How Much Does a Miniature Horse Cost?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 15, 2018

A miniature horse is commonly kept as a household pet while others may keep one to roam around on a farm.  With a lifespan that can last more than 35 years, a miniature horse can live even longer than the average sized horse.

With similar characteristics of a larger horse, a miniature horse can be playful, loveable and even can be used as a service animal for the blind.  As of today, however, there is no recognized breed-wide standard but separate registries have emerged, each with their own standard.  Some registries will recognize the size and/or coat coloration, while others may reject a miniature horse because of its physical conformation.

The cost of a miniature horse will depend on the age, quality, the breeder, geographical location and if there are any inclusions.

Miniature Horses by newagecrap, on Flickr
Miniature Horses” (CC BY 2.0) by  newagecrap

How much does a miniature horse cost?

On average, a miniature horse is going to cost anywhere from $550 to as much as $25,000+.  An older horse without any registration papers is usually going to cost less than one with all of the paperwork from a champion bloodline.  Champion breeds, for instance, can cost more than $5,000.  However, according to our research, most quality miniature horses on the classified ads we saw were in the $500 to $3,800 range.

AMHA.com says the average miniature horse can cost anywhere between $1,000 to $200,000, the costs will be determined by the size, bloodline and the show record.  The smaller and more conformed the horse is, the more it’s going to cost you.

Miniature horse overview

Miniature horses can commonly be found via four options:  through a breeder who specializes in miniature horses, a private farm owner who may have a few on the farm, a rescue group, similar to that of a household pet, or at an auction.  A rescue group and auction often tend to have the lower quality, whereas your private breeders, while pricier, may have your higher quality horses with a champion bloodline.

Today, there are two larger miniature horse registries:  the AMHR (American Miniature Horse Registry) and AMHA (American Miniature Horse Association).  The AMHR, a subsidiary of the American Shetland Pony Club, will register a miniature horse in two divisions.  The “A” division will recognize horses that are less than 34 inches, while the “B” division will recognize horses in the 34 to 38-inch range.  These horses will receive a permanent registration after they reach three years of age.  The AMHA is a stand-alone association and will only recognize horses shorter than 34 inches or less.  Unlike the AMHR, the AMHA will issue registration when the horse reaches five years old and will only accept horses that have parents with AMHA registrations.

The average miniature horse can weigh anywhere from 50 to 100 pounds.

When healthy, it has a lifespan of 20 to 30 years.

What are the extra costs?

A miniature horse’s diet will usually consist of grains and hay.  On average, each horse can consume up to two bales per month or up to five pounds per day, depending on their size.  With the average bale costing $3, plan on spending $10 to $25 per month for their food.  On this forum thread at miniaturehorsetalk.com, one forum member, who was extremely frugal with her choices, paid $300 per year to take care of her horse.

Since miniature horses require proper boarding, this will be required if you do not have the adequate space to house one.  The average horse boarding location can charge anywhere from $100 to as much as $300 per stall, per month.  The same can be said about those who don’t have a fenced in yard or an adequate stable for shelter.  Fencing in a yard and adding a shelter can get well into the thousands, depending on the setup you build.

Like any pet, a horse will have to receive routine vaccinations and even vet checkups to ensure that their health is up to par.  Since the vet will more than likely have to come to your home, a vet checkup can start at $55 and can be even more expensive in certain parts of the United States.

If the horse is going to be purchased outside of your area, transportation fees are going to have to be considered.  Since these horses will have to be transported by car, fees can range anywhere from $200 to as much as $1,000 depending on how many miles are going to have to be driven.

Expect for corrections, shoeing is often done like that of an average-sized horse.  Shoeing, on average, can cost about $20.

Tips to know:

If grass is available, these horses tend to graze on it all throughout the day, making them fantastic lawn mowers.  If there is no grass available, it is best to supply the horse with hay or grain as mentioned above.

Check with your local zoning laws as many cities do have ordinances forbidding these types of animals.

Children may be able to ride a miniature horse if trained properly; however, the child shouldn’t weigh more than 70 pounds.  Since the horse often has the inability to drive, owners advise against it.

One acre can accommodate about four to five miniature horses, and while they may get along with larger horses, it’s advised they have their own pasture to avoid injury.

Carefully watch what your horses eat as they are prone to overeating.  Avoid feeding them people food and keep a close eye on their diet.

How can I save money?

Be sure to talk with a handful of breeders in your area.  Many breeders can be found online through classified ads, but if you find a horse online, don’t buy without seeing it first.  This ncsu.edu article, for example, says to show up a few minutes early to see how the horse truly acts.  You may find some calm down their horse before the potential buyer shows up.  When you show up, don’t just pet it; ask to groom it, walk it around the pasture and tack them up to see how he or she reacts.


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  1. ted stephens (41649,  Kentucky) paid $ and said:

    how much would it cost for a mini horse and transportation here

    Was it worth it? Yes

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