Stature is affected by many polymorphisms of small effect in humans 1 . In contrast, variation in dogs, even within breeds, has been suggested to be largely due to variants in a small number of genes2,3. Here we use data from cattle to compare the genetic architecture of stature to those in humans and dogs. We conducted a meta-analysis for stature using 58,265 cattle from 17 populations with 25.4 million imputed whole-genome sequence variants. Results showed that the genetic architecture of stature in cattle is similar to that in humans, as the lead variants in 163 significantly associated genomic regions (P < 5 × 10-8) explained at most 13.8% of the phenotypic variance. Most of these variants were noncoding, including variants that were also expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) and in ChIP-seq peaks. There was significant overlap in loci for stature with humans and dogs, suggesting that a set of common genes regulates body size in mammals.