Keeping my mini horse in shape.

Miniature Horse Talk Forums

Help Support Miniature Horse Talk Forums:

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
1: How do I tell if my mini horse is in shape.
2: What are good exercises to keep her in shape.
I currently do obstacles, liberty, tricks, trail walking, walking on roads, etc. Here are some photos of her currently.
 

Attachments

  • C88F694D-2840-42B1-84AA-257BB69D3507.jpeg
    C88F694D-2840-42B1-84AA-257BB69D3507.jpeg
    3.6 MB · Views: 2
  • CA8B8B87-48C2-45BF-A5CA-842C21B3D766.jpeg
    CA8B8B87-48C2-45BF-A5CA-842C21B3D766.jpeg
    3.2 MB · Views: 0
  • B81F16C5-55BB-4A7D-87CE-BBF5A95017B4.jpeg
    B81F16C5-55BB-4A7D-87CE-BBF5A95017B4.jpeg
    2.2 MB · Views: 0
  • 2DFB9F38-49C7-4F88-8422-FCC5D0AECFD0.jpeg
    2DFB9F38-49C7-4F88-8422-FCC5D0AECFD0.jpeg
    2.5 MB · Views: 0

Kelly

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2021
Messages
1,556
Reaction score
4,751
Location
Fort Worth, Texas
She is sooo cute! How old is she? What is her name? Do you plan to drive her? How tall is she? She is just adorable 😍😍
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
She is sooo cute! How old is she? What is her name? Do you plan to drive her? How tall is she? She is just adorable 😍😍
Ok that’s a lot of questions but I will answer all of them.
1: she is around 8 or 9 I don’t know when her bday is.
2: I do plan to drive her in the future but I don’t know how to even drive, so I probably should learn first 😅
3: She is exactly 34” from the last hair of her mane.
Does she look in shape to you?
 

Abby P

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2020
Messages
643
Reaction score
1,923
Location
New England
It's so hard to tell with a full winter coat - they all look like Tribbles! 🤣

You'd have to feel her to know whether her weight is good but I would say, if she does all the things you're asking without getting overheated or too out of breath or tired, then she's in shape enough for what you're doing!
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
It's so hard to tell with a full winter coat - they all look like Tribbles! 🤣

You'd have to feel her to know whether her weight is good but I would say, if she does all the things you're asking without getting overheated or too out of breath or tired, then she's in shape enough for what you're doing!
She does really well, I actually get more out of breath than she does 😂 when we do a 10 min trot run 🏃‍♀️. And everything we do is up or down a hill most of the time.
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
73
Reaction score
237
Location
Colorado
Very cute indeed!!! 😍

We use the BCS weight standard. There is good overview here

With their woolies on, you have to really dig you fingers into all that fuzz to feel their ribs. But the neck crown is easy to watch for.

Sounds like you are both getting good exercise! 👍

You just may need to watch her food intake. Use a scale, don't guess.

Many here, including me, are big fans of using the Hay Pillow.

I use an analog scale like this one. They make a smaller one, but we also have a poa size pony to weigh and feed
Ohaus 8008-PN Pull-Type Hanging... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0039Y49JC?ref=ppx_pop_mob_ap_share


HTH
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
Well I can’t weigh her hay. And she gets free choice because we have goats and a sheep. I’m thinking about feeding some of her hay in the stall though with a hay net.
 

Abby P

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2020
Messages
643
Reaction score
1,923
Location
New England
The hay nets have made a huge difference for my guy. I have to give him free choice hay since I can't get there every day. Initially I used nets with 1" holes but he could still eat the hay really fast so I switched to the 3/4" hole nets from Hayburners - no knots so they are easier on their noses too. That resulted in just about perfect intake for him, and once I finally succeeded in eliminating his grass (by making a track, fencing off the inside of his paddock), his weight has stayed really good and he can still increase his hay intake if he needs to when the weather is cold.

