Difference Between Foal and Colt

The foal and colt are two different terminologies but are often misunderstood. The term for horses evolves after ages. People overlook the significance of an animal’s age.


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Foal vs Colt

The difference between foal and colt is that a colt is a male horse that is less than four years of age, whereas the foal can be either male or female and is less than one year of age. Colt refers to the horse of masculine gender or specifically a male horse, and the young female horse is described by a different terminology that is a filly. The foal can be male or female and is not defined by any other terminology.

Foal vs Colt

 The process is called suckling if the foal still has milk from her mother. The birth process of the foal is quite easy and takes only a few minutes on average.

It is called a female horse only if it has crossed the age of four years. Every colt is a foal because every male horse was once in a lifetime called a foal.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonFoalColt
AgeThe age of foal is less than one year of ageColt is generally less than four years of age
SexThe foal can either be male or femaleColt is a male horse
RelationshipNot all foals are coltsAll colt can be foals
Level of DevelopmentThe initial stage of birthColt is considered as a later stage of a foal
Different NamesNothing like this exists in the case of the foalThe young female horse is called a Filly, and the adult female horse is called a mare.

What is Foal?

A foal is the type of horse that is less than one year of age. The foal can be male, or it can be female as well. The foal is used mainly for the horses, but sometimes this term is used for donkeys.

The healthy foals grow very quickly from three pounds to over a kilo a day. That is why to maintain the healthy weight of the foal. It is important to include solid food.

Foal grows very fast, but still, these animals are too young to be driven or ridden. That’s the reason the foals are given proper training by humans.


 What is Colt?

Colt is confused with foal, but the colt is described as the young male horse. Colt is generally less than one year of age. The young female horse is called a filly and called a mare once it gets matured.

Colts are generally used in the horse racing world and defined as young male horses aged between two to five years. Stallions are the type of horses that are left intact if they are used for breeding purposes.


 Main Differences Between Foal and Colt

  1. The foal grows very fast, while the colt does not grow very fast.
  2. All colts are foals, as all the young male horses were foals once. Whereas all the foals are not colts because fifty percent of foals are male while the rest are females.
Difference Between Foal and Colt


  1. https://beva.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.2042-3306.1977.tb03959.x
  2. https://beva.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.2042-3306.1988.tb01492.x
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