Can horses, ponies or donkeys mate with zebras?

Zebra can breed successfully with domestic equids, and such matings have been used to create a variety of hybrids. Where the stallion is the zebra, then the hybrid's name begins with a ā€œzā€, as in the case of the zorse, which is the result of a mating between a zebra stallion and a horse. The foal from the reverse pairing is called a hebra. It is is possible to break and ride such offspring, although a purpose-made saddle is likely to be essential.

Ponies too have been mated with zebras. Various names have been given to such crosses, resulting from a zebra stallion mating with a jinny, of which zonkey is most widely-used. Other descriptions sometimes used include zedonk and zebadonk.

A male donkey, called a jack crossed with a zebra mare, will produce a hybrid called a zebrinny, or sometimes a zebret. The reverse crossing, between a zebra stallion and a female donkey result in a youngster called a zonkie or occasionally a zebrass. There is actually no significant difference in appearance however, between these various hybrids.

Most crossings actually involve male zebras, with females being used for breeding programmes featuring their own kind. In their native Africa, these striking relatives of the domestic horse live in herds, being rarely been broken and ridden, although this has occurred on occasions. In parts of Mexico, a strange tradition has grown up whereby pale-coloured donkeys pulling carts have sometimes been painted to look like zebras (see picture).