Much like choosing a baby name, naming a horse is a big responsibility. It should be catchy and descriptive and unique to each individual horse.
Here are the Top 100 Horse Names according to Horse Faq’s. Sites like this are useful for getting ideas and also checking the popularity of a potential name. You want something awesome when naming a horse, but you don’t want to use something that is so popular that all of the kids (or horses) share the same name. Originality counts.
It also has to be a name you can pronounce. Nothing like praising, or cussing, your horse and stumbling through the name. You’ll also want one that you can spell if needed.
In our operation, we implement lots of naming strategies.
Naming a Horse using the Registration Papers as a Reference
We often use a registered name, or other names on the registration papers, as a guide. Registered stock offers a cheat sheet as a reference. Look through the pedigree and decide if any names stand out. We named this horse “Scooter”.
Naming Groups or Pairs of Horses Similarly- TV and Movies for ideas
Horses that are purchased in pairs or a group of horses that are the same age could be named something with association. We had a weanling named “Scooby“, and all of the horses in that “class” received names related to Scooby Doo. ex: “Fred, Scrappy, Shaggy” (of course no Daphne, because NO Mares allowed here). TV shows or movies can be of assistance when brainstorming names. We had “Hondo” and “Yuma”, both named after books and movies we’d come across. The full brother geldings: “Tango” and “Cash” were bought on the same day. Although not the same age, it was easy to remember that they had the same bloodline without pulling the papers.
Our newest additions: “Maverick” and “Commodore” are pictured below. They’re not the same age, but we purchased them together.
Naming A Horse Based on Physical Characteristics
Names are often chosen based on physical characteristics, like color. Ex: “Palodun” was a palomino horse with a dun stripe, (insert eye roll here). He is pictured below. “Sky” was a palomino that started turning gray, like the sky that was partly cloudy. “Blue”, yep, a blue roan quarter pony. Years ago we had “Toucan”. He had a big head and nose. Don’t forget our paint “Jigsaw“.
Naming A Horse While Remembering the Past
We have horses named after past owners also. “Tibbett” will never forget his previous caregiver.
It also may depend on how long you plan to keep a horse. A few years max, is the norm around here, so honestly a name only has to be “that good”. But if you just wound up with your forever horse- the name is very important. Hopefully after reading through our ideas for naming a horse, the task will be easier for you the next time a colt is born or your next purchase is made.
Don’t have your own horse to name? Try Star Stable and create, name, take care of and love a virtual horse of your own.