Buy a Miniature Horse
When you plan to buy a miniature horse, it is important to ask yourself the right questions and to make sure that you will be able to offer him the proper living conditions.
First thing to do is to clearly define your expectations and preferences. There are all types of minis, from the most arabic to the heaviest models. Depending on your affinities, you will have to turn to a breeder that produces the model you like.
Knowing the plan for your miniature horse will allow you to pay attention to certain specific criteria. For Company, for example, think, above all, of the character of the animal ; being able to describe yourself to the breeder will allow him to orient you towards a horse in accordance with your personality. In addition, for a Work orientation, movement, legs and back will be key points to look carefully. An attachment of kneecap, weak kidneys or a great defect of aplombs will rather be outlawed because they will represent so many weaknesses or inadequacies for certain disciplines.
Moreover, it is strongly advised to visit several farms and to have many opinions in order to forge you a precise and complete idea. This will also allow you to see the parents of your future horse and his living conditions.
Once you know precisely what type of miniature horse you are going to turn to, it is important to make sure that you can bring him the living conditions necessary for his or her blooming :
Space : for a miniature horse it is necessary to count about 1500 m² of field with a shelter (built or natural) which will protect him from wind and rain.
A companion : the horse being a gregarious animal, it is essential that you find him a buddy. The ideal is a second mini but you can consider taking a donkey, a goat, a lama, a dog...
Food : if the surface you have is not enough to feed your mini with grass all year round, you will have to provide you with quality hay. A young, broodmare or horse at work will need a flocked supplement.
Care : in addition to the annual vaccination and trimming every 2-3 months depending on the growth of the hoof, your mini may need additional care (colic, dermatitis, wounds...). Teeth should also be seen by an equine dentist once a year and a visit to the osteopath may be necessary from time to time. This is a budget to consider when making your purchase.
When you want to buy a miniature horse, there are pitfalls to avoid. Indeed, we still have many horse dealers who surf on this fashion to increase their profits. They are found on certain events or fairs where they do not hesitate to come with many minis that they confine in small enclosures. These minis are generally shetland types imported from the Netherlands at low prices to be resold around 2000 €. It is easy to realize this deception because the horses are often sick, deficient (weaning at 3 months) and have no papers as such.
It is therefore quite simple not to fall into the trap ; ask to see the papers of the horse, ask a lot of question in order to see if the speech of the seller is coherent and professional.
In the Miniature American Horse essentially, one must also beware of the conditioning of show horses. Some farms visually modify the appearance of a horse in order to amplify his qualities to enable him to win competitions. The most common practices are as follows :
Sweating : using pieces of neoprene fabric that are placed at the neck and belly attachment and which evacuate water from the muscles and refine the silhouette (neck wrap, belly wrap).
Control of the diet : often the raw fibers are removed in order to avoid the swelling of the digestive system. The horses live in box or paddock and are followed by a nutritionist in order to calculate and adapt the ration to each individual.
Make-up/shaving : harmless when used well, makeup and shaving can sometimes alter our perception of a horse.
Photo editing : the way a picture is taken may sometimes prove to be misleading. A slightly long back horse that is photographed at an angle, a diagonal ground to give a better neck orientation or even a photo retouching to improve a back line or neck tie are all known methods.
Operations : in the USA, breeders do not hesitate to carry out hormone injections to allow a young horse to take muscle more quickly and thus appear more mature physically. They sometimes even go as far as the installation of dental equipment to rectify a prognathous jaw.
In France, an American miniature horse must always have a SIRE notebook that looks like this :
The SIRE notebook does not mean that the horse has papers, but simply that it is puce and in order at the level of the National Studs. When it comes to a horse imported from the Netherlands or the UK for example, the notebooks will become passports and look like this :
Again, do not be mistaken, some merchants will tell you that it is the papers of the horse and that this explains his high price. Note that every horse must have a SIRE or a passport in case of importation, including an ONC. A horse with paper must have an additional certificate of which the following are the main breeds of miniature horses :
Paper of a miniature american horse (AMHA)
Papier of a miniature americain horse above 89 cm at the last mane (AMHR)
Paper of a british miniature horse (BMHS)