The Tiniest Dwarf Horse Doesn’t Mind If He’s A Little Different

Munchie is unlike the majority of the horses at Habitat for Horses in Hitchcock, Texas. The typical height of a horse in that area is roughly 5 or 6 feet. Munchie, on the other hand, stands just 21 inches tall, or less than 2 feet.

“It’s as if he doesn’t notice or care how large they [the other horses] are,” Amber Barnes, Habitat for Horses’ adoption and publicity consultant, told The Dodo.

“He’s simply like, ‘So what you’re big?’” she says. Whatever.’”

Munchie was living in a state of neglect on a ranch near San Antonio before coming to live at Habitat for Horses 11 years ago.

“We rescued him when he was around 2 months old,” Barnes added. “He brought a family of lesser miniature horses as well as larger horses with him. In San Antonio, there was a large-scale cruelty seizure case.

When we arrived, there were numerous horses on the ranch that had passed away. As a result, it’s a tragic situation.”

After the animals were confiscated by authorities, the majority of them, including Munchie and his mini horse mom, Melanie, went to live at Habitat for Horses.

Mini horse with dwarfism staring at larger horses through a fence

Munchie gazing at the larger horses through a fence at the sanctuary | HABITAT FOR HORSES

“He was driven from the rescue [scene] on someone’s lap in the front seat of a vehicle because he was so little,” Barnes added. “He was teeny-tiny.” “It’s like having a small puppy in your lap.”

When the sanctuary staff took a close look at Munchie, they saw he wasn’t just any tiny horse – he was a dwarf mini horse. Dwarfism is a prevalent problem with miniature horses, Barnes explained, because they are occasionally inbred by careless owners.

Woman kissing mini horse on the nose

Munchie two weeks after being rescued — he was 2 and a half months old at the time | HABITAT FOR HORSES

“As a result, there are structural disparities… “This may frequently result in health issues,” Barnes explained. “It has the potential to be deadly.”

Munchie is thankfully in good health, despite having a bent “roach” back and an underbite. “When he stares at you and licks his lips, it’s actually very sweet,” Barnes added.

Two miniature horses eating grass and flowersMunchie and his mom, Melanie, eating in their pasture at the sanctuary | HABITAT FOR HORSES

Due to his dwarfism, he also has a protruding belly. “A lot of his organs are standard sized — not all of them, but they’re bigger than what would make sense in a horse his size,” she explained.

Children petting miniature horseMunchie when he was about 4 to 6 months old | HABITAT FOR HORSES

According to Barnes, none of these factors appear to have an impact on Munchie’s quality of life. Munchie spends his days eating, snoozing, and exploring his pasture, much like the other animals at the refuge. Munchie lives in a meadow with four other miniature horses, including Gizmo, who is diminutive himself, as well as goats and a pig.

Munchie also takes every opportunity for a good pampering session. “Munchie enjoys having his hair combed out and braided because he enjoys being pampered,” Barnes added.

Mini horse playing with ballHABITAT FOR HORSES

Munchie is more than just a napping and grooming horse; he’s also the sanctuary’s official ambassador, visiting schools and libraries to educate youngsters about horses and animal care. “We recount Munchie’s tale and talk about the predicament of other horses when we talk about him,” Barnes added. “He’s a good example.”

Closeup photo of mini horseHABITAT FOR HORSES

Munchie will also show the larger horses that he isn’t frightened of them whenever he has the chance, despite the fact that they are often afraid of Munchie, according to Barnes.

Woman feeding two mini-horses in pastureHABITAT FOR HORSES

“They’ll be just around the corner, and he’ll be like, ‘Yeah, yeah, give me my hay,’” says the narrator. What happened to my carrots? ‘I’m not concerned about you,’” says the narrator. Barnes stated his opinion. “However, you’ll have the same enormous horse glance at Munchie, surprised and unsure of what to do. It’s a little amusing.”

Miniature horse touching noses with another horse

HABITAT FOR HORSES

Munchie, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to take pride in his ability to terrify the huge horses; instead, he is content to be himself. Barnes described Munchie as a “funny little fella.” “He’s a pleasant, laid-back little man,” says the narrator.

Woman in wheelchair petting miniature horse

HABITAT FOR HORSES