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Cremello Horses – Everything You Need to Know

By Anne Forsberg


Updated on

There are plenty of horse colors that you can see out there, but very few of them are as majestic and luxurious looking as the Cremello.

As the name implies, the term “cremello” refers to any horse that has a cream color with no markings and a white mane and tail. At the same time, these horses usually have blue eyes and pink skin, making them stand out from the crowd almost instantly.

Everybody loves seeing Cremello horses around, but not a lot of people know what this color implies and the usual traits that these horses show off.

As such, for today’s article we decided to take on the role of the whistleblowers, giving you a detailed insight into everything that makes this horse color special in the first place.

But before we can get into everything, we need to answer a question so that we make everything clear right off the bat:

Is Cremello a Color or a Horse Breed?

Cremello Horse color

This is actually a very common misconception that a lot of people have regarding Cremello horses, but the answer is as simple as they get: Cremello is not a term referred to any specific horse breed nor is it a breed in itself, it is actually just a color that can be found sported by any breed whatsoever.

The color in itself comes directly from the color genetics of the sire and the dam, and while there are some breeds that are more predisposed to carry these genes, such as the Quarter Horses, the Shetland Ponies and the Saddlebreds, for the most part, any horse breed can end up with a Cremello horse.

As you can tell from the pictures, the Cremello horse’s base color is red or chestnut, and as soon as this base color comes into contact with two cream dilution genes, you get yourself the desired result.

At the same time, you shouldn’t mistake the Cremello horse with Palominos or Buckskins, since Palominos are chestnuts with a single cream dilution gene while Buckskins are bays with a cream dilution gene.

Snowy River Cremello Thoroughbred Stallion
Snowy River Cremello Thoroughbred Stallion / facebook.com

So, by using simple math, we can tell that by breeding two Palominos together, you do actually end up with a 25% chance to get a Cremello colored foal.

But just to reiterate, the term doesn’t refer to any specific breed and at the end of the day, as long as the genes are in order, you can get yourself a Cremello horse from any base breed.

At the same time though, there is another common misconception that goes around quite a lot nowadays, and that is the fact that Cremello horses are the same as albino horses.

While they do have blue eyes, a pale coat and pink noses though, they are different from albino horses because these albinos are born all white and have absolutely no pigment in them.

You can simply put them right next to each other and compare their color firsthand if this is too confusing to you. That way you’ll quickly be able to discern the fact that the albino horses are a lot whiter than the Cremello horses.

Temperament and Behavior

Cremello Temperament

A lot of people actually believe that blue-eyed horses are a lot wilder than the typical horse, but there has never been any sort of study done to prove this in the first place.

Instead, what we can say from our personal opinion is that blue eyed horses are all the same as any other horse on the market, albeit they are a bit on the cuter side because their eye expressions tend to pop out a lot more.

Just keep in mind that the appearance of a horse is never an indicator of its temperament or character, it is all about how you treat them, the same way that you can see rottweilers that are the sweetest babies in the world and golden retrievers that attack their owners endlessly.

Now, some breeds can be a bit more predisposed to violent outbursts yes, but that doesn’t mean that you should avoid certain breeds like the plague just because there are a few bad eggs in the basket.

Most horse breeds nowadays are very friendly and they get easily attached to their owners, take the Quarter Horse for example.

If you can get yourself a Cremello horse of the Quarter Horse breed then you will be happy to hear that this breed is most often times very happy to work with you and is anything but violent.

The Arabian horse on the other hand can be a little easier to rile up, but as long as you give it its space and you treat it well, you should never be afraid to interact with your horse.

Appearance and Varieties

Cremello Draft Horse

We mentioned previously how a lot of people mistake the Cremello, the Albino and the Perlino breeds with one another, but as soon as you get a little more accustomed to the differences between them, you will never have to worry about making this mistake ever again.

The standard cremello horse is known for having an unspotted cream-colored coat, as well as a white mane and tail. On top of that, they always have pink skin underneath that cream colored coat, with blue eyes and a pink nose also standing out quite a lot.

So, while the base of both the Cremello horse and the albino horse are the same, you can quickly tell them apart from one another by simply looking at their coats. As the name implies, albino horses have white coats while Cremello horses have cream-colored coats.

But this doesn’t apply when differentiating the Cremello horse from the Perlino horse, instead you need to look at their mane and tail because Perlinos tend to have a more distinct reddish hue to them which is never seen in Cremello horses.

This may all sound confusing for now, but simply check them out side to side and you should be able to tell the difference right off the bat by simply remembering these key differences.

Common Myths About Cremello Horses

Cremello Horse appearance
Cremello Horses and Ponies group / facebook.com

Because they are so hard to come by, Cremello horses have a ton of random myths and misconceptions about them that pretty much attack them for just looking different.

One such myth has to do with their pink skin, as some people claim that their pink skin sunburns a lot easier and because of this, Cremello horses are a lot more likely to develop cancer later on down the line.

This is completely false, since there is a clearcut difference between pinks. So, while this may apply to bald white-faced horses, sunburn doesn’t apply to double dilutes. In fact, according to most Cremello owners out there, they actually sunburn a lot less frequently than most other horses out there.

The reason as to why there are still avid believers of this myth is that there have been some Cremello horses that were found with cancer, but that had nothing to do with the Cremello gene, instead it was based around their breeds.

Cremello horse skin
Photo by Лена / wikipedia.org

Another myth that is spread everywhere these days has to do with their color yet again, stating that double dilutes are just lethal whites that survived, and as such they can end up with lethal white foals.

