Difference Between Zebra and Horse (With Table)

Some animals belong to the same family, due to which they have similar or some same features. This makes it difficult to differentiate between them. Examples of such animals are horses and zebras. Both of them have similar features as they belong to the same family but are different species. Although they can be differentiated easily by looking at them due to their different physical appearance, other than that, they also have other differences. It is important to understand them to have a good general knowledge of animals. Following are all possible differences between horse and zebra.

Zebra vs Horse

The difference between zebra and horse is in their body appearance and characteristics. Zebras are short and black-white animals their tails and other body features resemble the donkey, their hooves are much harder and can be different based on their environment, whereas horses due to long legs are taller than zebras, they can be of many colors, which also include brown and grey (they cannot be found in zebras) their hooves are comparatively less hard. Due to their different length of legs, their speeds is also different; horses are faster (due to long legs) whereas Zebras in comparison to the horse is less fast. Other than these differences, they also differ in terms of the sound they can make and the weight or size of the body.

Zebra is an animal that belongs to the Equidae family. Their body is covered whit white and black striped coats. They can easily rotate their ears in any direction and can run faster than a lion. They can make several sounds, including barking, whining, etc., a group of them is known as zeal. Only three groups of them are left as living members on earth,

A horse is an animal also belonging to the family of Equidae. They can also be domesticated. They have evolved in millions of years. They have long legs with a tail. Their body has many colors; they can be white, black, brown, etc. they have excellent cognitive abilities. They can understand the words and emotions of others. They are also smart animals. They make neighing and whining sounds.

Comparison Table Between Zebra and Horse

Parameters of ComparisonZebra  Horse
ColorBlack and whiteMany colors
Height  ShorterTaller
FeetHarder hoovesLess hard
Bark  They doThey don’t
Size/weight  LighterHeavier

What is Zebra?

Zebras are animals that can be seen in zoos and some other places. Some interesting facts about them are:

  • They don’t eat other animals, but only plants and plants related to food. 
  • There are only three species are living on earth. Each species have their own or different types of stripes on their body color remain the same.
  • Zebra can see colors and have excellent eyesight. They are social animals that like to spend time in groups and social, among others. 
  • After birth, the baby zebra can stand for 6 minutes only. 
  • They can hear others from a good distance.
  • They are becoming endangered, and some of their species are already extinct.
  • Underneath their black-white skin, they have black skin.
  • They can run faster away from danger and can also kick if some animals come closer to them. They form a group around the injured animals or members of their group.

What is Horse?

Horses are animals that play an important part in society and have been part of it for ages. Some of the facts that are not commonly known by people about them include:

  • They cannot breathe through their mouth like humans and other animals; they can only breathe through their mouths. 
  • They can sleep anywhere while standing. It is well known that, like humans, animals need to lay down on the ground for sleeping, but this is not necessary with the horse. They can sleep comfortably while standing as well.
  • They have fast reaction senses. They can react faster than a normal human. In dangerous or urgent situations, they can react in just 0.3 seconds to kick or attack.
  • Horses can move their ears in any direction (in 180 degrees). This is possible as they have more than 5 different muscles in their ear, which makes this movement possible.
  • Horses can see the direction they are not facing due to the placement of their eyes, which is on the sides of their head; they can see their prey from far away. They can see 360 degrees. 
  • The age can be easily determined by looking at their teeth.
  • Earlier ancestors are believed to be lived 55 million years ago. 

Main Differences Between Zebra and Horse

  1. The first most and easiest difference between both animals is the color differentiation, while zebra only has two colors in their body, that is black and white whereas horses can have a different colored body, they are black, white, brown, grey, in single color or in a combination of these colors as well.
  2. Both of them also have different heights, this is due to the length of their legs, zebras are shorter as their legs are the shorter and mostly same length of their bodies’ height whereas horses’ legs are long, making them look taller (their legs are longer than their bodies). This also led to the difference in speed in them.
  3. Hooves of horses are not hard as zebras. They are soft in comparison, while zebras have hard hooves with wider heels, some of the zebras have pointed hooves which helps them in walking easily on a rock or difficult terrain.
  4. Another difference between them that could be easily noticed is the sound they can make. Horses can make neighing and whining sounds, but zebras can make more sounds that include the sound of horses, donkeys, and bark sound. The bark made by them is somewhat similar to the sound of a puppy, which is like an alarm call.
  5. As mentioned above, zebras’ legs are the same as the length of the body, which also makes them weigh lighter in comparison to the horse. Horses being taller are heavier in comparison to the zebra.
  6. Lastly, some horses can be domesticated for several reasons. For example, they are used for riding, etc., whereas zebras are not domesticated for any reason.


Therefore, it will be easier to differentiate them on the basis of other terms than their body color only. They can be confused as both of them are herbivores (eat plants and plant-related products), they are herd animals, they can run faster than a lion and other animals, they have long heads, they have a similar number of teethes, they have hoofed feet which is normally hard in general.

But the difference arises due to their different species. They can be seen in different places. Horses can be seen easily in most places, whereas zebras are not easily seen (zoos are places they can be seen), and most of its species are becoming extent, and the rest are endangered.


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmc1270882/
  2. https://agris.fao.org/agris-search/search.do?recordID=US201300466132
  3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0168159107001414
  4. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=m2wVR0OCCbkC&oi=fnd&pg=PA3&dq=zebra&ots=wJK7bxlZNI&sig=sJGCkMTWtqhHH9cFdtbqatlsI70
  5. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378775303009418
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