How can I tell if my mini is happy?

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Tanimals86

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This question is about mini horse personalities, dispositions, and moods. My little stud Walter is almost 6 months old and the little guy just seems sort of world-weary. He has zero health problems and grows like a weed, but he just doesn't seem excited about life. He's exceptionally obedient for a little guy and stands for his feet to get done better than a lot of older horses. I wouldn't describe him as "shy" but maybe more like "introverted". He seems fairly bonded to his pasture made but he's definitely not even close to buddy-sour. I can take him out and lead him anywhere and he just goes along. I can't tell if he's chill and content or if he has no zest for life. I almost wish he'd be a little more difficult! Can anyone tell me about different personalities they have seen?
 

Capriole

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If I remember correctly you've had him since June?
I got Prince at the end of June and today he nickered at me for the first time! And he already had food...I feel special 😆
It's taken him awhile to let his personality out...really only since the last month or so...and he's 7 yrs old.
I suspect there's more to come.....Which doesn't bode well for me....I think he's smarter than I am 😬

A baby might be a little more shy...how is his dam? Is she really friendly? But, she's only had the same amount of time to get used to things as he has, so she still might be adjusting....
Some horses just take more time to get used to things....I think as time goes on his personality will come out more and more. Might be an idea to get him as used to as much stuff as possible while he's "chill" 😁
 

Willow Flats

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Horses do have different personalities. If his health is good he may just have a sweet disposition. He is young, so you are most likely not asking a lot of him at this point. My horse Rocko is a bit like what you describe personality wise, but once he got into training for driving he had some opinions!
 

Abby P

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Yes, my guy is also very chill about day to day stuff - after sedating him for having his teeth done, and the assistant and I having to hold him upright, my vet said "your pony has very little circulating adrenaline". 🤣 He's incredibly ho-hum about it if his neighbors come and go and he doesn't mind leaving them behind either, even though he is very friendly with them and plays with them over the fence all the time (and one of them screams and runs himself into a sweaty mess every time Rowan leaves). But like Willow Flats says - when it comes to training and being asked for stuff, he definitely has...feelings. He's not what I would consider difficult at all, but he has opinions and very much needs clarity at all times.

All that said, I could tell he was bummed when he had to be shut into a small strip of paddock to get him off the grass, and was noticeably happy when I finally got the place into a state where he could have his entire track all the way around his paddock. He spent the first few days doing laps at every opportunity and just seems to like it better. Signs are subtle, however, I think just because of his laid-back personality.

So I don't know that I'd be worried - and as Chanda says, he's young, more to come. :)
 

Kelly

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When I first got Breezy at 3.5-4 months old he was very quiet, didnt say much, watched everything, went along with things, and knew who boss horse was. By 6 months old my little Breezy definitely had an opinion. He didn’t want to step on a tarp, nor a dog bed, or anything else that wasn’t grass, dirt, or concrete.🤣 He is now 19 months old still very quiet, but still has an opinion, if he doesn’t want to do something he tries to object by not rearing but hoping his 2 front feet off the ground. It’s really hard not to laugh sometimes🤣 The older he gets, the more and more his personality is really coming out. He is such a sweet, reserved little guy😍

Then there is Stormy who use to put absolutely EVERYTHING in his mouth!! Including me 😝and rocks on the ground as we walk by, EVERYTHING! He isnt mouthy anymore, thank God, and has turned out to be the most chilled and laid back horse ever.

Shadow is alpha horse in my tiny little herd but I do have to say he minds best of all. He is very respectful of me and tries really hard to please me. He doesnt “test” me like you would think an alpha horse would. And he isn’t a nice alpha horse either, he greets the others with ears pinned, mouth open, and back legs kicking!

Tiny little Thunder has ALWAYS been a bit skiddish… or untrusting of people. Ill take him out in public and someone will reach out to pet him as we walk by and he will do his best to totally avoid it, by running along the opposite side of me 🤣 I keep asking him “how are you gonna be a therapy pony if you are scared of people?!” All my other boys love people and the attention they receive.

Edited to add:
Im sure he has a zest for life, you’ll just have to figure out what that zest is. And as he matures more and gets a little older, I’m sure he will get more zesty😘
 

Tanimals86

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Thank you very much everyone! I have to admit I sort of forgot about the boy hormones that will be showing up in him. I've been thinking of him like he's already a gelding! I think I will definitely try to enjoy his calm and obedient nature for as long as I can! Lol.
 
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