For those that don’t know about lethal whites, they are essentially white foals that die very shortly after birth. As such, the term “lethal white” refers to a genetic defect, one that many people have actually attributed to Cremello horses.

Last but not least we would like to bring up the myth that if you breed two double dilutes with one another, you are going to end up with a foal that is full of genetic problems.

This is because people believe that these cream genes accumulate, which isn’t the case. You can only have two cream genes in your horses, that’s all the foal will get, and there is no real reason as to why these foals should be predisposed to any sort of genetic disposition.

How Much Do Cremello Horses Cost?

Cremello Cost

We mentioned previously how Cremello horses are quite rare, which is why you can expect them to also be quite expensive too.

For the most part, Cremello horses are highly in demand, and while their prices are not exactly astronomical, they are definitely higher than the price for any regular horse.

But just keep in mind the fact that the rarity also applies to the breed of the horse, so if you want a Cremello horse of a breed that doesn’t usually produce Cremello horses, you may be forced to pay a lot more to say the least.

At the same time, you can save a lot of money by going for a standard breed that is known for producing a lot of Cremellos.

A Lusitano mare for example could cost you quite a handful, with the standard mare raking up as much as $20,000, while the Quarter Horse can cost you around $2,700. This all depends on the breeder of course, but very rarely will they surpass these prices.

Another reason as to why the price is so high is because Cremello horses always come with a pedigree and a plethora of documents which proves the fact that they do carry the double diluted gene in the first place.

Since they are going to be very expensive nonetheless, we do recommend that you take your time and you buy your Cremello horse from a more reputable horse breeder so you won’t end up with any problems later on down the line.

How to Take Care of a Cremello Horse

Cremello Care

There are a lot of companion animals out there, but very few of them require as much taking care of as the horse.

This is because horses require your attention constantly, and not only that but they are also very much so a constant financial investment that you will need to continue to pour money into so that they can live a long and happy live.

You will need to provide them with the perfect diet for their needs, and when the time comes, you will need to invest into proper housing so that they can be protected from predators.

Vet visits will also be required every now and then, and if you think that you can be a cheapskate with this while owning a Cremello horse, you’ll be sad to hear that you’re mistaken.

Not only do Cremello horses require all of that, but they also need you to give them even more attention due to their light coat coloring.

If you live in a sunnier area, you should make sure that your Cremello horse doesn’t have to deal with sunburns or anything of that sort. You can check off this box by simply building the stables with proper roofing so that they can be kept out of the sun at peak hours.

You can also invest into some horse sunscreen and UV blocking masks if the sun is getting so powerful that you fear your horse may get skin issues because of it.

Are Cremello Horses Good with Other Horses?

Cremello Horses

Cremello horses don’t really have any sort of genetic traits that are spread across them, instead what you need to do is you need to look for the specific traits of the breed.

So, while it may be easy to say that Cremello horses get along with any other horse breed out there, this isn’t the case as for example an Arabian Cremello horse is definitely not going to get along with everyone else.

For the most part, you can quickly determine whether the Cremello horse will disrupt the silence around your barn within the first couple of days, because that’s when the pecking order is officially established.

If the horse start squabbling around, you will need to keep a close eye on them, but if they end up injuring one another then it may be time for you to move them elsewhere.

We always recommend that you introduce the horses to one another across a fence, so that they can interact with one another safely and even if things go bad, you can still separate them before they start attacking each other head on.

Health and Diet

Cremello Color

For the most part, the Cremello horse’s diet should consist of good pasture alongside high quality hay. Most experts agree over the fact that your horse will eat around 1- 2% of its body weight in roughage daily in order to be at their healthiest.

Just keep in mind that you may want to avoid feeding your horse immediately after or before they exercise. This is very important because their digestive process does require a lot of blood and oxygen to get the job done, and a lot of food is not going to do them any good.

You should definitely avoid exercising while your horse’s stomach is full, because if you do so, they can quickly end up developing colic.

Just make sure that you give them about an hour or so for them to process their food, if you do that then there shouldn’t be any problems to begin with.

You can also keep a lookout for the horse’s beathing rate to go back down yourself before you start making them work for you.

As far as we know, the Cremello horse color gene isn’t predisposed to any sort of diseases whatsoever. Instead, similar to every other aspect that we mentioned before, keep a lookout for the breed’s specific health problems when researching this.

Some horses are a lot more likely to get a genetic disease, and while that may be sad, it is one thing that you will have to learn to live with if you really want a Cremello horse of that breed.

The most important part about their health and nutrition though is always going to be the water that you give them. As long as your Cremello horse has access to fresh, clean water at any and all times, they will deal with everything else in due time.


Cremello horses
Legacy Arabians / facebook.com

There is no doubt about it, Cremello horses are some of the most beautiful horses in the world. While there are plenty of amazing horse breeds for you to choose from, if you want to make them all the more special, we recommend that you go for a breeder that can give you a Cremello version of it.

With that being said, there are no real downsides to owning a Cremello horse other than the base price being quite high. This is very easily explained by the fact that Cremello horses are so much more expensive than the average horse.

But if you can handle that price tag and you really want to have a Cremello horse of your own, then we can’t recommend this color variety enough. Simply put, there is no reason for you not to, so why not get your hands on a Cremello horse today?

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About Anne Forsberg

Anne has been riding since she was only 5 years old and she's been obsessed with horses ever since. An avid horsewoman now, she loves horses and this sport more than anything else, sharing stories and info that she hopes will be helpful and meaningful to anyone who's on their path to become a better horse owner, a better rider and why not, a better person. Learn more about Seriously Equestrian's Editorial Process.

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