Australian Appaloosa Association
Phone : 02 6765 7969    Email 



The Appaloosa

Each horse’s colour pattern is genetically the result of various spotting patterns overlaid on top of one of several recognised base coat colours, discussed further on our Colours page.

Artwork depicting prehistoric horses with leopard spotting exists in prehistoric cave paintings in Europe. Images of domesticated horses with leopard spotting patterns appeared in artwork from Ancient Greece and Han dynasty China through the early modern period. In North America, the Nez Perce people of what today is the United States Pacific Northwest developed the original American breed.

Settlers once referred to these spotted horses as the “Palouse horse”, possibly after the Palouse River, which ran through the heart of Nez Perce country. Gradually, the name evolved into “Appaloosa”.

Today, the Appaloosa can be found across the globe, with associations and studbook registries in America, Australia, New Zealand and across Europe, just to name a few.

The first Appaloosa imported into Australia, Clover Joker Bull (pictured), arrived in the very last 1960s, born on the shipping journey from the US to Australia, becoming the first Appaloosa Registered with the Australian Appaloosa Association.

The modern Appaloosa is known for its agility and versatility. Showcasing the breed talents across a variety of disciplines from the highest-level dressage, endurance, racing, Halter, Western Performance, Sporting, Cattle events and more.

Prize money is not to be considered remuneration. Payment of entry fees, expenses, etc. by any person other than the person’s spouse, parents, defacto partner, child of the family, grandparents, brother(s) or sister(s), niece(s) or nephew(s) shall be considered remuneration.


The spotted horse, later known as the Appaloosa, trace back through the pages of history. The first evidence of images of the spotted horse were found in 20 thousand year old paintings in France, proving the Appaloosa has graced the pages of history across the globe.

Appaloosa Colours

The colours and variety of coat pattern is honestly why we love them!

Like a thumbprint, no two Appaloosa coat patterns are ever the same, coloured or solid horses alike.

Here we explain the most prevalent colours and coat patterns that we base our horses’ colours on.


Genetic Disorders

The AAA Ltd have rules and genetic testing procedures in place in regard to a number of Genetic Disorders that may be found in Appaloosa bloodlines.

As from 1st August 2012, all scientific testing to determine parentage and/or the presence of genetic disorders must be carried out through the AAA Ltd Office.