Got an idea for a holiday? Send it to us

Submit Now

National Arabian Horse Day – February 19, 2023

National Arabian Horse Day is an informal U.S. holiday that is celebrated on February 19. It is one of those animal holidays that millions of Americans cherish. This is because Arabian horses have become so widespread in the country that, even though they could only be owned by people of affluence originally, they are now beasts that any average American can own. Despite the Middle East being the earliest origin of the horse breed, more than half of the few million Arabian horses in the world are found in the U.S. ground.

History of National Arabian Horse Day

The Scottsdale Show, under the Arabian Horse Association of Arizona, created National Arabian Horse Day in 2021 to be celebrated on February 19. The aim is to increase the public’s interest, as well as inform them about the exclusiveness of the Arabian horses. The day is also supported by the Arabian Horse Times and was first celebrated in 2022 amidst wide acclaim. This was to be expected, as the Arabian horse holds a special space in the hearts of many horse admirers.

Arabian horses are natives of the Middle East, particularly the Bedouin populated parts. Thousands of years ago, these desert Arabs bred and domesticated the animals, and have used them for purposes such as war horses. The horses were introduced into other parts of the world through the Islamic conquest of Arab warriors in European, Asian, and North African states. Although there were other horse breeds in Europe before the Arab conquests, the Arabian horse’s distinct features made it widely coveted, and between the 11th and 13th centuries, they were crossbred with the local breeds, producing European breeds with distinct Arabian features. The historic Crabbet Arabian Stud in England, founded by Lady Anne Blunt and her husband between 1878 and the 1970s, produced horses that contributed to the spread of Arabian breeds to parts of Russia, North and South America, Poland, and Australia.

In the late 1800s to early 1900s, wealthy American entrepreneurs fascinated by the beauty and distinct features of Arabian horses began to import them from the Middle East and Europe. Through the extensive breeding programs in the late 20th century, which saw the birth of about 30,000 Arabian foals yearly, the horse breed became exceedingly abundant in the U.S. Today, of the few million Arabian horses in the world, more than 50% are in America.

National Arabian Horse Day timeline

600 A.D.
Means of War Transport

Arab warriors use Arabian horses in their crusades to spread Islam throughout the Middle East, North Africa, parts of Europe, and Asia.

1,100 Years Ago
Crossbred with European Horses

The features of the Arabian horses begin to be seen in European horses, which include extended heights and increased weights.

1800s
Establishment of Farms

Arabian stud farms are established throughout Europe.

1888
American Pure Breeding Programs

Randolph Huntington starts the first American purebred Arabian horse breeding program.

1893
Heightened American Interest

Tens of Arabian horses are exhibited at the Chicago World's Fair, increasing American interest in the breed.

1908
Formation of Arabian Horse Club of America

The horse club, which is now known as the Arabian Horse Association, is formed.

National Arabian Horse Day FAQs

Why is the Arabian Horse so special?

The animal is so special for several reasons, including its beauty, physical prowess, endurance, special bonding with humans, as well as its ability to withstand harsh environmental conditions.

What is different about Arabian horses?

Besides their unique skeletal characteristics, they also have a large percentage of fast-twitch fibers, allowing them to move fast and breathe better while running due to their large and flexible nostrils.

Are Arabian Horses affectionate?

Yes, they are. One of the features that endear them to people is their ability to develop quick and lasting bonds between them and their owners or those who care for them.

National Arabian Horse Day Activities

  1. Ride an Arabian horse

    One of the best ways to celebrate this day is to get a first-hand experience of the joy of mounting an Arabian horse. Go to farm stud and ride one.

  2. Watch the Scottsdale Show

    The organizers of the holiday usually hold a horse show that involves riding competitions and exhibitions on this day. Watch the show on T.V. or better yet, take a bus to Arizona and watch it live.

  3. Appraise the horse's distinct features

    You probably have heard a lot about the Arabian horse. Today is a good day to walk up close to it anywhere it is found and observe its famous features. We bet you will be taken in by its beauty.

5 Interesting Facts About Arabian Horses That Will Amaze You

  1. Ancient horse breed

    Arabian horses are the oldest purebred horses in the world.

  2. Founding breed

    They are considered to be the foundation of all other modern horses.

  3. Domestication

    They are known as the first domesticated horse breed.

  4. Coat coloration

    Bay is the most common coat color of Arabian horses.

  5. Distinct skeletal features

    Pure Arabian horse breeds have skeletons that are different from those of other horse breeds — they have 17 pairs of ribs as opposed to 18, and five vertebrae instead of six.

Why We Love National Arabian Horse Day

  1. It makes us appreciate nature

    Looking at the exquisite natural design of the Arabian horse's features makes us appreciate the wondrous work of nature. We are in awe of it!

  2. It is versatile and ubiquitous

    The Arabian horse is a horse breed that is found in almost all parts of the world, making it highly coveted and appreciated by every horse admirer. We certainly love to admire them!

  3. It increases our knowledge

    National Arabian Horse Day allows us to learn more about the Arabian horse. It keeps us informed about the latest happenings about the celebrated breed in the U.S.

National Arabian Horse Day dates

YearDateDay
2023February 19Sunday
2024February 19Monday
2025February 19Wednesday
2026February 19Thursday
2027February 19Friday

Want to sponsor this holiday?

Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.