Photos and informations about the rare Shire Horse breed, Forgotten Horses a photographic project about endangered equines by The Pixel Nomad

Shire Horse

Risk Level: at risk
Local Risk Level: Vulnerable
Listed by DAD-IS, RBST
Draft horse breed from Great Britain

Informations about the rare Shire Horse

The Shire Horse, known for its impressive stature and strength, is a breed that has captivated horse enthusiasts around the world. Originating from England, this breed has played a significant role in agricultural and industrial development, pulling heavy loads and working tirelessly in various settings. Today, the Shire Horse is celebrated for its gentle nature and is often seen in parades, shows, and as a powerful partner in draught work.

Origin and history of the Shire Horse

The Shire Horse has its roots in the English ‘Great Horse,’ known for its use in medieval warfare. Its development was significantly influenced by Flemish stallions imported to England in the 16th century, which contributed to the breed’s size and strength. Throughout history, the Shire Horse has been instrumental in transforming agricultural practices and was a key player in the Industrial Revolution, moving heavy machinery and goods.

Character and features of the Shire Horse

Shire Horses are renowned for their calm and docile temperament, making them excellent work partners and family horses. They stand between 170 cm and 190 cm tall, with a powerful build that includes a broad back, strong legs, and large hooves. Their coat colors range from black, bay, and grey to chestnut, often with significant feathering on their legs.

Utilisation of the rare Shire Horse

Traditionally, Shire Horses were used for agricultural work and heavy haulage, showcasing their incredible strength and endurance. In modern times, while still used in farming and draught work, they also participate in shows, recreational riding, and as therapy animals due to their gentle nature.

Current situation of the rare and endangered Shire Horse

The Shire Horse is currently classified as ‘at risk’ by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, with a global population that has seen a decline over the past century. Efforts by breed enthusiasts and organizations are underway to preserve and increase the population through responsible breeding programs. Conservation and awareness efforts are crucial to ensure the survival and growth of this magnificent breed.

Native country

Great Britain



Risk Level

Vulnurable: ca. 6.000


170-190 cm

Coat colour

Bay, black, grey



Forgotten horse

Rare and endangered

Other names of the Shire Horse horse

Shire — Shire Horse

Explore my Shire Horse Photos

Shire Horse

All my pictures of rare and endangered horses can be licensed for private, editorial and commercial usage, and ordered as Fine Art Print as well. In addition, the albums only show a part of my large archive. Contact me directly if you don’t find what you are looking for.

Where to find the rare Shire Horse

Here are some places where you can see where you can support the rare and endangered breed. Above all I want to thank everybody who works with me.



Breed show

Event calendar

Forgotten Horses Group on Facebook

This group is part of the Forgotten Horses project and aims to raise awareness of endangered horse breeds and therefore to contribute to the preservation of the diversity of horse breeds, further free living and wild horses.
The group provides information and facilitates international exchange on rare and endangered horse breeds.
Take part in my project

Shire Horse Photoshooting

Take part in my projects Forgotten Horses and Free Horses and consequently make an impact that matters. By photographing rare and endangered horses we can raise awareness to disappearing horse breeds and therefore preserve equine diversity.

photo archive

Professional photography of Shire Horse

Are you looking for professional photos of rare and endangered horse breeds? You will find a small selection of my pictures in the breed posts, however you may ask for more specific photos directly. In short, all my pictures can be licensed for private, editorial and commercial usage.


Do you want to see more of my photos? Please follow my accounts on Instagram and on Facebook and don’t miss any new updates and pictures of my projects.