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Paint, Pinto, Skewbald, Piebald - What's The Difference
 By Winniefield Park   •   26th Apr 2017   •   4,349 views   •   0 comments
Paint-Pinto-Skewbald-Piebald

Paint, Pinto, Skewbald, Piebald - What’s the Difference? Many people love the flashiness of a horse that has two color coat. But there are a few ways to describe these broken coat patterns.

Pinto
The word pinto is derived from the Spanish word for ‘painted’. A pinto horse has patches of white and any other color. The patches are large, unlike the leopard spotting of some horses like Appaloosas and Knabstrups. The tendency to have a pinto coat is governed by genetics. Horse aren’t the only pintos in the animal world either. In other animals, it’s called leucism or incorrectly, partial albinism. Fish, birds, and mammals can be pintos. A human with a streak of white in their hair and patches of white skin may have ‘piebaldism’.

Paint
A Paint Horse is bred to have a stock horse type body with a pinto colored coat. Paints may not have a colored coat, however. As long as a horse has parents registered with the American Paint Horse Registry, is of the correct body type it may be registered as a Paint. This horse will likely carry the genes that will result in a pinto coat in its offspring. This means not all pintos are Paints and not all Paints are pintos.

Piebald
A piebald is a combination of white and black patches.

Skewbald
A skewbald pinto has a coat that is a combination of brown, palomino, roan, bay or chestnut and white. Basically, it’s any white and color combination that isn’t a piebald. A tricolor skewbald is a bay, having white patches, red-brown body color and black mane, tail, face and leg coloration.

Coat Patterns

Tobiano - There are several specific patterns of color combinations. This most common pattern is called the tobiano. This pattern is characterized by the two colors almost equally covering the body, white legs, and a dark head with normal facial markings such as a blaze or star. The patches of color and white have smooth edges. This is the usual coloration of a lot of pinto ponies.

Overo - Overo patterns have patches with jagged edges. And there are several specific patterns of overo. The patches of color lay horizontally on the horse’s body. The horse may have blue eyes. The head and face are often white. Splashed white horses look like they’ve been dunked in white paint, but with smooth patches of color on their bodies. Most of the body of a Sabino horse will be a solid color, with white belly patches, white legs, and white face. Tovero horses may predominately white body, blue eyes, and dark patches over the head, face, and ears.

Dominant white is rare and may result in an all white horse. Foals can be born roan-y, but turn white as the mature. These are not gray horses, nor are they pale cremello. Grey horses usually have dark skin. Dominant white horses have pink skin. They are not albinos as true albino horses do not exist although some breed registries call dominant white and pale cremello horses albino. Lethal white foals also do not survive long past birth. Along with their white coats and blue eyes, lethal white foals are born with colon abnormalities that do not affect them before they are born but make it impossible to live outside of the mare.
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