Pony or Rice Horse is a horse that has a small size. Depending on the context, a pony is usually defined as a horse that is below the approximate or actual height of a regular horse or small horse of a certain conformation and temperament. There are many different types of ponies. Compared to other horses, ponies often exhibit thicker manes, bushier tails and bodies, as well as proportionately shorter legs, wider barrels, thicker necks, and shorter heads with wider foreheads. .
The word pony comes from the old French Poulenet, which means a young, immature horse, but this is not the modern meaning. Unlike foals, ponies remain small as adults. Pony is often distinguished by a stocky body, solid bones, rounded shape and well-developed ribs. They have short heads, large eyes and small ears. In addition to being smaller than horses, their legs are proportionately shorter. They have strong nails and grow a heavier coat of hair, seen in a thicker mane and tail as well as a very heavy winter coat.
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Characteristics of Pony
Pony breeds have flourished all over the world, especially in cold and harsh climates where strong and sturdy working animals are required. They are very strong for their size. Like the Connemara family of ponies recognized for their ability to carry a full-sized adult rider. A pony can also carry heavy loads beyond itself. Some types of ponies are able to pull loads significantly greater than their own weight, with larger ponies able to pull loads comparable to those pulled by a full-size regular horse, and even very small ponies able to pull as much as 450 percent of the weight. their own body.
Generally, ponies are considered intelligent and friendly, but are sometimes described as stubborn or cunning. Highly trained ponies are perfect for children learning to ride a horse. Larger ponies can be ridden by adults, as they are relatively small. In the current official definition, a pony is a horse less than 14.2 hands (58 inches, 147 cm) tall, but some impose heights that range from 14 hands (56 inches, 142 cm) to 14.3 hands (59 inches). , 150 cm).
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History of Pony in the world
The pony was originally developed as a domesticated animal adapted to the harsh natural environment, and is considered part of the “design” subtype typical of Northern Europe. indicates that large numbers of wild horses have contributed to modern domestic pony mating. Domestication of horses probably first occurred in the Eurasian steppes with horses between 13 hands (52 inches, 132 cm) to more than 14 hands (56 inches, 142 cm), and as horse domestication spread, male offspring from native stallions continued to be bred with horses. local wild.
The domesticated ponies of all matings were originally developed primarily from the need for working animals that could meet local transport and transport needs while still surviving in harsh environments. The usefulness of ponies was noted by farmers who observed that ponies could outperform ordinary horses on small farms. In the 20th century, many types of ponies had Arabian and other bloods added to make the smoother ponies suitable for riding.
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