A horse can weigh 900 to 2,000 pounds, depending on the breed, age, size, and height. If a horse weighs too much or too little it can negatively affect their quality of life in many ways.
Horses with a weight of around 1,400 to 2,700 are draft horses. Their sturdy build comes with a short back and strong hindquarters. Farmers used them to pull wagons and plows before the invention of tractors. Such as clydesdale, belgians, percherons, and shires, etc.
Light saddle horses are generally between 800 and 1,500 pounds. These horses have a lighter stature, making them ideal for riding. They usually have a shorter back, a muscular chest. Such as thoroughbreds, arabian horses, appaloosa, etc.
The weight of a horse is not constant, some factors can change the ideal weight of horses. Read on to understand this matter further, as it’s a crucial part of the equines’ health.
How Much Does a Newborn Horse Weigh?
The weight of a newborn horse is 10% of its mother’s weight. It may not be sensible, but the father’s weight doesn’t affect the foal’s weight. The mother’s weight will always influence the newborn’s weight. This fact applies to all breeds.
Let’s have the calculation to show an example. A mare that is 1,500 pounds will give birth to a foal that weighs 150 pounds. But first-time mothers usually have smaller babies.
Do mares give birth to twins? Some of them do but rarely. Newborn twin foals may be below the average weight. Also, premature foals are not in the normal weight range.
If it happens, you have to consult the veterinarian. You must confirm if the newborn has health issues that need immediate attention.
How Much Does a Baby Horse Weigh?
Foals or baby horses grow so quick. The weight of a foal from birth doubles every two or four weeks. Hence, a baby horse born with 150 pounds can weigh 300 pounds in two weeks.
How Much Does a Full-Grown Horse Weigh?
As mentioned, the weight of horses varies due to different breeds. It’s essential to know their weight when they mature so you’re aware that they grow as healthy horses.
Average Miniature Horse Weigh
With a height of not more than 34 inches, a miniature horse can weigh 150 to 350 lbs. They’re shorter than ponies and have a slimmer build. A miniature horse looks like a regular horse but is shorter.
Average Clydesdale Horse Weigh
A Clydesdale horse can grow up to 6 feet with a weight of 1,500 to 2,200 pounds. With this profile information, this horse is tall and heavy, without a doubt. Thus, it’s one of the draft horses.
Average Draft Horse Weigh
Due to the tall frame and muscular body of a draft horse, it can weigh 1,800 to 2,300 pounds. This breed’s height can range from 163 to 193 cm.
Average Thoroughbred Horse Weigh
Thoroughbred horses are racing horses. They have a tall and slim build suitable for an athletic breed. While they can have a height of 157 to 173 cm, they may weigh from 990 to 1,100 pounds.
Average Race Horse Weigh
Thoroughbreds, Quarter horses, Arabians, and Standardbreds are racehorses. Due to various breeds, the average weight has a wide gap. A racehorse can weigh from 900 to 2,000 pounds.
Average Shire Horse Weigh
A shire horse is a British draught horse. Since it’s a large breed, it can weigh from 1,870 to 2,430 pounds.
Average Kentucky Derby Horse Weigh
Kentucky Derby Festival takes place in Louisville, Kentucky, every first Saturday of May. Hence, a Kentucky Derby horse is a racehorse or Thoroughbred that may weigh 900 to 2,000 pounds. Anyway, there’s no strict rule about the weight of participating horses.
Average Belgian Horse Weigh
Considered the largest draft horse, a Belgian horse can weigh 2,100 to 2,300 pounds. In general, a Clydesdale horse may be lighter by only 200 pounds!
Horse Weight Chart Based on Type
The American Museum of Natural History presented three body types of horses. They’re heavy breeds, light breeds, and ponies. One factor that we can tell them apart is weight.
Heavy breeds or draft horses are massive horses weighing 1,400 to 2,700 pounds. Percheron, Belgian, and Suffolk Punch are some of the examples.
Light breeds have long legs. These legs are for speed, racing, jumping, herding, and riding. They weigh 800 to 1,500 pounds. Ponies are the smallest breed, ranging from 200 to 1500 pounds.
|Horse Type||Average Weight (lb)||Average Weight (kg)|
|Heavy Breeds||1,400-2,700 lb||635-1,225 kg|
|Light Breeds||800-1,500 lb||363-680 kg|
|Ponies||200-1,500 lb||91-680 kg|
Horse Weight Chart Based on Breed
Different horse breeds tend to gain various weight. On average, a fully grown adult horse weighs around 1100 pounds.
