Single Horse... Solitary Confinement?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Redcatcher, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. Redcatcher

    Redcatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2010
    At My Desk!
    What is everyone's thoughts on keeping the solitary horse? I know it depends a lot on the horse but I would think environment would play a role. I am concerned since my horse's pasture looks out in the woods. No other horses in sight, or animals (other than occasional wildlife) and no people around to watch, and no activities. He is unrideable and with the really cold weather we have been having, I have not been spending much time out there. I am not sure about getting a goat. My fencing would not hold a goat in and I really do not want to have to worry about its care and feeding. Another horse is out of the question. I can afford one horse but not two (and that includes a pony or donkey)..Plus I only have the one stall. Horses are very social animals and it is giving me the guilts. Is this worse than keeping a horse 24/7 in a stall but can see and hear other horses?
  2. Appytaz

    Appytaz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 18, 2008
    Central Florida
    I think you will be surprised to find out how little the mini donkeys eat. I would definately look into a buddy. I have a mini donkey with my horse and I really can not say the donkey's feed is even noticable in my budget!
  3. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    A mini horse or donkey eats very very little, maybe a cup pf grain 2x daily and all my animals squeeze their butts into ONE stall, even though they have others to choose from. I would find him some kind of companion, it is in their nature to be in a group of some sort, both mentally and physically necessary.
  4. Redcatcher

    Redcatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2010
    At My Desk!
    I thought minis are not supposed to be kept with full sized horses. My horse is 15.2 and weighs about 1200 lbs. He is not a small horse.
  5. michickenwrangler

    michickenwrangler To Finish Is To Win

    Jun 8, 2008
    NE Michigan
    Your horse will become unhappy and jittery if left alone for extended time. A mini donkey eats very little. Donkeys come from desert/scrub areas and really can thrive on almost nothing.

    There are of course stories of horses who live alone and are "fine" but they'll be a lot happier if they have another equine.

    ETA There is a mini donkey at the stable I board at who is kept with full size horses.
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2010
  6. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer Premium Member

    May 11, 2010
    What about a cow?
  7. Weewanona

    Weewanona Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 1, 2007
    Wilburton, OK
    I have 3 Paint mares. Heights are: 14 hands (with long feet - yes, I know [​IMG] there is a height requirement for Horse status. She was injuried as a long yearling and didn't reach her expected height of 15.2 [​IMG]) and her 2 daughters: 15 & 16 hands.

    In the pasture with them are 2 mini geldings at 34 & 36 inches. All have been pastured together 4+ yrs with no issues. They all eat from the same round bale at the same time. Being horses; there is the natural pecking order and shifting of places when the 'higher up' decides your spot looks better. So everyone just shifts over.

    Now, all that said, I would not try to feed grain to a full size and a mini from the same feeder in a stall situation. That brings a whole new dimension into play.

    Definately look into a donkey companion. Hardy animal that truly does not take a lot of expense to care for. Your horse will be happier and healthier - which could actually make it even cheaper for you in the long run. [​IMG]
  8. welsummerchicks

    welsummerchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2010
    I think it would be a really terrible thing to do to a horse. Horses are herd animals, to isolate them is as cruel as isolating any intelligent animal that lives in groups. I don't really feel cows or other animals do anything for a horse.

    Also, quite a few horses won't tolerate it. They will try to find others of their own kind. They will be nervous, at worst, tearing around screaming all day, running the fence line, breaking through the fence to go find other horses.

    Horses are expensive animals, if one is barely able to afford one, most likely, it's not going to turn out well.

    You could consider getting two miniature horses, and dividing your one stall in half.
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2010
  9. PortageGirl

    PortageGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2008
    Portage County, Ohio
    Bah. depends on the horse. Plenty do fine alone, they're not as much herd beasts as cows or goats are, and if you can spend extra time with it it helps. Not all horses like goats so don't worry bout that, (I had one that hated my goats). Donkeys, mini or otherwise are very cool, friendly and personable, super easy keepers so not much cost involved. Consider it, you would probably enjoy having them, though I loved my goats too, plus milk and cheese is good too! I had a dog that all horses loved, and another that not many cared for, but dogs are good company too, at least part time. You do what you have to and horses do adjust.
  10. Kansaseq

    Kansaseq Prairie Wolf Farm Asylum

    Feb 12, 2009
    NE Kansas
    How about a couple of hair sheep? Easier to confine than a goat, and no shearing. My old boss had a herd of sheep and his single horse considered them part of his herd.

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