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Quarab Horse Breed Profile

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The Quarab horse is a unique and versatile breed with a rich history and a bright future.

Originating from a blend of the Arabian and Quarter horses, the Quarab horse is renowned for its docile disposition, versatility, intelligence, speed, and commitment. The Quarab is a medium-sized horse with a strong, muscular build, deep chest, broad back, and strong, sloping shoulders.

Its endurance and agility make it suitable for long-distance riding.

This article will explore the Quarab horse in detail, from its history to its characteristics, potential uses, and disciplines.

If you want to learn more about this fascinating breed, read on!

Quarab Horse History and Origin

The origin of the Quarab horse breed dates back to the 1960s in North America.

It was a hybrid breed developed from a cross between an Arab and a Quarter Horse and quickly became a beloved breed. 

In 1989, the United Quarab Registry was formed to celebrate the beauty of the Quarter horse and Arabian horse crossbreed.

In 1991, the Painted Quarab Index was introduced to showcase the stunning tobiano and overo coat patterns of the American Paint Horse.

This recognition led to the establishment of the International Quarab Horse Association (IQHA) in 1999 and the formation of an official studbook in 2000.

The International Quarab Horse Association remains the driving force in the Quarab breeding business. 

Over the years, Quarab horses have become popular in many disciplines, including show jumping, dressage, and even endurance riding.

This hybrid is also popular for novice and experienced riders due to its wide range of unique characteristics.

Quarab Horse Characteristics

The Quarab horse is a unique breed known for its hardiness and gentleness.

They are medium-sized horses of amazing strength and endurance, with well-muscled bodies, kind eyes, and a gentle demeanor that makes them a great companion.

Here is a characteristics table of a Quarab horse, showing it, overall, to be an outstanding choice.

Characteristics of a Quarab Horse
SizeHeight: Between 14 to 16 hands or 55 to 64 inches (142 to 163 cm)
Weight: 900 pounds
ColorsThese horses can show various colors from their parent breeds, ranging from spotted to solid hues. 
A well-known shade is buckskin.
ConformationThe ideal Quarab length from the horse’s hip to the buttock is approximately ⅓ length of the body.
TemperamentIntelligent, calm, highly trainable nature, and docile
Lifespan30 years


Quarab horses are larger than ponies but not as large as traditional horse breeds.

They average between 14–16 hands tall and can weigh anywhere from 900 to 1000 pounds

While these horses are typically athletic and agile, their larger size makes them great for various riding purposes, whether leisurely trail rides or competitive show jumping.


Quarab horses can come in many beautiful colors. To suit every rider’s preference, these horses come in various colors, including bay, chestnut, black, gray, palomino, buckskin, and dun

Each horse is special and unique, with their distinct color and markings.

Many Quarabs also have gorgeous dapples and facial markings, giving them a unique and striking appearance.

You can also find Quarabs with white markings, such as socks, snips, and blazes, adding to their beauty. 


A Quarab horse is famous for its athletic conformation and graceful movement, with a deep chest and sloping shoulder. Its legs are strong and well-muscled, with good bone structure and hard hooves.

The horse also has a graceful, arched neck and a proud, elegant head. A Quarab has a short back and a full, flowing tail. 

Quarab horses are overall strong, muscular, and well-balanced, making them a great choice for sport and utility purposes.


Quarab horses are among the most popular horse breeds in the world, and it’s not hard to understand why.

These horses have a gentle and friendly disposition making them great companions and perfect for beginners in horsemanship. 

The breed has a mild temper and, thus, is a pleasure to ride and own. They’re known for their intelligence and responsiveness, making them easy to train and work with.

Quarab horses are also inquisitive, so they can be naughty and playful sometimes but generally stay calm and relaxed.

Their agility and speed make them great competitors in the show ring.

Lifespan and Fertility

Quarab horses are known for their longevity and ability to reproduce easily.

This is due to their strong genetic connection to the original Arab horses, and their ability to stay fit and healthy even in their senior years. 

Arab horses have an average lifespan of 25 to 30 years, with some living up to 40 years or more

These horses can enjoy a long and healthy life with proper nutrition, good care, and regular vet check-ups. Quarab horses are incredibly hardy and can survive in many climates and terrains. 

Quarab Horse Uses and Disciplines

The Quarab horse is a versatile breed for various disciplines and events. It’s favorable in cutting competitions and harness racing. 

The horse has a naturally competitive spirit, athleticism, soundness, and calm, trainable disposition. It can reach over 30 miles per hour, making it a powerful racing machine

Western Rodeos

Western rodeos are popular for Quarab horses, as they’re well-suited to high-energy and often dangerous events.

Quarabs have the agility, speed, and strength for rodeo events like barrel racing, team roping, and bull riding.

English Events

English events are a great way to showcase the skills of a Quarab horse.

