Foal Anatomy

Anatomy / Pedigree
March 10th, 2020

Foals are born rather mature as they can stand and eat within a few hours of being born. The anatomy of a foal at birth is that their legs are long, and their bodies are small. This means that a foal’s legs are very close to that of their adult length.  Their body, including the ribcage/torso are smaller in comparison, the neck short, and head small.  These will change appropriately as the foal matures, but the leg length grows a great deal less than the rest of their body.

An interesting aspect of growth is that when the foal is born they have a short neck. Foals rely on a suckling reflex in their first few hours after birth to gain vital nutrition through nursing the mare meaning their bodies and height are built for nursing. As they grow, their neck will also grow in length, but it can be challenging to reach the ground and graze on grass at an early age.     


Photo courtesy of Kathy Landman