But - they can inhale a HUGE amount of hay very quickly if fed outside of a net so just keep that in mind for when she's out with the sheep and goats! She may be getting a LOT of hay.
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
The hay nets have made a huge difference for my guy. I have to give him free choice hay since I can't get there every day. Initially I used nets with 1" holes but he could still eat the hay really fast so I switched to the 3/4" hole nets from Hayburners - no knots so they are easier on their noses too. That resulted in just about perfect intake for him, and once I finally succeeded in eliminating his grass (by making a track, fencing off the inside of his paddock), his weight has stayed really good and he can still increase his hay intake if he needs to when the weather is cold.

But - they can inhale a HUGE amount of hay very quickly if fed outside of a net so just keep that in mind for when she's out with the sheep and goats! She may be getting a LOT of hay.
Do you think if she’s in stall half of day worked with and I make sure there’s barely any hay when she out (except at night ) it would make a difference. She is around 317 according to a weight calculation heart girth x heart girth x length divided by 300. But a chart I found that uses just girth for minis says she’s 293.39 pounds that’s about a 24 pound difference.
 

Abby P

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2020
Messages
643
Reaction score
1,923
Location
New England
I think that in order to know anything you need to have a good idea of what her condition score is with her current management, and then make changes only if needed. Knowing her weight is helpful since then you can have something to compare with but you need to know what is a good weight for HER. If what you're doing now works then stick with it! If she's too fat or too ribby, then make adjustments.
 

1roadtoad

MHT Supporter
MHT Supporter
Joined
Aug 4, 2022
Messages
94
Reaction score
244
I drove myself crazy last year when I got my minis Rocky and Cooper. Rocky looks like he is about Rosie's size. He is 34" tall about 8-9 yrs. and is very similar in stature to your Rosie. When I tried to calculate his weight, I also came up with 2 different figures, again, very similar weights to what you came up with for Rosie. Because I got my boys from a rescue I didn't know whether they came from a dry lot or green pasture, grain or no grain, so I was super nervous about how to feed them. I purchased hay nets and the above referenced hay pillows, because I was afraid to over feed them. I tried the hay nets and found them to be a pain and never tried the pillows (I still have 2 brand new ones in packaging). I decided rather than drive myself crazy with worry I'd just feed them the same as I do my 2 mini donkeys (and my previous mini who passed away), which is free grazing in the pasture during the day (just watch them in the spring when grass has a lot of sugar) and give them a slice or two of good quality hay during the night when they are stalled. All my minis also get 1/4 cup of low carb grain morning an night. The boys seem to be doing fine and their weight hasn't really changed one way or the other in the past year. I should add that they are also super active and run around constantly, so I'm sure that this helps keep their weight in check. Others on this site have way more real experience with minis than I do. Even though I've had horses in my back yard for over 30 years, I have much to learn and each animal is different. When trying to figure out what to do with my minis, I read what others experiences have been, compare and add them to my own experiences and come up with a plan for whatever the issue or task is. If I see the plan isn't working, I modify it until it works. So far it seems like you are doing great with Rosie. I look forward to your future adventures.
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
I just want to get her in shape the best I can. She’s lost weight and isn’t as bad as she was at around 350 or 370 I think I just look at all these other minis and just want her to look like that. What I mostly want is her belly to tuck up because otherwise she’s not really fat.
 

Abby P

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2020
Messages
643
Reaction score
1,923
Location
New England
Welllll...I can tell you that some of that sagging belly might be just hair! I would go more by feeling ribs than looking at that, this time of year. Also look at width from behind...if your gelding looks ready to drop a foal then you know you're in trouble. ;)
 

1roadtoad

MHT Supporter
MHT Supporter
Joined
Aug 4, 2022
Messages
94
Reaction score
244
Minis like all beings have different shapes. Your mini may always have a belly that seems like it's lower or bigger than other minis you see on this site, but it doesn't necessarily mean she's fat. Some of the minis represented on this forum are perfect little miniature horses, but do not represent what all minis look like. As I’ve mentioned, my boy Rocky and my previous horse Lady have a body shape like Rosie’s. My boy Cooper looks less like Rocky and more like what people think all minis look, but not quite as slender. I’m attaching a couple of photos showing their shapes are different, not the best photos, but I think you can see that they have different body types. Rocky could probably lose a couple of pounds, but he’s not obese. The vet says that their weights are both fine it’s just that they are totally different body types. Rocky is little and red, Cooper is bigger (38”) and a blue roan. If I find a photo of Lady to attach, she was also 34” and had the body shape of Rosie.
 

