28 Comments on “Horse Color White Patterns – Appaloosa

  1. Dedra

    I have a coming up one year old (technically a yearling) filly who was the product of an accidental breeding between a POA and a buckskin quarter horse. I never saw the dam, but this filly was a reddish color with white spotting/frosting throughout the body and a blanket on the rump. NOW…she is slicking out her winter coat and has a bluish coat of spotting over white, the mottled skin on her rectal vaginal area, striped hooves(now that i know to see a difference) the white sclera in her eye, and a rat tail/sparse mane. Do I have a weird one?

  2. Horse_Freak101

    Not really, Dedra. Many horses, especially Appaloosas, change their coat colors as they get older or even after their first foal. It’s very common for many horses of any breed to do that. All of the changes you mentioned, ie: mottled skin, striped hooves, white sclera and rat tail are Appy markings. I rode an appaloosa/quarter horse mare who had those exact markings, with some black and bay colored spots on her whole body and is that blueish color of your filly. But before her first foal, she was a mahogany bay with a white blanket

  3. Nikki

    Dedra, thats not strange at all! My Appy mare has mottling, white sclera,striped hooves, and a nappy appy tail (That is FINALLY touching the ground. She was a frosted App, but over time has become a varnish roan. What you are describing is pretty typical.

    Fun little fact about Appy genetics…
    Horses that are heterogeneous for the LP (leopard) gene can show up as leopard Apps but horses that are homogeneous show up as few spot!

  4. Leandro

    Hi all. Some one know if i have a solid Mare and you a Sire (Appaloosa Painted, Snowcap, Blanket or Few Spot Leopard) i will have 100% Painted Appaloosas foal?

    This solid Mare comes from a cross of two Snowcap horses


  5. Ildikó


    I would like to have same this horse, i hope i will have the greatest chance to own one of the appaloosas.
    My faves are the leopard colored and on this site, the snowflake. Leopard colored because i love first at all in my life and for a long time, the dogs, and the dalmata dogs, which is exactly the same colored type animal. I had never known that there could be same this leopard colored appaloosas for example.

    On your website i have found a very intelligent snowflake horse, i dont like a lot this color type but wow how this animal look at the photo-taker!

    Thnk you reading my messages.

    Best wishes, Ildikó from Central-Europe Hungary

  6. brooke

    i have a appy who used to be a blanketed appy but both her and her brothe flash have faded and they now havevery little brown left in them. and know our new baby Bella-rose who is 1/2 paint 1/4 appy 1/4 arabianis fading like Princess and Flash butit is sad because its not as cute as it is when they dont fade.

  7. harlie schultz

    Hi my name is Harlie and I think my little pattecake is abnormal.she is a miniture pony but has a rat tail,leapard spots,striped hooves,and a white sclera.Do i have a weird one? plese tell me!!!!

  8. Paige

    Hi Harlie,

    Sounds like an appaloosa to me. Rat tail, white sclera and striped hooves are classic appy characteristics. I bet she is cute. :)

  9. Valerie

    I have a 3 month old Gypsy Vanner filly who is showing many signs of a classic Appy! She’s got the mottling, has striped hooves, and appears to already have either a small blanket started or frosting/snowflake patterns (photos of her on my website under the name Rei). I’m hoping she’ll end up a Varnish Appy much like her Sire, Rock Ranch’s Tomboy. She has slight “roaning” all throughout her coat already. Does this mean I could possibly have a Varnish Roan on my hands? Or some other interesting Appaloosa coat pattern? Love this informative page! Loved seeing the examples of so many coat patterns.

  10. Paige

    Hi Valerie,

    Sounds like you might be right about your filly. I’d love to be able to tell you more, but my knowledge of appy color genetics is limited. I’m hoping one of my readers can offer you more information.

    You have some beautiful Vanners by the way. :)

  11. Cyndi Wilburn

    Hello All,
    I have an appaloosa that I just purchased and he is hard to identify. He is really light grey over his entire body but has light colored red roan patches over his shoulders, neck, and face, flea bitten markings over his neck and shoulders, large red leopard spots over loin and hindquarters, black mane but blonde and light grey tail, and dark grey front legs from the knees down with his knees and hocks being black. He has the mottled skin around eyes, muzzle, and genital areas, striped hooves, and white sclera. I have research his markings until I believe there is no more to read on him. J/K. I was wondering if anyone could help me with his pattern?! Thanks in advance for your help.

    1. Taylor

      I was reading that you wanted to know what your horse pattern was. The pattern is called blood marks or bloody shoulder. It is a rare unexplained color and you are lucky to have a horse like that.

  12. Niki

    I have an Appaloosa mare, she’s five, i know Appaloosas change colour. My mare was born bay (with a half pasten & blaze, she is now changing colour, becoming more white, she’s a bit like the Varnish Roan (strawberry/bay raon) coat at the moment. i was wondering how do i know if she is cross-bred or pure-bred?
    What do you think will be her final, coat colour?
    Her build (muscle) and length of her mane (her tail is short as well) is like the hore in the varnish roan as well.
    how do i make her become more muculur?
    How long till her mane and tail grows? can i help the process along?

