Do You Know How Many Horses Died in WW1 and WW2?

Over 15 Million Animals have been reported to die in both WW1 and WW2. That’s the price of hatred nature has to pay for humans! Horses were also the victim of these two wars.

How Many Horses Died in WW1 and WW2? Millions of animals served in both wars but died because of thirst, wounds, diseases, and starvation. Over 8 Million horses in WW1 and 0.7 million in WW2 died.

This article would state the statistics for the casualties of horses that happened during both World War One and World War Two. 

Let’s start the blog post.

What Is A War Horse Breed?

A warhorse breed is commonly known as a battle seed.

A horse used by the armored knights in recent times to fight in different wars with strong and muscular strength is a horse breed. The best-known War Horse is the Destrier.

The most common horse breeds used for battles and wars are:

  • Friesian And alusian
  • Arabian
  • Percheron

Two types of warhorse breeds were in use. Heavy Breed; serve for lifting armed knights and light breed horses; characterized by fast speed. Both were equally significant and served as the basic need of wars.

What’s The Difference Between A Horse And A War Horse?

A worth-noted point here is a simple horse, and a warhorse is not the same.

A warhorse is specially bred, trained, and nurtured to be the best fighting horse in the wars, but a simple horse is a domestic horse used as a pet.

Warhorses were bred, especially in England, and were the famous animals of the royal house and the king.

Every war horse is a horse, but every horse is not a war horse.

Horses In World War One

Horses were always of prime importance in wars and battlefields. The cavalry posters were circulated all over the cities for new hiring to find the best horses.


It has been seen in over 100 years from 1800 to 1911; the equine ratio increased from 1 million to 3 million, used against the Ottoman Empire in WW1.

The estimated number of horses in the WW1 is 10 million, including donkeys, mules, camels, and dogs.

But with several horses fighting with the armed soldiers, millions of casualties were seen on both sides. Two groups were there; one was the group of the Ottoman empire with its allies such as Germany, and the second group had great Britain, France, and the American forces.

How Many Horses Died In WW1?

The horses have put in a lot of effort for every party in WW1. Both the British and the Ottoman empires used horses.

It is believed that over 8 million (8,000,000) horses died during world war 1. Other animals killed included mules and donkeys that died due to extreme work and stress/injuries.

These horses were used to transfer the injured people, carry the knights, absorb the bombing pressure, and do other jobs during the war.

How Many British Horses Died In WW1

The British empire had started increasing the number of equine animals number from the 19th century. Till 1911, there were 3 million horses in Britain alone.

Most of the horses in the UK were war horses. During WW1, over 15 Million animals took part, and approximately 484,143 horses and other equines died from 1914 to 1918.

So horse numbers severely declined after world war one because great fatality of horses occurred on both sides. It was a horrible experience for the horses.

What Happened To All The Horses After WW1?

World war 1 ended in 1918, and had many horses were present in French as most of the wars were fought on the French Land.

The post-war delivered all the extra horses to the French. The horses were sold in France for work on farms, or eating, etc. The British had an aversion to horse meat, so they were given to the French.

Did Any Horses Come Back From WW1?

It is said that all of the horses were sold in France post world war 1. But there are rumors that a horse may have come back to the UK.

Only 1 out of Millions of horses who participated in WW1 came back. It was the horse of Major Gen. Williams. General died at Gallipoli due to wounds.

That was a massive shock for any country that increased horse population over a century, but only one horse returned home to England.

How Many Horses Survived WW1?

Many horses survived the drastic effects of WW1. But the number is still debatable.

Two million out of 2.5 million horses were treated during the war, which returned to fight again. The Britain Vet Hospital in French treated over 0.7 million horses and successfully saved 3-quarters.

Horses In World War Two

The significance of horses still existed till 1939, when the second world war started. About 6 million horses participated from both sides of Germany and the Soviet Union during the WII.

About 4 Million horses were used in WII to carry the armored knights, artillery, injured or wounded troops, and food. Horses and other animals were even used as shields against the bombs.

Horses were essential for Germany as, even during the 1st World War, when the Germans refused to get more horses, they ultimately lost the battle to the British Empire.

How Many Horses Died In WW2?

Animals were serving for fighting purposes and were used as messengers, carriers, and detectors in WW2.

Horses were again used to carry ammunition, artillery and treat the injured during WW2. Three million horses were deployed in WW2 by Germany, and about 700,000 died during the war.

The number (700,000) is only the casualties from the German side. More horses were killed from the other side.

According to one estimation, the total number of horses that died during WW2 from both sides is 2 million.

But the numbers have not been verified, as the British and allies never gave out the actual fatalities.

How Many Horses Did The US Use In WW2?

The US was an active ally of the British empire. It had the greatest number of horses at that time (1940).

