Draft Trotter Horse

Draft Trotter Horse: A Versatile and Hardworking Breed

The Draft Trotter Horse, also known as the American Trotter or the American Draft Horse, is a sturdy and powerful breed that originated in the United States during the 1800s. Developed as a cross between the lighter and faster Standardbred and the heavier and calmer draft breeds, the Draft Trotter Horse was bred to be a versatile workhorse that excels in both agriculture and transportation.

Draft Trotter Horse History

The history of the Draft Trotter Horse can be traced back to the mid-1800s, when American farmers were seeking a horse that could handle the rigors of farm work while also being able to travel long distances at a fast pace. To achieve this goal, breeders began crossing Standardbred racehorses with draft breeds such as the Percheron, Belgian, and Clydesdale.

The resulting breed, known as the American Trotter or the American Road Horse, quickly gained popularity as a versatile and hardworking horse that could pull heavy loads, plow fields, and transport goods and people over long distances. Eventually, breeders began to focus more on trotting speed and racing performance, and the breed evolved into the Standardbred that is known today.

However, a small group of breeders continued to work on preserving the original type of American Trotter, which they renamed the Draft Trotter Horse in the 1960s. Today, the breed is still relatively rare and is mainly used for driving, farming, and pleasure riding.

Draft Trotter Horse Temperament

The Draft Trotter Horse is known for its calm and docile temperament, which makes it well-suited for work in agriculture and transportation. They are intelligent, easy to train, and enjoy working with humans. While they can be large and powerful, they are typically gentle and trustworthy, making them a good choice for novice riders and handlers.

Draft Trotter Horse Height

The Draft Trotter Horse is a tall and heavy breed, with an average height of 16 to 17 hands (64-68 inches) at the shoulder. However, there is some variation in height depending on the breed of draft horse that was used in the original cross. Some Draft Trotters may be shorter or taller than the average, but all are built for strength and endurance.

Draft Trotter Horse Characteristics

The Draft Trotter Horse is a muscular and well-built horse, with a broad chest, strong legs, and a powerful hindquarters. They have a short, thick neck and a deep chest, which gives them the ability to pull heavy loads with ease. Their coat is usually thick and dense, with a variety of colors and patterns depending on the breed of draft horse that was used in the cross.

Draft Trotter Horse Lifespan

Like most horses, the Draft Trotter Horse has a lifespan of around 25 to 30 years if they are well-cared for and healthy. Proper care involves providing them with a nutritious diet, regular exercise, and routine medical check-ups to prevent and treat any health problems that may arise.

Draft Trotter Horse Colors

The Draft Trotter Horse can come in a variety of colors, including black, brown, gray, chestnut, bay, and palomino. They may also have white markings on their face and legs, as well as stripes on their shoulders and hips. Some breeds of draft horses may have distinctive feathering on their lower legs, which can be passed down to their offspring.

Draft Trotter Horse Health

The Draft Trotter Horse is generally a hardy and healthy breed, but like all horses, they are prone to certain health problems. Some of the most common issues that affect the breed include joint problems, obesity, lameness, and respiratory infections. Regular veterinary care is essential for maintaining the health and well-being of the Draft Trotter Horse, and proper management practices such as regular exercise and a balanced diet can help prevent many health issues from arising.


The Draft Trotter Horse is a versatile and hardworking breed that has a rich history in American agriculture and transportation. Their calm temperament, muscular build, and excellent endurance make them ideal for a variety of tasks, from plowing fields to pulling carriages. While they may not be as well-known as other draft horse breeds such as the Clydesdale or Belgian, the Draft Trotter Horse has a unique history and set of characteristics that make it a fascinating and valuable breed to own and work with.