The Resplendent Gypsy Vanner Horse

The Gypsy Vanner Horse is one of the most beautiful, and romantic, looking horses in the world. They have recently gained world wide attention as people are wondering “What is that miniature draft horse with pinto markings?”.

Throughout the UK, and Ireland some people still live a Gypsy lifestyle, even if only seasonally. These people are often called Romany Gypsies.   They have been known for breeding two types of horses, trotting horses for racing, and for meat, the the fancy horses for pulling their caravans, these horses are the Gypsy Vanners.

For many generations gypsies have selected and bred horses to pull their caravans (vans), thus the origin of the name “Vanners”. These horses were selected for strength, calm manners, and a smaller size. Since many of the gypsy caravans were colorful and ornate, so too where many of the horses, pinto markings were preferred, with feathering on the feet.

photo source


Most Gypsy Vanner horses are piebalds (black and white) but a few are skewbald (other color and white) or are solid colored, usually with some white markings. In height the Gypsy Vanner tends to be around 14.1 – 15.2 hh, but can be larger or smaller. They have the appearance of a small draft horse, with thick legs and feathering on the lower leg. They have thick, and full, manes and tails.


The Gypsy Vanner is a relatively level headed horse of great endurance. They are gentle horses, bred to work long days. They are well suited to dressage, hunter, and trail riding, in addition to their duties as draft animals.

photo source

Facts about Gypsy Vanners

Although these horses were bred for generations no formal registry was established until the 1990’s.

They are also called Gypsy Cob, Irish Cob, and Irish Tinker, although without registration papers one cannot be truly sure of breeding.

They are typically very tolerant of kids.

Today Gypsy Vanner horses can be seen in many countries throughout the world, including Canada, the United States and others.  As they are still somewhat of a new breed their prices tend to be high.

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User Comments
  1. Daisy Peasblossom

    On September 3, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    Beautiful! I love the feet, and the sturdy lines of the back and hips.

  2. FX777222999

    On September 3, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    Full breed horse and awesome.

  3. dazzlejazz

    On September 3, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Lovely article – the pictures are simply gorgeous!
    I used to ride a horse like this when little – her name was Bella; she was a fantastic jumper too. Very gentle animal.

  4. PR Mace

    On September 4, 2011 at 4:52 am

    What a beautiful creature.

  5. papaleng

    On September 4, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    The photo speaks for themselves, such a lovely horse to have as a companion pet.

  6. military memorabilia

    On September 4, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    What a beautiful horse. I have never seen this breed before….thanks for all the info and the amazing pictures.

  7. The Soul Explorer

    On September 4, 2011 at 11:24 pm

    Good to know about this! Thanks

  8. Larinna Chandler

    On October 14, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    Nice article. I always told myself when I get rich I will have a farm full of Gypsy Vanners and Fresians. I loved the history behind the Vanner horses too. Thanks for the good read!

  9. Βιομαζα

    On December 31, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    How nice!!

  10. drvaughandabbs

    On March 20, 2012 at 10:19 am

    Excellent information. This site definitely explains essential concepts to its readers. Thanks for continuing to write such wonderful articles.

  11. Luxury Independent Floors

    On June 12, 2012 at 2:27 am

    Well,it’s a really nice and interesting post..
    Thanks for sharing!

  12. bell tent hire

    On August 7, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Beautiful horse, we used to have a bay cob called Ted, real sturdy strong horse with a cheeky personality (used to creep up behind and give you a little nip if you werent paying attention to him) we barely ever used to put a rug on him, when all the other thoroughbreds were under layers and layers of fabric Ted would be rolling around in the mud, lovely horse he was and very missed.

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