Here’s a chart that shows the weight differentiation of various breeds. So, you can identify them with ease.
|Horse Breed||Average Weight (lb)||Average Weight (kg)|
|Andalusian||1,200-1,300 lb||540-590 kg|
|American Warmblood||1,210–1,320 lb||550-600 kg|
|American Saddlebred||1,000-1,200 lb||450-540 kg|
|American Quarter||950-1,200 lb||430-540 kg|
|Arabian||790–990 lb||350-450 kg|
|Ardennes||1,540–2,210 lb||700-1000 kg|
|Belgian||1,750-2,200 lb||800-1,000 kg|
|Cleveland Bay||1,210–1,540 lb||550-700 kg|
|Clydesdale||1,540–2,210 lb||700-1,000 kg|
|Cob Horses||990-1,200 lb||450-540 kg|
|Connemara Pony||640–860 lb||290-390 kg|
|Dales Pony||880–1,100 lb||400-500 kg|
|Danish Warmblood||1,200-1,400 lb||540-640 kg|
|Dartmoor Pony||440–710 lb||200-320 kg|
|Dutch Warmblood||1,210–1,320 lb||550-600 kg|
|Draft||1,540-1,870 lb||700-850 kg|
|Eriskay Pony||660–880 lb||300-400 kg|
|Exmoor Pony||660–880 lb||300-400 kg|
|Fell Pony||770–990 lb||350-450 kg|
|Fjord||880-1,100 lb||400-500 kg|
|Friesian||1,300-1,500 lb||590-680 kg|
|Gypsy Vanner||1,300-1,600 lb||590-730 kg|
|Hackney||880–1,210 lb||400-550 kg|
|Hackney Pony||550–770 lb||250-350 kg|
|Haflinger||770–1,320 lb||350-600 kg|
|Hanoverian||1,210–1,430 lb||550-650 kg|
|Heavyweight Hunter||1,300-1,540 lb||590-700 kg|
|Highland Pony||1,100–1,320 lb||500-600 kg|
|Holsteiner||990–1,760 lb||450-800 kg|
|Irish Draught||1,320–1,760 lb||600-800 kg|
|Lipizzaner||905-1,200 lb||410-540 kg|
|Lusitano||900-1,100 lb||410-500 kg|
|Missouri Fox Trotter||900-1,200 lb||410-540 kg|
|Morgan||900-1,100 lb||410-500 kg|
|Nakota||900-1,500 lb||410-680 kg|
|New Forest Pony||510–730 lb||230-30 kg|
|Oldenburg||1,200-1,500 lb||540-680 kg|
|Paint||950-1,200 lb||430-540 kg|
|Paso Fino||1,200-1,300 lb||540-590 kg|
|Percheron||1,870–2,090 lb||850-950 kg|
|1,100-1,400 lb||500-640 kg|
|Polo Pony||900-1,100 lb||410-500 kg|
|Ridden Hunter||990-1,400 lb||450-640 kg|
|Shetland Pony||400–440 lb||180-200 kg|
|Shire||1,870–2,430 lb||850-1100 kg|
|Spotted Pony||440–880 lb||200-400 kg|
|Standardbred||1,000-1,320 lb||450-600 kg|
|Suffolk Punch||1,650–1,980 lb||750-900 kg|
|Swedish Warmblood||880–1,210 lb||400-550 kg|
|Tennessee Walker||900-1,200 lb||410-540 kg|
|Thoroughbred||990–1,100 lb||450-500 kg|
|Trakehner||1,100-1,500 lb||500-680 kg|
|Welara||660–880 lb||300-400 kg|
|Westphalian||990–1,320 lb||550-600 kg|
How Are Horses Weighed?
You can weigh horses in four ways.
Use a livestock scale if you want precision when determining your horse’s weight. The weighing scale you see in a veterinary clinic is smaller than the livestock scale. But they have the same function.
The weight tape is like tailor tape. This tape be used to obtain an approximate weight of your horse by measuring the heart girth (barrel).
I must say that weight tape is ideal for weighing average-sized horses. You’d rather use other options for larger, growing, and smaller equines.