  13. Nikki


    An Annpy Gypsy Vanner huh? Sounds like an Appy… Is she a cross? If not I would be looking at her papers because GVs do NOT come in Appy.


    I can’t tell you what color she’ll end up being other than a varnish roan – they can end up being slightly roaned to almost full white.
    As for finding out if she’s pure-bred, the only way to know us by looking up her pedigree.
    For building muscle, more work!
    And unfortunately, as far as main and tail, theres not much you can do. You can try MTG, but it usually doesn’t work on nappy appy tails.

  14. Valerie

    Thanks so much for the kind comments! Glad you liked my furry buggars. :) hehehe

    Thanks Nikki!,
    Actually, GVs do come in Appaloosa patterns. It goes back to creating the breeding. One of the Native ponies had appaloosa spots, so a few lines still retain those characteristics. In fact, some Gypsy breeders overseas focus entirely on those bloodlines. Her sire is a 1st Premium European Rated Gypsy Stallion (GV registered) and her Dam was imported from one of the top importers (Also GV registered). You can also check the GVHS. Appaloosa is considered an accepted coat pattern for Gypsy Vanners.

    I agree that she definitely has the Sabino gene going for her, but her butt has a blanket across it. Her Sire has a Varnish Roan (I believe that’s what they call the color.)coat pattern, so I was interested in finding out what we could end up with.

  15. emma

    Hello I bought an apaloosa pony two months ago and he is a frost appaloosa, I had never seen one before and
    wondered if the frost was a more rare colour?

  16. verity mcdonald

    Hi , i have a query about my miniature pony,
    she is a dark Grey with white spots all over her body. and she has also tiny little black spots over her white muzzle and genitals. what colour is she??? i was told she was appaloosa. but what type of appaloosa.

  17. sharleen

    hay there just a little tip:
    but if your horse is a appy then it can not be gray because the appy asociation do not accept this so when describing one that looks like a gray it will be a roan as appys roan out not gray out big diff :)by the way great job on your website its really good

  18. sharleen

    hay there verity mcdonald
    your little mini is probly a roan with a blanket.born with a blanket but then roaned out.sounds very pretty :) :)

  19. Terri-Anne B

    hi my name is Terri-anne

    I have 2 appys! they are both yearling colts but not related in any way! I have one that is exactly like a leopard but his spots are chestnut! he also doesnt have the thin tail his is really thick! he is a double breed appy! is this normal? My other one is a supposed to be black but he has all these white hairs cumming through as if he was an old man going grey! whats up with that? i also cant figure out what type of appy he is! i suppose he is a blanket except he has no actual white blanket just big spots the size of your fist in white, actual black, and silver. but its only on his bum! is this ok? and could some one please give me a reason why he would also have one and only one brown spot? it looks as if its a white patch gone dirty! but it has been there ever since he was born! thanx :)

      1. Spot Me Happy

        ooooh forgot to add Appys love having random coloured spots. My friends Palomino has a couple of deep brown spots and I’ve seen bays with one or multiple black spots. There may be no grey appys, but theres lots of grey areas lol because the Appy colours and black and white….. Heres a whole heap in between…..

  20. Siena

    Hi my mare has all the appy charicteristics except rat tail. she is gray or maybe roan (she has dark skin) she could even be ‘frosted’. She has these little penny sized red spotts about every foot or two on the front half of her body some are in groups others are individual. Could someone please tell me what pattern she has? Her Sire was a Quarter horse her dam was a Appy/Arabian. Thanks!

  21. Geetee

    New to Appy,
    I got a Friesian/Lepoard Appy cross as a 3 year old. she had black mane & tail loosa muzzle and girl parts mottled sclera. black bay coat with white few stripped hooves. first year shed tail turned ratty, lost all mane, has kept a black forelock. turned bay with very lite bay almost palomino under hairs light frosting on butt. but had large a few large white spots, mane came in very very sparse and white. This year 2010. tail back, with white and combo black bay hairs. No mane, lost most of spots. very light bay hairs in coat with black points,Very weird.
    She is now 6. anyone have any ideas of where this color pattern might be heading?
    Thanks in advance,

  22. donna

    i was just wondering if i breed my tan and white mare to a black and white stud what color would the foal be?

  23. jamie

    I have an appy/quarter horse mix. He was born black with white spots on his rump. Then as a yearling dark Gray coat and black mane and tail with white spots on his rump.now at 5 years Old he is pure white with white mane and tails and his spots on his rump are black. I jus
    t bought him in January and I have seen this coat but would love to knowwhat it is called?? And now that my wooly mammoth is shedding his coat is so thin. Is this normal and how do I care for the thin coat?heis pink underneath. He was a World halter horse and I am attempting to retrain him for low level hunter jumper.

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