Sometimes the best things come in pint-sized packages, says blogger Lila Gendal.
For the past 10 or so years I have grown quite accustomed to riding extra-large horses. My mare Valonia stands about 17.1 hands high, while my gelding Skybreaker is around 16.2 but is hugely built all around. I am fairly tall, therefore I have gotten used to these larger horses and enjoy riding them. However, this fall an adorable little 14 hand QH x Connemara stumbled into my life and I am remembering and understanding why ponies are not only precious, but worth keeping around!
Compact. For starters, everything about Chai (the new pony) seems easier because of her size. She has a short back, short neck, and short legs. Everything about her is small. It’s not hard for her to be engaged, and she knows where her body is. She rarely trips, slips, or feels out of balance. With huge horses, it seems as though they take quite a bit longer to grow into themselves and, at times, don’t feel as surefooted as the littler ones.
Good Brain. I can’t stereotype all ponies here, but from my experience as a child, and my time spent with Chai, I have noticed that lots of ponies are easy going in so many ways. She is an easy keeper who doesn’t require an enormous amount of food. She is quiet. She can be alone, or with other horses. She is very laid back, and takes everything in stride. She is a quick learner and overall she seems to be totally uncomplicated.
Athletic. Lots of good things come in small packages. This pony sees a jump and goes! I ask her to trot, and she goes. I introduce her to new jumps, whether it be inside, or out on cross-country and she is completely willing and excited to try new things. She is a powerful jumper and a good mover.
Adorable. Last but not least, ponies are just super cute. Some can be cuddly and a joy to be around. This little pony enjoys being groomed, loves attention, and cannot get enough peppermints.
So, are you a pony advocate, or not… and why?!
My name is Lila Gendal and I am 27 years old. I am from Vermont and have been riding horses since I was 6 years old. I have been eventing since I was 10. I have been riding and training with Denny Emerson for the last 7 years. My goal is to compete at the upper levels someday. I currently have a 2005 Holsteiner mare, “Valonia” (Contester X Parlona), who is currently going training level, and I am riding one of Denny Emerson’s horses, a 2005 Selle Luxemburg gelding, “Beaulieu’s Cool Skybreaker” (Beaulieu’s Coolman X Une Beaute by Heartbreaker) who will be moving up to training soon! When I am not on a horse or in the barn I am likely working in my office on what I like to call Equine Media… or social media for equestrians and equestrian websites.
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