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Calculating Body Weight

Measurements of weight and/or Body Condition Score (BCS) are useful in monitoring a horses condition and determining nutritional needs. 

A weight tape can be purchased from your local farm supply, feed store or online store. The “tape” is a flexible piece of material with incremental measurements of approximate weight printed on it. These are placed around the girth to determine approximate weight. If you do not have access to this a simple piece of string can be used:

  • Place the string around the girth, mark it and measure out how long it is using a regular tape measure.

  • Then place the string at the point of the shoulder and measure back to the buttock.

  • Using the calculations listed, you can estimate your horses body weight.



Pounds body weight = heart girth (in)2 x length (in) / 280



Pounds body weight = heart girth (in)2 x length (in) / 301


Mature Horse:

Pounds body weight = heart girth (in)2  x length (in) / 330



Pounds body weight = heart girth (in)2 x length (in) / 299


A body condition score is a helpful way of gaging and monitoring weight changes – there are a number of reference charts available online. Choose one that you like, and be consistent. Here are a few options:

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