Tobiano Color Pattern Information

This page will help you Learn about the Tobiano Color Pattern in horses.

Tobiano (pronounced tow-be-yah-no)

Tobiano Color Pattern

  • Usually, all four legs have white markings below the hocks and knees
  • A dark head with or without facial white (a blaze, strip, star or snip.)
  • Spots are regular with distinct round or oval patterns that extend down and over the neck and chest that can give the appearance of a shield
  • The tail is often two colors
  • White crosses the back between the withers and the dock of the tail
  • The dark color usually covers one or both flanks

Test Results:

Animal Genetics offers DNA testing for the Tobiano gene. The genetic test verifies the presence of the chromosomal inversion and presents results as one of the following:

T/T Homozygous Positive for dominant Tobiano gene mutation, carrying two inherited copies of Tobiano. Will always pass Tobiano to foals. For breeding purposes, homozygous Tobiano horses are highly desirable as they are guaranteed to produce Tobiano foals regardless of their mate.
n/T Heterozygous Positive for the dominant Tobiano gene mutation, carrier of a single inherited copy of Tobiano. Horse's base color may be modified to varying degrees by the Tobiano markings.
n/n Negative Non-tobiano horse.

Here are some photos of the Tobiano Color Pattern in Horses

Click on the pictures to make them larger.




Do you have a Tobiano horse that you would like to add to this gallery?  Please send the photo with a note to us at, and we will add the photo to this page.

References: Animal Genetics and Wikipedia

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