How Many Toes Does a Horse Have?

Here's your nightly math! Just 5 quick minutes of number fun for kids and parents at home. Read a cool fun fact, followed by math riddles at different levels so everyone can jump in. Your kids will love you for it.

How Many Toes Does a Horse Have?

April 30, 2018

Wait a minute – do horses even have toes?! They do. Animals with hooves, like horses, pigs, cows, and even aardvarks, have toes! The hoof is the tip of the toe, and helps the animals walk. Even weirder, it turns out animals with an odd number of toes are all cousins of each other, and those with even numbers are cousins, too. So who has what? Horses and rhinoceroses are odd-toed: in fact, horses have only 1 toe on each foot, but scientists figured out that thousands of years ago, horses had 5 toes inside each hoof! But cows, pigs, giraffes, camels, deer, and hippopotamuses are all even-toed, usually 2 toes per foot: a big one in front, and a small one in back. The question is, where should we put the toenail polish?

Wee ones: Stick out one bare foot, and count your toes!

Little kids: In a set of 5 toes, which number toe is exactly in the middle?  Bonus: If you paint nail polish on the 1st toe, then skip the 2nd, paint the 3rd…how many toes on that foot get polish?

Big kids: Horses today have 1 toe on each foot, while goats have 2 toes on each. If you have the same number of goats and horses and there are 24 toes altogether, how many of each animal do you have?  Bonus: How many more goats would boost that group to 56 toes altogether?