Who’s only 17 ½ inches tall with a heart as big as Texas? Thumbelina a miniature sorrel brown mare, the world’s smallest horse, that’s who. Little Thumbelina was born at Goose Creek Farms, a miniature-horse ranch in St Louis, MO in 2001. She is so small because not only were her parents miniature horses, but she also has dwarfism which makes her even smaller that an average sized miniature horse. She’s about the size of a bulldog and has a doggy door she uses to go in and out of the stable’s office and sleeps in her very own dog house. Thumbelina also has a set of doggie doors to get in and out of the barn, too.
At first, her owner’s the Goessling’s, did not know if she was alive once Thumbelina was born. Her mother, a mini mare named Rose had had a challenging birth. Thumbelina was very small, only 6 inches tall when she was born, with her feet tucked up making it a difficult birth. An average miniature foal when born is typically 19 to 20 inches tall, so at only 6 inches tall at birth, Thumbelina was quite tiny. Upon her delivery, she was given mouth to mouth to help get her breathing and it was at that point that her owners realized that she was indeed alive. After that, she did not seem to grow very much and that is when they understood just how unusually small Thumbelina was.
Although her legs are bowed and twisted and her hoofs get frequent visits from her farrier to fit her with special orthotic horseshoes which help her walk, she gallops and bucks and does all the things other horses do. Per the St Louis Magazine interview with Michael Goessling, the adult son of the owners of Goose Creek Farms, “When she was young, she used to sneak under the fence and go pasture to pasture, getting into everyone else’s food.”
Now that she is 18 years old, she has slowed down and has retired, she is still the boss and in charge on the farm. Her owners consider Thumbelina the bossiest horse on their farm. In fact, when the people from the Guinness World Records came to the farm in 2002 to verify that Thumbelina was indeed the smallest horse ever in all recorded history, they brought along the world’s largest horse at that time and as soon as she saw him, she attacked him because he was in her pasture.
This little lady might be a boss on the farm, but she has a soft spot the kids that visited with her on her farm and those she visited when she made appearances at hospitals, schools, special camps, children’s group homes and shelters. After being certified as the world’s smallest horse by Guinness World Records in 2002, in 2007 her owners decided to turn this tiny mini-horse into a therapy horse. Per CNN, her owners decided early on to turn Thumbelina into a therapy animal. Her owners, the Goesslings’ bought her very own Thumbymoblile, a used RV that was converted into a padded living quarters for this tiny mini-horse, and drove her to all 48 contiguous states stopping along the way to visit with children in hospitals, schools, shelters, and camps. She had visited with cancer patients and cancer patients. She loved to visit with the kids and help bring a smile to their faces.
Thumbelina may be tiny, but this sweetheart is a mighty soul packed into only 17 ½ inches of the most adorable tiny hooves on the planet. She rules her roost by keeping all of the other mini-horses in line on Goose Creek Farms, while sometimes sampling some of their dinner along the way. In the many miles her tiny hooves has traveled in her many miles across the US, she has brought as many smiles to the many people she has met. She may be tiny, but Thumbelina’s heart is mighty and she loves to share a smile along the way.
Learn more about power hoof trimming Hoof Boss & Hoof Boss Mobile sets for equine at: //mybosstools.com/applications/horse-hoof-trimming/