*Please note that the book recommendations mentioned in this post were not solicited. But this blog does have an affiliate relationship with The Big Book of Miniature Horses book publisher, Trafalgar Square Books. When you click on this blog’s link to Trafalgar Square Books (see the photo of the woman reading a book to a horse on the right-hand side of your screen or at the bottom of all the blog pages) and purchase an item through the link, this blog will receive a much-appreciated portion of your purchases at no extra cost to you.*
On the heels of attending a miniature horse driving clinic and contemplating adding a mini to my herd, I wanted to do some reading about them. So I scoured used book ads and explored library offerings. I ended up buying The Big Book of Miniature Horses and borrowed four other books through my local library’s interlibrary loan system.
Of all the books, I best liked The Big Book of Miniature Horses by Kendra Gale (2017) and the Miniature Horse: A Veterinary Guide For Owners and Breeders by Rebecca L. Frankeny, VMD (2003). In reading about minis, I am most interested in the differences and similarities between keeping big horses versus little ones. Those two books gave me the best ideas on those fronts.
For example, Dr. Frankeny, in her Miniature Horse: A Veterinary Guide For Owners and Breeders, notes that “. . . abnormalities such as navicular disease, osteochondrosis (OCD) and laryngeal hemiplegia (roaring) that are widespread in the large horse population are rarely, if ever, seen in Miniature horses. On the other hand, hepatic lipidosis, a form of liver failure that can occur during times of food deprivation, is very rare in full-sized horses, but quite common in Miniatures.” Who knew?
Of particular interest to me was the author, Kendra Gale, writing a chapter on beginner driving with minis in The Big Book of Miniature Horses. She notes that “. . . many people have the mistaken impression that because Miniature Horses are small, they don’t need to take the time and care in training that they would with a 1,000 pound horse . . . You absolutely can get hurt, and perhaps even more importantly, so can your horse . . . It is completely unfair to your horse not to treat him with the same respect just because he is less likely to inflict serious harm when he gets scared.” Something for me to keep in mind, for sure.
Gale also noted the importance of training/mentoring when learning to drive and that you don’t necessarily have to stick with an instructor who only drives miniatures. Driving principles are the same across the board and can be taught by any experienced instructor, according to Gale. Another good point.
I’m still trying to gather more miniature horse/donkey/mule resources to read. If you are involved with minis, please let me know if you have favorite mini resources whether educational websites/places to buy mini equipment and harnesses. I would love to read more, whether in book format or online!
*On a different horse-related note, I am still working on composing a list of equestrian Black Friday deals. Many deals are not announced until right before Black Friday or even on the actual day so my post may not go out until the early morning hours of November 25th.
But, I am noticing that some stellar deals are going on right now ahead of Black Friday, including an eye-catching offer from Dover Saddlery of a free $50 Dover Saddlery Digital Promotion Gift Card with purchase of $150 or more. Use Promo Code: CMHOLLY. The fine print on the ad announcement says “excludes purchase of gift cards, Tailored Sportsman, Hit-Air and Kerrits. Limit one per household, per day. Gift card will be sent via email by 11/24.”
While Dover Saddlery specializes in English Riding, there are plenty of general horse care, grooming and stable equipment items that will appeal to all horse folks. Visit Dover Saddlery at http://www.doversaddlery.com. Please note that The Backyard Horse Blog is not affiliated with Dover Saddlery in any way. I just wanted to pass on this offer for readers benefit.*