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The Houhynhms are set up as an ironic role model for mankind. Of all the races Gulliver encounters, these are the least humanoid. They are, however, endowed with the virtues of kindness, gentleness, honesty, honour and loyalty. I think wisdom as well. Of all the races, they are the least violent, acquisitive, dangerous or deceitful. The point Swift is making is that humanity is rotten - to see how life should really be lived, and how we should treat each other, we should look to an another creature, ideally one as gentle, noble and useful as a horse.
From memory, the other qualities he points to as admirable are:
Simple love life
Close knit family life