9 Animals Like Horses

Horses are majestic creatures that have been domesticated for thousands of years and play a significant role in human history. But did you know that there are other animals that share similarities with horses? From donkeys and mules to zebras and tapirs, there are a variety of creatures that resemble horses in appearance and behavior. This article explores nine animals that are like horses in various ways, detailing their physical characteristics and the ways in which they interact with humans. Whether you’re a horse lover or simply curious about the animal kingdom, this article is sure to captivate your interest.

9 Animals Like Horses

1. Donkey

Why Donkeys are like Horses

Donkeys have a long history of working harmoniously with humans, whether it be labor or as a form of transportation. They are closely related to horses, which explains their remarkably similar appearances. Donkeys are smaller than horses but have very similar body shapes. Both animals have a mane and tail, though the hair of a donkey’s mane is short and stiff rather than long and flowing.

2. Mule

Why Mules are like Horses

Mules are the result of breeding between a horse and a donkey, so it stands to reason they are very closely related to horses. Mules are smaller than horses but have a similar lean, muscular frame. Both mules and horses are herbivores and have a long history of working well with humans. Mules have four single-hooved feet and are capable of wearing horseshoes like their horse relatives. Fun fact: most mules are sterile and cannot reproduce, so the only way for a mule to exist is for a horse and a donkey to breed.

9 Animals Like Horses

3. Onager or Asiatic Wild Ass

Why Onagers are like Horses

Onagers, also known as Asiatic wild asses, are the most horse-like species in the world and inhabit portions of Asia. While their legs are slightly shorter than an average horse, they still look very similar. Both horses and onagers have a mane and tail, but an onager’s mane is short and stiff, and their tail has little hair rather than the long, flowing hair of a horse. Both animals are herbivores, preferring to graze on grasses and plants.

4. Zebras

Why Zebras are like Horses

Zebras are a species of wild horse that are recognizable by their black and white stripes. They are native to Africa and are closely related to horses. Both zebras and domestic horses are members of the Equidae family and have physical similarities such as hooves. However, zebras are not as fast as horses and tend to be more aggressive, which explains why they do not have as close of a relationship with humans. Both mammals are herbivores and have four single-hooved feet.

9 Animals Like Horses

5. Rhinoceros

Why Rhinoceroses are like Horses

Rhinoceroses may not immediately remind you of horses, but these two mammals actually share a common ancestor. The Cambaytherium, a long-extinct cousin of horses and rhinos, was a pig-sized herbivore from which scientists believe all odd-toed ungulates descended. Rhinos are also herbivores like their distant horse cousins. Despite their physical differences, both rhinos and horses have an odd number of toes on each foot and are part of the odd-toed ungulate group.

6. Tapirs

Why Tapirs are like Horses

Tapirs may appear more closely related to pigs, but they are more closely related to horses and rhinos. They are descendants of the Cambaytherium, just like horses and rhinos. Tapirs have three toes on each foot, making them odd-toed ungulates, similar to horses. They are herbivores and very social creatures. Just like horses, tapirs like to graze in groups, called a candle.

9 Animals Like Horses

7. Moose

Why Moose are like Horses

While the similarities between horses and moose may not be vast, they do exist. Both animals are herbivores and have hooves, with moose having cloven hooves. Despite the split down the middle of their hooves, moose and horses are both part of the same group of odd-toed ungulates.

8. Okapi

Why Okapis are like Horses

The okapi is a unique animal that is similar in shape to a horse, with a dark horse-like chestnut coat on its midsection. Okapis have a longer neck like their giraffe cousins and striped hindquarters like a zebra. Both okapis and horses have hooves, though okapis have two toes encased in their hooves rather than one, making them even-toed ungulates. Both mammals are herbivores.

9 Animals Like Horses


Horses are well-known and recognizable creatures, with a long history of domestication and a close relationship with humans. They have distinct physical characteristics and behaviors that make them easily identifiable. However, there are several other animals that share similarities with horses. From close relatives like donkeys and zebras to distant cousins like tapirs and rhinos, these animals exhibit traits that have been passed down for generations. While no animals look exactly like horses, many possess very similar characteristics and even share ancient ancestors. Exploring the diverse world of equine-like creatures allows us to appreciate the beauty and diversity of nature.

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