There are a few horse breeds that tend to produce very large horses, including the world’s biggest horse. Horse breeds more than anything determines the size, but of course, nutrition also plays a role in the final size of a horse. Horses grow quickly during their first four years and then growth slows and usually stops by year five as the horse reaches maturity.
Draft horses, in general, tend to be big and Belgian Brabant’s are consistently the biggest horses in the world. Clydesdale horses, Percheron, and Shire’s are also large draft horses. The biggest horse seems to be a title that is up for grabs as claims are frequently made but rarely confirmed.
Horses are measured in hands and the measurement is taken from the hoof to the highest part of the horse’s withers. Measurements for world-record purposes are made with the horse both shoed and not shoed. The withers are used instead of the head or neck because it is at a stable height. A hand is equal to four inches high and portions, or fractions of a hand are then converted to decimals. For instance, if a horse is 62 inches high, it would be described as being 15.2 hands high, or hh.
Currently, the world’s largest horse is named Remington and he is listed as such in the Guinness Book of World Records. Remington is a Clydesdale draft horse. Remington stands 20 hands high and weighs 3,000 pounds. Remington lives in Princeton, Texas and was originally purchased for its black and white colors and other handsome features. He is known as a gentle-giant for his calm and well-behaved nature, even when large crowds gather to see him. The previous reining horse was Radar who was born in Iowa. He stood a mere 19.3 hands tall.
Draft horses are work horses. Draft horses were traditionally bred to pull plows, wagons, and to do other farm work. Their withers, quarters, and upper body are extremely strong and large relative to the neck and head. Belgian draft horses were imported to the United States mostly prior to World War II. Remington is no exception to the general description of draft horses being extremely strong.
Remington eats nearly 60 pounds of grain and hay each day and drinks roughly 20 gallons of water. He measures over 40 inches for a collar and to shoe one hoof, takes roughly 30 inches of iron. It takes an incredible amount of money to keep and care for one of these big horses.
Previously, the world’s largest horse title has been held by Belgium draft horses, one as tall at 20 hands and weighing 2,800 pounds. Some of the previous record holders weighed more than Remington, but the Guinness Book of World Records does not recognize the heaviest animals anymore because they consider it to be unhealthy for the animals.
Other breeds that have had horses hold the world record are the Percheron, Percheron crossed with Arabian, Shire, and Suffolk. All are draft horses. The heaviest of them all weighed in at 3,360 pounds and was also the tallest at an amazing 21.2 hands high. This was a Shire breed draft horse and he was aptly named Mammoth.
Poe is also one of the biggest horses in the world. Poe lives in Tupperville, Ontario, and if measured from toe to head, he is nearly ten feet tall. Poe is also a Clydesdale and used to work pulling a cart full of crates of beer. As with other horses that have claimed in the past, or continue to claim, to be the world’s tallest horse, Poe is now taken to fairs and exhibitions across Canada for crowds to see and admire.