updated 06/07/2010 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 06/07/2010 AT 01:00 AM EDT
Einstein doesn't think he's small. He bucks and jumps like any frisky foal. But Einstein, born April 22 to two miniature horses, is believed to be the world's smallest equine. At 14 in. high-about two-thirds the height of a typical newborn minihorse-he needed help reaching his mom to nurse. "I don't have any reasoning for his size," says his breeder Judy Smith. "It was like roulette where the genes lined up."
Though he's grown only an inch and a half (and can now nurse on his own), Einstein is already a pretty big deal. A YouTube video of his shaky first steps has garnered nearly a million hits. And when Smith hosted an open house at Tiz A Miniature Horse Farm in Barnstead, N.H., more than 4,000 people from across the country lined up in the rain. At home "he loves our little boxer-they kiss noses," says Rachel Wagner, Einstein's owner, who may show him in minihorse competitions. But at 50 lbs., their pet dog is "too heavy to really play with him."
Einstein's size is not a defect. "His ancestors may have been smaller," says vet Jacqueline Bartol, who adds that he is healthy but will most likely not grow as tall as his parents. While he may not set off a tiny-horse trend (they can cost up to $100,000), Einstein has inspired some envy. Says visitor Laura Chapin from Colorado: "I could have stuck him in my purse."
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