Attachments

  • D9674586-C9D6-4BDD-8BD4-1814F5CE090C.jpeg
    D9674586-C9D6-4BDD-8BD4-1814F5CE090C.jpeg
    1.7 MB · Views: 0
  • 7B2CB479-E388-4EB8-AB46-5665915469CC.jpeg
    7B2CB479-E388-4EB8-AB46-5665915469CC.jpeg
    218.1 KB · Views: 0

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
Minis like all beings have different shapes. Your mini may always have a belly that seems like it's lower or bigger than other minis you see on this site, but it doesn't necessarily mean she's fat. Some of the minis represented on this forum are perfect little miniature horses, but do not represent what all minis look like. As I’ve mentioned, my boy Rocky and my previous horse Lady have a body shape like Rosie’s. My boy Cooper looks less like Rocky and more like what people think all minis look, but not quite as slender. I’m attaching a couple of photos showing their shapes are different, not the best photos, but I think you can see that they have different body types. Rocky could probably lose a couple of pounds, but he’s not obese. The vet says that their weights are both fine it’s just that they are totally different body types. Rocky is little and red, Cooper is bigger (38”) and a blue roan. If I find a photo of Lady to attach, she was also 34” and had the body shape of Rosie.
Yeah I guess that is true, but she gets to much hay anyway so I’m probably going to limit it just a bit.
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
I think i'll weigh her once a week ( with a measuring tape)to monitor her weight, just in case. If she gets bigger maybe less grain and/or hay. If she gets thinner i'll examine her and see if she is fine or is too thin. If she is fine ill keep on what i'm doing. She isn't fat but I do want to see if her belly can tuck up a bit. If not then I guess she has a bigger belly.
 

Kelly

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2021
Messages
1,556
Reaction score
4,751
Location
Fort Worth, Texas
The hay nets have made a huge difference for my guy.….. I switched to the 3/4" hole nets from Hayburners - no knots so they are easier on their noses too.
I also use the hayburner hay nets and love them! I dont feed grain but a ration balancer, Purina Enrich. If you want to get an extremely accurate weight you could always find a vet clinic who has those big walk on scales for dogs. Then you could see if your weight tapes are accurate. It’s really hard to tell if she is “in shape” or not with all that fluff.




This:
…. I would say, if she does all the things you're asking without getting overheated or too out of breath or tired, then she's in shape enough for what you're doing!




I just want to get her in shape the best I can. She’s lost weight and isn’t as bad as she was at around 350 or 370 I think I just look at all these other minis and just want her to look like that. What I mostly want is her belly to tuck up because otherwise she’s not really fat.
Are you talking about pictures of show minis? I would just love her for her and try not to compare her to others or you will never be happy.

I see the belly you are talking about and that could be a number of different things. It could just be hair, do you feel ribs or fat when you feel her? Good suggestions above on getting her body condition score.
 

thathorsecrazychick

Way to much time to spend on my horse
Joined
Jan 7, 2023
Messages
122
Reaction score
193
Location
Marshall Nc
Yes some show minis, but also just regular minis that are kept for fun. I love her for her and I want her to be her best. And if she can be even better than she already is. She'll be the best mini around, to me. ( she kinda already is). Again she already does eat way more hay than she needs so I was going to lower it a bit anyway. To see if she has a hay belly or not.






'I also use the hayburner hay nets and love them! I dont feed grain but a ration balancer, Purina Enrich. If you want to get an extremely accurate weight you could always find a vet clinic who has those big walk on scales for dogs. Then you could see if your weight tapes are accurate. It’s really hard to tell if she is “in shape” or not with all that fluff.'




I just want to see if she loses or gains weight. Right now I don't care about exact weight.
 
Last edited:

1roadtoad

MHT Supporter
MHT Supporter
Joined
Aug 4, 2022
Messages
94
Reaction score
244
I thought I'd add another comment on your Rosie's tummy. Before I got my mare Lady, she had had 4 babies. I don't think it would have been fair of me to expect her to look like her pre-baby making days. When she was given to me, her baby making days were done!
 

Latest posts

Top