Mare with strange "growths"

Miniature Horse Talk Forums

Help Support Miniature Horse Talk Forums:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Nov 30, 2002
Reaction score
I'm not sure what to make of this one. This mare is about 9, she was born & raised on my place. Several years ago I noticed a few lumps just behind her poll and a couple down her neck. Vet biopsied one, and was kind of laughing when she called me. Results showed (there's a ten dollar word I can't recall) it was essentially "nasal tissue". Mare had dropped weight for awhile but picked it back up and looked healthy otherwise, vet said probably not to worry. Now - maybe 4 years later - after seeming to shrink for awhile, the lumps are back and now have become a huge mass along the crest of her neck, more on her sides and under her belly both sides of midline. They are fairly hard masses. This mare is fat, sassy, good appetite......

She is appy, and I know they sometimes have skin or tumor issues but she's my only one and I'm not really very well versed on them.

Other general information, she's a mare who has ALWAYS seemed to be in heat. Has had 4 foals, all uneventful preg/delivery. She herself was a redbag baby, and I think a little short on oxygen. Has always been just a little slow in her mental responses, but healthy otherwise. She is fat, too fat right now but grass is good and most of the mares she's with are chubby. We were going to breed her this year but I don't know now what this means for her health. Calling the vet today to run it past her, but thought I'd ask here......anyone seen this before?

I raised Appaloosas for years, and have not heard of any particular skin or tumor issues. The only skin tumors I have ever had to deal with were melanomas on a grey mare...but she wasn't Appaloosa at all.

I have read about horses having to have teeth and related matter from the ear and poll area. I think it is considered something like an absorbed twin or something along that line? this sounds similar to me.

Very curious as to what this could possibly be. Her foals have never exhibited anything similar?
Nope, her foals have been absolutely normal. Vet feels it is a tumor - or tumors - of some sort.

Her dam is grey, only relation to grey....but her dam has no melanoma or anything.

Did the vet say something about epithelium? Much of what makes up an organism comes from the same kind of tissue. Sometimes it gets confused as to where on the beastie it actually is, and starts behaving like similar tissue from another part of the animal. That's how you can get tumors that produce hair, or teeth, or whatever. Sounds weird (looks pretty weird too) but generally harmless.