The United States had 14 Million horses, out of which 52k horses were deployed in 13 regiments as logistics. The US actively helped the British army defeat Germany using cavalry units.

How Many Australian Horses Died In WW2?

Australian sacrifices will also be remembered during the second world war. The country provided full assistance to the British empire and fought against Germany in the battle.

Australia sent about 50k horses to WW2, almost 30,000 horses died. It is reported that 7000 horses survived, which were wounded and lived for seven years. But those were killed for the better.

The wounded horses were neutered and sold for meat to the French, who were very fond of eating the horse flesh and pretty much of everything.

Did The Germans Use Horses WW2?

Germany was the opposing force that fought alongside Japan against the US and America.

Not everyone knows this fact, but Germany had the highest ratio of horses in WWII. They fight till their last with all they have, not knowing they will win or die.

Germans used their full equine force approximating 2.76 million in WWII, and it is assumed that 80% of the German transportation was equestrian. The mountain and light division had more animals, but cavalries depended on horses.

The main Breed of Horses Used in WW2

Every horse was used on the battlefield, but warhorses were the front-line barriers to stopping US forces.

Germany used these horse breeds:

  • Arabian
  • Barb
  • Akhal-Teke
  • Percheron
  • Friesian

Both light and heavyweight horses were used and served to fight, carry ammunition, artillery, and injured people.

How Many Horses Survived the WW2?

(Fun fact: 1000 horses were bought daily and shipped to the US)

During the war, 2 million horses treated by the vets went back to the battleground. The Vet team of Britain in France saved 725,000 horses and successfully treated 500,00 horses.

The survival rate of horses was less than the rate of death. Even if some horses left after the war, they were not used again by the US or British Army.

The horses that survived in ww2 were also sold to some hungry butchers, like in World War I, and other horses were either killed or sold as domestic pets or working horses in the French farms.

Horses In the Civil War

Abraham Lincoln’s name was heard during the Civil war as the president of the United States. Horses were mainly used during this period (1861-1865).

Mules and horses played a significant role in the Civil War, and these equines sacrificed their lives twice as humans did. It is estimated that 3 million horses and mules were used in the Great Civil War.

As some historians describe it, a few horses were left in the end: We saw double the number of horses killed than people during the civil war.

What Were Horses Used For In The Civil War?

As big animals, horses were of prime importance in the Civil War, as the biggest need of the hour was transportation.

Horses were mainly used to transport materials, including medical supplies, wagons, injured soldiers on carts, food, water, artillery, and everything required to be moved.

How Many Horses Died In The Civil War?

In the American Civil War, there were more casualties than in any other war in history. (not talking about the Great World Wars, because they happened after this war).

Three million horses took part in WW2, and out of which 700,000 horses were killed during the war, more fatalities (3000) occurred during the Battle of Stones River.

The battle of stones river had 32000 horse and mule participants to move injured soldiers, ambulances, and artillery.

Animals and Horses In Gettysburg Battle

Gettysburg battle is one of the parts of the Civil War (1961-1965). The battle started on July 1, 1963, to July 4, 1963. It was one of the turning points in the American Civil War.

Animals were vital in every battle which happened during World War. Over 70,000 mules and horses were part of the Gettysburg battle that occurred in Pennsylvania.

These horses were used as shields when the fighter faced each other, or any party (The Unions or Confederates) threw ammunition at each other.

It was one of the deadliest wars, which nearly killed more than 50,000 people in three days!

How Many Animals Were Killed At Gettysburg?

Animals were the primary transporters of the American Civil War and World Wars (I and II).

Thousands of animals were used in the battle. An estimation suggests that over 5000 mules and horses were killed in the battle of Gettysburg. But some reports indicate that over 70,000 were killed. 

Plus, a total of 150,000 to 320,000 animals were killed!

The Civil war used animals, especially horses, like tissues. They used them and threw them away, just like in WWI and WWII.

How Many Horses Died At Gettysburg?

Horses and mules were the prime animals that were killed in any battle that occurred in history.

The American Civil war had a sequence of battles, and Gettysburg is one of them where horses died the most in just three days (July 1to July 4). It is believed that over 5000 horses were killed during the battle.

The total number of animals that died in the battle of Gettysburg is much greater than 5000. Reports believe that 70,000 animals, including horses, cats, dogs, mules, pigeons, etc., have died in just three days.

Final Verdict

Wars are catastrophic happening which may pose threats to nature. Humans fought a war for their mental satisfaction and ego, but Animals and nature pay the price.

During World Wars I and II, horses were used as the main objects to carry things from one place to another, but more horses died than humans in these battles.

It is better that we finally understood that horses are not used for wars. They are for love.

That completes our topic: how many horses died in WW1 and WW2. Comment below if you have any quest