This breed has perfect conformation and responsiveness for events, including dressage, show jumping, eventing, and hunter classes. Each event requires a different set of skills and disciplines to succeed. 

Dressage focuses on the horse’s ability to perform a series of precise movements, while show jumping requires a combination of speed, accuracy, and agility. 

Eventing combines the skills of dressage and shows jumping with cross-country obstacles, such as ditches, banks, and water jumps. 

Quarab Horse Racing 

Quarab horse racing is a popular equestrian sport that combines the speed and agility of the Arabian horse with the power and grace of the Quarter horse.

The horse is also well-versed in dressage, show jumping, and cross-country, which are fundamental to riders.

The combination of these three disciplines requires the rider to have a deep understanding of the horse’s abilities and limitations and the ability to remain calm and focused under pressure. 


The year 1984 saw the establishment of the first registry for Quarab horses called United Quarab Registry (UQR). This registry, unfortunately, ceased operations. 

The International Quarab Horse Association was later established in 1999 and is now the leading registry for Quarab breeding.

Seven years later, in 2006, came the Italian Quarab Horse Association (AICQA). 

Here are the requirements to complete the registration of your Quarab horse:

  • At least ⅛ to ⅞ Arabian and stock horse (Paint or American Quarter horse) blood in your lineage
  • Four horse pictures
  • A registration certificate duplicate for the sire and mare from the respective horse breed association

Genetic Diseases

Quarab horses are a unique breed of horse, combining the characteristics of Arabian and Quarter horses. Unfortunately, this combination can sometimes lead to genetic diseases specific to the breed. 

The most common genetic diseases affecting Quaraba are linked to their Arabian and Quarter horse heritages. 

Hyperkalemic Periodic Paralysis (HYPP)

HYPP results from an inherited mutation in the sodium channel gene. This leads to muscle weakness, trembling, and paralysis.

Symptoms can range from mild to severe and can even be life-threatening in some cases.

The best way to prevent this disorder is to have your Quarab horse tested for the genetic mutation before breeding.

Malignant Hyperthermia (MH)

MH is caused by an inherited mutation in the skeletal muscle ryanodine receptor, leading to an uncontrolled calcium release from the muscle cells. 

Symptoms of MH include increased heart rate, body temperature, and muscle rigidity. 

Treatment for MH includes administering dantrolene sodium, a medication that helps reduce calcium release from muscle cells. 

Hereditary Equine Regional Dermal Asthenia (HERDA)

HERDA is a genetic disorder affecting Quarab horses’ skin. It is caused by a mutation in the collagen type 1 gene, resulting in weakened skin that is easily damaged. 

Symptoms of HERDA include areas of hair loss, scarring, and blistering. These areas are often found on the horse’s back, hips, and shoulders. 

HERDA can be identified through a simple genetic test and is inherited in a recessive manner. 

Treatment for HERDA is limited and includes: 

  • Keeping the affected horse in a low-stress environment
  • Avoiding activities that may cause further damage
  • Providing a diet rich in essential vitamins and minerals

Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy (PSSM)

PSSM genetic disorder affects the horse’s muscles, causing them to become weak and stiff.

It is due to a mutation in the Glycogen Synthase 1 (GYS1) gene, which leads to an abnormal accumulation of glycogen in muscle cells. 

Symptoms of PSSM can include muscle stiffness, difficulty rising, and exercise intolerance. In severe cases, it can lead to muscle atrophy and even paralysis.

Treatment includes dietary management, exercise, and supplements to help reduce symptoms, depending on the severity of the disorder.

A thoroughbed horse behind a wooden fence

Quarab Horse vs. Thoroughbred

The Quarab and Thoroughbred horses are popular breeds for various disciplines.

Quarabs are known for their strength, speed, and endurance, making them a great choice for endurance and long-distance trail rides.

On the other hand, Thoroughbreds are bred for flat racing, making them fast and powerful. 

Here is a quick comparison between the two:

Quarab Horse vs. Thoroughbred
CharacteristicsQuarab HorseThoroughbred
Height14 to 16 hands16 hands
Weight900 to 1,000 lbs1,000 lbs
ColorBay, chestnut, black, gray, palomino, buckskin, and dunBay, brown, gray, black, or chestnut
Speed30 mph43.97 mph
TemperamentIntelligent, calm, highly trainable nature, and docileIntelligent, great work ethic and enthusiasm
Location of OriginUnited StatesEngland

Ultimately, it comes down to your individual needs and preferences when choosing between the two, as both breeds have unique strengths and abilities.


The Quarab is a unique and versatile horse breed that will be a great addition to any equine enthusiast’s stable.

With its strong work ethic, intelligence, and willingness to please, the Quarab is a breed that is sure to turn heads. 

Whether you’re looking for a horse for competition, trail riding, or just a companion, the Quarab horse is sure to fit the bill. So why not consider a Quarab horse for your next equine companion?

Start your search for the perfect Quarab horse today!