All About Horse Age and Lifespan

Horse walking in field.
Horse walking in field. Pixabay

Just like people, thanks to a better understanding of health and medical care, horses are living longer than ever. Not that long ago, twenty-five years old was old for a horse. The life expectancy of horses has increased, largely because we take better care of them. Most of us would like our equine companions to stay with us as long as possible, and a common question is 'how long will my horse live'. Here are facts about horses' age and how you can care for your horse for optimum...MORE longevity.

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    WADEBRIDGE, ENGLAND - MAY 24: A week old shire horse foal walks with her mother Orla at Cornwall's Crealy Adventure Park on May 24, 2013 near Wadebridge, England.
    Mare with foal. Matt Cardy/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    What is the average lifespan of a horse? According to the OMFRA it may be longer than many people think. With better care horses are living longer than ever, just like people. You can expect a healthy horse to live over twenty-five years.

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    Two older horses with hollow backs.
    Sway or hollow backs can be caused by poor condition and age. Image Credit:Jose A. Bernat Bacete /Moment Open /Getty Images

    How old is the oldest horse? How about the oldest pony or donkey? Here is a look at the ages of some of the world's longest-lived equines.

    Do you know a horse, pony or donkey that is in its thirties, forties, fifties or even sixties? Tell us about the oldest horse you know.

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    Pregnant mares and foal
    Horse with well sprung barrel from having foals. Image Credit:Dorling Kindersley/Bob Langrish /Getty Images

    If you own a mature horse, it's wise to watch it for signs of aging, so you'll know when to start treating it as a senior citizen. Not all horses age at the same rate, and not all will require the exact same care. Here are the signs of aging you'll need to watch for so you can provide your horse with the very best.

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    Several charts and calculators have been created in an attempt to compare horse to human age. That's difficult to do, as the maturation and aging rate of horses and humans is very different. However, just for fun, here is one example of a horse to human age comparison chart and an explanation of why comparisons are not precise.

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    If you don't know your horse's date of birth, one way tell its age is by its teeth. Telling a horse's age by looking at its teeth is not exact, but it will tell you the approximate age. Horses' teeth grow and change almost all its life--until the tooth itself stops growing. Learn how to tell a horse's age by its teeth by the shape, angle and length.

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    Horse owners often wonder what they can do with their horses at any given age. What can you do with a foal, weanling, yearling or two-year-old? What should you be training them? And of course, what can you do with senior horse? Is it still okay to ride or drive an older horse? Here's an overview of what you can do with your horse from birth through to maturity and senior citizenship.

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    How old should your horse be when you buy it? What is the best age for a beginner's horses? Should you buy a young or older horse? Find the answers to your questions about the age of your first horse.

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    Senior horses are often the best horses for beginners, and they only require a bit of extra maintenance to provide many years of enjoyment and companionship. Caring for Your Senior Horsedescribes what to watch for, how to feed a senior, what kind of workload a senior horse can manage, how to shelter your senior horse and more.