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In my experience, the biggest downside to weight tapes is that they tend to be impossible to find when you want them. Therefore, I rely more heavily on body condition scoring. The Henneke Body Condition Scoring System is simple and widely used, allowing for comparisons between different observers. Use your eyes and a firm touch to assign a score to each of the six body parts mentioned below, add up the numbers, and divide by six. That is your horse’s Henneke Body Condition Score.
Ask your veterinarian or another experienced horse person to double check your findings the first few times you use this system, and then evaluate your horse monthly so you can address weight gain or loss before it gets out of hand.
Dr. Jennifer Coates