Texas A&M University

Body Condition Scoring

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1: Poor

Horse extremely emaciated. Spinous processes, ribs, tailhead, tuber coxae, and ischii projecting prominently. Bone structure of withers, shoulders, and neck easily noticeable. No fatty tissue can be felt.
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2: Very Thin

Horse emaciated. Slight fat covering over base of spinous processes, transverse processes of lumber vertebrae feel rounded. Spinous processes, ribs, tailhead, tuber coxae and ischii prominent. Withers, shoulders and neck structures faintly discernable.
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3: Thin

Fat build up about halfway on spinous processes, transverse processes cannot be felt. Sligh fat cover over ribs. Spinous processes and ribs easily discernable. Tailhead prominent, but individual vertebrae cannot be visually identified. Tuber coxae appear rounded, but easily discernable. Tuber ischii not distinguishable. Withers, shoulders, and neck accentuated.
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4: Moderately Thin

Negative crease along back. Faint outline of ribs discernable. Tailhead prominence depends on conformation, fat can be felt around it. Tuber coxae not discernable. Withers, shoulders, and neck not obviously thin.
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5: Moderate

Back level, Ribs cannot be visually distinguished but can be easily felt. Fat around tailhead beginning to feel spongy. Withers appear rounded over spinous processes. Shoulders and neck blend smoothly into body.
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6: Moderately Fleshy

May have slight crease down back. Fat over ribs feels spongy. Fat around tailhead feels soft. Fat beginning to be deposited along the side of the withers, behind the shoulders and along the sides of the neck.
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7: Fleshy

May have crease down back. Individual ribs can be felt, but noticeable filling between ribs with fat. Fat around tailhead is soft. Fat deposited along withers, behind shoulders and along the neck.
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8: Fat

Crease down back. Difficult to feel ribs. Fat around tailhead very soft. Area along withers filled with fat. Area behind shoulder filled with fat. Noticeable thickening of neck. fat deposited along inner thighs.
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9: Extremely Fat

Obvious crease down back. Patchy fat appearing over ribs. Bulging fat around tailhead, along withers, behind shoulders and along neck. Fat along inner thighs may rub together. Flank filled with fat.
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Henneke 1983 EVJ

Drawings by Courtney Brake