To estimate your horse’s weight, measure its girth and length as show in the illustration, then plug the numbers into the appropriate formula:
Adult Horse: Heart Girth x Heart Girth x Body Length ÷ 300 = Bodyweight in pounds
Yearling: Heart Girth x Heart Girth x Body Length ÷ 301 = Bodyweight in pounds
Weanling: Heart Girth x Heart Girth x Body Length ÷ 280 = Bodyweight in pounds
Pony: Heart Girth x Heart Girth x Body Length ÷ 299 = Bodyweight in pounds
Although this is not an ideal way of weighing a horse, you may use it for estimation. But there can be a disparity of 200 pounds. No one can get a specific measurement through eyeballing. Even veterinarians or expert breeders can’t do it.
Why Should We Know a Horse’s Weight?
We should know a horse’s weight to feed it with the right food quantity. Every horse needs to eat an amount of feed that is 2.5% of its body. Apart from this, there are other reasons.
Effects of Seasonal Change
It will also help you understand the effects of seasonal change. In winter, the availability of forage is low. But you must ensure that your horses get extra calories for the much-needed warmth in the cold season. Good quality hay can provide this.
There’s a high supply of hay or forage in summer. You have to prevent your horses from overeating and gaining extra fat.
For Medicine Dose
When your horse is sick, it’s under medication. Right dosing is essential; you can figure it out through your horse’s weight.
Knowing the Weight a Horse Can Carry
Note that a horse can carry 15% to 20% of its body weight. If you let it bear too much weight, the animal is at risk of lameness and soreness.
What Factors Impact a Horse’s Weight?
Kris Hiney enumerated four factors that impact a horse’s weight. This person is an equine specialist from Oklahoma State University. Here are the factors and their explanations
The potential growth of every horse depends on its genetics. Smaller breeds may have growth limitations. But nutrition and exercise can reverse them.
Skeletal disorders can get in the way of genetics’ potential. An example is a foal with bone alignment issues. It may not achieve the growth rate normal for its genetics.
It’s easy to understand why nutrition affects the weight of a horse. You can feed your horses processed feeds and supplements to gain weight. Also, you may control their weight by controlling their diet.
As a responsible owner, you must be particular with your horses’ exercises. It should be on the level that promotes muscle and skeletal development.
If your horse gets into stressful exercises, there will be a delay or restriction on its growth. Also, it may make the animal underweight.
Some may think that stalled horses are fit and in the ideal weight. It’s a set-up where horses get the right amount of nutrition. But, they may not have the chance to exercise.
It’s possible to raise healthy horses in a pasture. They have the opportunity to exercise for ideal weight. You have to oversee that they get the necessary nutrients from their forage.
Heaviest and Lightest Horse Ever
The heaviest horse that ever lived was from the 1850s. It was a Shire horse gelding called Sampson that weighed 3,360 pounds. He has a height of 7 feet and 2 inches, so he had another name, Mammoth.
Thumbelina is the lightest miniature horse that only weighs 57 pounds. When it comes to the lightest foal ever born, a miniature horse called Einstein took the title. He weighed less than 7 pounds at the time of birth.
How Much Does a Horses Saddle Weigh?
Horse saddles weigh around 10 to 60 pounds. While Western saddles weigh 25 to 60 pounds, English saddles are lighter at 10 to 25 pounds.
How Much Does a Horse Trailer Weigh?
Since there are various horse trailers, they can weigh from 2,400 to 8,400 pounds.
How Much Does a Horse Jockey Weigh?
A horse jockey must not be too heavy. The acceptable weight for horse jockeys is from 100 to 120 pounds.
How Much Does a Horse Heart Weigh?
Horses are in different forms, sizes, and weights. So, their hearts are not the same size, but it’s around 1% of their weight. The average weight of a horse’s heart is 8 to 9 pounds.
The largest horses can weigh 1,400 to 2,700 pounds, while the lighter breeds weigh 800 to 1,500 pounds. Ponies or miniature horses can weigh from 200 to 1,500 pounds. Some factors can change the common characteristics based on genetics and breed.
Nutrition, exercise, and environmental conditions can affect the weight of a horse. Disorders and illnesses have an effect too.
Do you know now why it’s important to know your horse’s weight? It’s because of seasonal change, the right dosing of medication, and the load they can carry.