Big Jake, the now 19-year-old Belgian gelding who was crowned the world’s tallest horse by the Guinness World Records in 2010. Big Jake stands at 20 hands 2¾ inches (210.2cm tall or 82.75 in).
Big Jake took over the record of the tallest living horse from Remington, a Clydesdale horse who measured 20 hands (203.2 cm or 80 in). The only horse ever on record to be taller than Big Jake was a Shire gelding named Sampson (later renamed Mammoth). Sampson was born in 1846 and measured a whopping 21 hands 2.5 in (2.19 m or 7 ft 2.2 in).
Big Jake’s History and His Owners
Jerry Gilbert of Smokey Hollow Farm in Poynette, Wisconsin purchased Big Jake in Nebraska when he was just three years old. At birth, Big Jake weighed an incredible 240 pounds, which is about 50 pounds more than the average newborn Belgian horse.
When Big Jake was around seven or eight, the Gilbert family realized that he may the tallest living horse in the world. They reached out to Guiness World Records and to their delight the Belgian won the the record, beating the former title holder by just over two inches.
“Jake’s got a great personality, he’s very friendly, he loves to play around, play with people’s hair, he’s got a very very good temperament. A lot of people don’t say anything, it takes them about 5 minutes to comprehend how tall he really is”.
How Much Does Big Jake Eat?
Jerry goes on to say that “Big Jake is on a strict diet, he eats about a bale and a half of hay every day and as much water as he can consume. He has 40 quarts of oats per day and many vitamins – he doesn’t eat sugar or anything like that”.
When it comes to accommodation, the 2,600-pound horse requires everything to be big. His stall is 20×20 feet, almost double that of an average stall. When Big Jake is transported a semi-trailer is required.
Big Jake used to compete in draft horse competitions but has now retired from his show career. The gelding would often compete in four or six-horse hitches and would help raise money for the Ronald McDonald House Charity. He currently enjoys spending time at the farm with the other horses and meeting his adoring fans.
Where Can I Meet Big Jake?
Due to his incredible size, Big Jake has become quite a celebrity. Smokey Hollow Farm offers barn tours that give guests the opportunity to meet the giant Belgian horse.
Big Jake often travels to fairs and different events where he gets to meet some of his biggest fans. According to Jerry, the Belgian horse loves to be the center of attention, with belly rubs and neck scratches being his favorite thing. Though his size may be intimidating to some, Big Jake is known for his easy-going personality.
See this video of Big Jake and his owner:
Do you think the Belgian draft horse’s record will be beaten soon? We’ve done some research and it appears that the record still stands. Let us know in the comments below.
Also, read our article on the 7 Biggest Horses and Horse Breeds.