Encyclopedia Article


Spanish for spotted or painted with color, the pinto is a horse with a spotted coat of different colors. Pintos are most often associated with the Plains Indians of North America, because after the Spanish introduced horses to North America, they were adopted by indigenous groups who quickly mastered horsemanship and then the plains themselves. There are two types of pintos, overo and tobiano. Overo is a coloring where the white of the coat spreads from the underbelly to meet a darker color near the top of the horse. The tobiano coloring occurs when the white spreads from the top and to create clearly-formed spots.

Photo Credit: 

"An overo pinto, from," by Maclom Morley, is licensed under CC BY-SA.