Top 5 Most Expensive Horse Breeds in the world

most expensive horse breed

Some horse breeds are worth more than others (in the eyes of humans) and the following article list the top 5 expensive horse breeds in the western world today.

1. Warmblood Horses (most expensive overall)

most expensive horse breed - warmblood
Photo: Horse & Hound

In North America today – warmblood horse breeds are definitely the most expensive horse breed right now (if you look overall price across the breed). This ‘breed’ includes: Oldenburg, Hanoverian horses, Swedish Warmbloods, Dutch Warmblood horses, Trakhener and Holsteiner. Warmbloods are usually used for English disciplines such as Show jumping and dressage, and their athletic ability combined with their conformation and gaits makes them the number 1 favorite in the show ring for equestrian sports. They are in high demand today but they come with a high price tag. One of the most expensive warmblood horses ever sold was the dressage horse Totilas. His sale price was never publicly shared but its up there in the 8 figure category. 

2. Thoroughbred Horse

fusaichi pegasus - most expensive horse breed - sale price: $70million
Photo: Thoroughbred Daily

Thoroughbred horses might be the most expensive breeds if you look at a few top horses in the racing industry today. However overall thoroughbreds are very affordable, especially if they don’t excel in racing. There is a lot of money in the sport of horse racing hence their hefty price tag for the high performing race horses. The highest price thoroughbred ever sold was Fusaichi Pegasus, he sold for $70million USD after winning the 2000 Kentucky Derby and the Dubai World Cup. Seattle Dancer was the most expensive yearling ever sold, the colt sold foir $13million USD in 1985 at a public auction. This equals around $37 million in todays value accounting for inflation. Another expensive thoroughbred is Shareef dancer who sold for $40million in 1983 (which would be around $122 million in todays value). Shareef dancer is probably the most expensive horse ever sold accounting for inflation.

Thoroughbred stallions with rare popular thoroughbred bloodlines can have a stud fee up to $185,000 per foal.

The average price for a retired racehorse is anywhere between $1000-$10,000 depending on their health, conformation, personality and looks. Of the track thoroughbreds are becoming more popular for english riding disciplines as they are so much more affordable yet super athletic.

3. Arabian Horses

most expensive horse breed - arabian horse
Photo: Michael Byatt

The Arabian Horse breed is an elegant looking breed famous for their long neck, fine head and high tail. Arabian horses also tend to have a slightly longer life expectancy than other breeds. Arabian horses are one of the oldest horse breeds and originates from the Arabian Peninsula where they were bred to be working desert horses. Arabian horses were also used as war horses because of their endurance and high speed. The oldest Arabian horse ever was a 46 year old Polish Arabian mare. Arabian horses are mainly used for endurance racing and showing today. A high performance Arabian with good bloodlines can easily be priced in the 6 figure range. The most expensive Arabian horse is believed to be the Arabian stallion Marwan Al Shaqab. His owners were offered $20million for him but was rejected as he is too valuable to sell with his $20,000 stud fee. he services around 50 horses per year making his income $1 million per year. Not bad for a horse..

4. American Quarter Horse

most expensive horse breed - quarter horse Moonin the eagle
Photo: Stallionesearch

Quarter horses are known for their Short legs and muscular build. Their strong legs makes them very fast over short distances. Its a popular breed of horse for western disciplines in both the US and the international market.

They tend to be the best horses for barrel racing as they can get up to a fast speed quickly and turn on a dime.

5. Andalusian horses

Fun fact! Andalusians used to be a very rare breed in the United States 20-30 years ago and priced much higher than they are today. However the introduction of Andalusian horse breeders throughout the US and Mexico has made the horse market saturated with them and much more affordable. A young Andalusian with no previous show records or training is not necessarily expensive at all these days. However the trained dressage Andalusians from winning bloodlines still sell for 6 figures hence they still made the list. Andalusians are also used for equestrian events such as dressage. Their elegant gait makes them an excellent choice for high level dressage. The Andalusian horse breed, also known as the PRE, is a very beautiful horse breed with a powerful canter and long luscious manes. The breed originates from the iberian peninsula, they were also used as war horses due to their intelligent and calm nature. 

We hope you enjoyed this list of the most expensive horse breeds, remember that a well-trained horse from a less desirable breed is still a perfect candiate for pleasure riding and trail riding. Luckily everyone doesn’t have the desire to go to the world equestrian games.

Other expensive horse breeds include akhal-teke horses, clydesdale horse, appaloosa horse, gypsy vanner, friesian horse, american standardbred and more.

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