The aims of this study were: 1) to compare the tape weight and associated weight-estimation formula to evaluate weight gain in pregnant mares, and 2) to develop a mathematical model to estimate the weight of pregnant mares using body measurements. Thirty-four criollo-type mares were evaluated every two weeks during the middle and late pregnancy. The mares were weighed on a livestock scale, and we estimated body weight using tape weights and an associated body-weight estimation formula. Also, heart-girth circumference (heartgirth) and abdominal circumference were measured; the latter at the 12th intercostal space (12th ICS) and 18th rib (18th Rib), to use in a mathematical model to estimate the weight of pregnant mares. Observations were divided into three periods of pregnancy: 5th to 7h month, 7th to 9 h month, and 9th to 11th month. Mares in late pregnancy showed an increase in actual weight and an increase in 12th ICS and 18th Rib measurements. Tape weight and body-weight estimation formula underestimated the weight of pregnant mares. However, the regression model using heart-girth circumference, 12th ICS, and 18th Rib measurements showed high correlation (r2 = 0.87, P<0.001) with actual weight. Finally, the alternative methods usually used in horses are not accurate to estimate body weight in pregnant mares. In conclusion, the regression model Y=-540.143 + (heartgirth x 3.068) + (12th ICS x 1.278) + (18th Rib x 0.944) can be used to estimate body weight in pregnant mares from the 5th to 11th months of pregnancy.
Vieira, P. S., Nogueira, C. E. W., Santos, A. C., Borba, L. de A., Scalco, R., Brasil, C. L., … Curcio, B. da R. (2018). Modelo para estimativa de peso em éguas gestantes mestiças crioulas. Ciencia Rural, 48(1). https://doi.org/10.1590/0103-8478cr20160590