Miniature Horse: The Miniature Horse traces its history back to the 17th century in Europe, where they were bred as pets and as a curiosity. Less refined Minis were imported to America in the 1930's and employed as “pit ponies” working inside mines.
The Falabella is the best known miniature today, distinguished by its horse type conformation and character. There are two registries in the United States for Mini Horses, the American Miniature Association (AMHA), founded in 1978 and is dedicated to establishing the Miniature horse as a distinct breed of horse. The second is the American Miniature Registry (AMHR). The AMHR is a division of the American Shetland pony Club and was established as a separate registry in 1972. In the AMHA, the mini cannot exceed 34 inches in height.
While mini horses are the size of a very small pony, many retain horse characteristics and are considered "horses" by their respective registries. They are found in all common horse colors.
The oldest living horse on record was a mini named Angel,
affected by dwarfism this horse lived to be over 50. Dwarfism is a concern within the miniature horse world. Dwarf horses, while often setting world records for size, are not considered to have desirable traits, generally have incorrect conformation, and may have significant health problems.
The current record holder for the world's smallest horse is also a horse affected by dwarfism, Thumbelina, who is fully mature but stands 17 inches tall and weighs 60 pounds.
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