Is my horse pregnant or fat??

Aug. 15, 2018, 09:09 PM
Took in a rescue horse 3 months ago, she was underweight and had strangles and I was told she was around two years old (which I do believe) the girl I got her from bought her at an auction 3 months before me, after she was cleared of strangles and I put weight on her I cut her feed way back to a maitenence feed but I feel like her belly keeps getting bigger??? Could she be pregnant or just fat?? Girl I got her from said she didn’t think so



If she’s pregnant, she may be too far along to ultrasound well (at least to see the fetus). However, the only way to tell is a rectal palpitation and ultrasound.

It is possible she has a lot of worms so I’d do a fecal egg count and see what that shows. I’d rule out worms first and go from there.


I think all of my horses must be pregnant. :slight_smile:

Can you take a picture from the side? That picture doesn’t really show enough to make a guess. It looks like her rib cage to me.


The internet is the worst pregnancy predictor out!

Two better ways:

Ask a Vet to check her out (good option)
Wait until you see feet (bad option)

Seriously, if you think there is a possibility of her being pregnant please get her vet checked, then you can make sure that her and her and a potential baby get the best possible care.


“Fat” and “pregnant” are not mutually exclusive. She could be both, or neither. Only your vet can tell for sure.



I would get her palpated. Better safe than sorry. Mares in foal require vaccinations at certain months in their pregnancies, and if she is in foal, your vet needs to give you an appropriate diet recommendation.


Me too!
& they are all geldings! :lol:

@Missey please do get your vet to verify pregnancy.
Well worth the cost to make sure your mare gets cared for properly.


Blood tests are pretty reliable at various stages of pregnancy, Palpation and u/s are not always reliable, depending on the stage. Call your vet to schedule bloodwork.


When I was a teen I volunteered at a petting zoo. Children were constantly asking why the goats had such big bellies, and the parents would tell them that they were going to have babies. As far as I know, none of the goats in the pen had ever laid eyes on an intact buck, much less any other parts of their anatomy.

1 Like

I have an appt with vet in 2 weeks… and i HATE to wait that long, my anxiety is killing me!! If she WERE pregnant id assume shed be around the 7 month mark?? it just seems her belly came out of no where, she has been wormed once a month for the past three months, so i doubt thats it, shes on safe choice maintenance and orchard grass hay and some pasture with some supplements

Wormed not worked**

A horse at the stable where my barn is just produced a surprise foal. Total surprise—they arrived at the barn and there he was. They had no idea. The mare in question was thin when she arrived not quite a year ago, got fat as they fed her, and they put her on a diet when she got a bit too “fat.” Fortunately it all seems to have come out ok and both are doing well.


Well, good to have the vet check. Underweight horses sometimes have unusual shapes as they regain weight. It takes time to rebuild the muscles in the abdomen and back that may have atrophied in starvation mode. And if she had ever been used as a brood mare it is possible that she may have a little “baby belly” look to her even when not pregnant. I have two former broodmares - a TB and mini - both are obviously former broodmares compared to my two maiden mares.

This was her a month ago or so


shes only around age two according to her teeth…I doubt shes had a foal before?? But another unusual thing I haven’t noticed is her in heat in the past three months…maybe its a coincidence, I have only had one foal before about 8 years ago, so not a whole lot of experience with that

But as I mentioned, when I got her on May 8th 2018 she had a strangles abscess, so my thinking is that if she were pregnant she would have aborted?? But maybe not, and she was thin, but not emaciated, this picture was her spine when I got her


:no: Sheesh, no wonder so many people grow up asking overweight women “so when are you due?” :frowning:

1 Like

This is incorrect information ^^^^. You can get a blood test, also US and rectals are not always accurate.


Sorry I missed the fact that she really is two years old; I thought you said you didn’t believe that.

Well…will be good to find out one way or another. I would not assume that she would have aborted if she were thin; animals are pretty amazing that way.

I’d still love to see a side shot like the one from two months ago, even though I realize that it might not be conclusive to judge from a photo.

This is her today, doesnt look big from the side, but her belly sticks outward not down, at least right now