Common Name: American miniature horse
Scientific Name: Equus caballus
At the zoo: Pearl (female, 28y) - she lives with a miniature donkey named Bob and a miniature zebu named Zeus in a Mega Mini enclosure at the western end of the zoo.
Hay, grasses, and grains.
Miniature horses are stout-bodied and come in a range of colours and sizes. A horse must be less than 86cm from the base of the mane to be considered miniature according to the American Miniature Horse Association.
The American miniature horse breed comes from many sources. Royalty in Europe bred small ponies as pets, mining operations used them as pit ponies in the mines, and some Shetland pony breeders selectively bred for their small size in the 1960’s. Today, the miniature horse is a proud breed and a popular hobby horse due to its small size, gentle disposition, and desire to please.
A Miniature horse can be trained to work as a service animal just like a guide dog!