17 Jul 2011

Horse Leg Markings


Horse leg markings are a varied as the animals that display them.
Almost all horses have leg markings of some sort, from a tiny spot of white to whole white legs. Here are the general definitions of each marking (which are a bit more definitive than markings on the face because they are based on leg anatomy.
Coronet
This is the smallest of the leg markings & shows the least amount of white. The mark is only displayed around the coronet band, generally rising no more than in inch up from the hoof.
Coronet Marking
Coronet Marking
Pastern
Often difficult to distinguish from the coronet marking, the pastern takes up where it leaves off. The white mark extends more than an inch above the hoof over the pastern but stops at or below the fetlock joint.
Pastern Marking
Image from Una_Smith
Pastern Marking
Fetlock or Boot
Taking up where the pastern leaves off, the fetlock white marking extends up over the fetlock joint up onto the cannon area.
Fetlock Marking
Fetlock Marking
Sock or High White
The sock white marking extends beyond the fetlock but doesn’t reach above the knee or hock of the animal.
Sock Marking
Luckys legs.
Stockings
Perhaps the flashiest & definitely the largest of the white markings, stockings extend above the knee or hock and can bleed onto the flank or belly.
Stocking Marking
Image from Karakal
Stocking Marking
Ermine Spots
Ermine spots are tiny spots of the coat color that show up on a white marking near the coronet band just above the hoof.
lf hind side
Ermine spots on feet
Black Socks or No White Markings
Some animals have no white on their legs, although some bay animals will have black socks similar to (or in addition to) white ones.
Black Socks
Be sure to check out the Leg Markings Cheat Sheet for more information.

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