keep in mind that horses can also be treated as humans. Appreciate all the years that you have with all you good horses or horse or whatever number you’ve got. Be kind to all animals and show them that we, people, care about them.

Other Related Questions:

  1. What is the longest lifespan that a horse ever had?

A documented case has confirmed that a breed in England has been in 62 years of existence. He was named as the “Old Billy,” and he was born in the year 1760. There was also this old donkey named “Rosie” who reached 54 years of age and an old Arabian cross named “Orchid” who left the world after 50 years of enjoying horse life.

      2. How do we know the horse’s age?

Some looks at the horse’s teeth to identify their age, however, it has not yet been confirmed whether this could actually provide accuracy. The age of horse will always remain hidden in the dark age unless a certain horse has some sort of competition passport or any valid and legal papers verifying its identity.

3. What are the bodily signs of aging among horses?

  1. Dropping of joints in the legs caused by arthritis.
  2. Drooping lips and having hollowed depression around their eyes.
  3. Producing gray hairs around the eyes and muzzle area.
  4. Drier and thicker skin all over the horse’s body.
  5. More stained teeth.
  6. Reduced energy (this one is really evident among older horses).



I have owned over 50 horses and currently own a small horse farm with 8 horses. I have competed on and off for over 25 years while doing mostly trail riding and cow sorting these days. I write these articles to help anyone out there if you love this article pin it to your Pinterest or Share on other social media platform. Thanks for visiting.

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