What can you do with a small pony?

So, I’m currently borrowing one of my instructors small ponies as a companion for my horse. It seems the pony has decided I need to be her owner. My instructor and this pony have a mutual dislike and at her place she’s impossible to catch. She’s near the bottom of the herd and frequently escapes the pasture to go all over (and then is hard to catch). She’s not a good kid pony because she bucks. She has had a couple of foals but it seems like small ponies are an experiment that didn’t pan out so she’s not even being used as a broodmare.”

However, at my place she is top horse. She leaves her food to come hang out with me. She meets me at the gate, nickers every time she see me, and except for the first day, is ridiculously easy for me to catch. Yesterday when she escaped I didn’t even have to get a halter…just called her over and she followed back to the proper pasture.

I’d keep her, except I’m at a loss as to what I would do with a small pony……anyone have any ideas?

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She doesn’t like children.

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You might check out out Mini Horse show lists of classes for ideas. They have in-hand trail classes with obstacles of all sorts. They jump, they weave, cross obstacles and other things. Keeps the pony mentally stimulated they say.

Teaching her tricks might be fun, just be choosy. Think of “other” uses she might put them to! Ha ha

Driving might be a possibility if she is willing. Being aged, she might be more accepting of it. Starting with ground driving, to take her out and about visiting the neighborhood. Check out the Driving Forum for older posts on starting a pony, what is involved. Does take time to make the voice commands SOLID, develop your working relationship, before considering actually putting a cart on. So not a lot of cash investment beyond some sort of surcingle, long lines and a long whip (takes the place of your legs) to touch her with, plus time.

Does sound as if she REALLY likes you!

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She’s not a mini….she’s a registered Welsh pony. Driving is an option….my instructor does have a mini that drives so she is familiar with it but doesn’t have any driving equipment for her size.

Picture of the hellion (her filly in the back).

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I’ve always wanted a small (11-12H) pony to drive and do classical in-hand/long lining work. Maybe when I retire.

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Hug her and pet her and squeeze her and love her and caress her and name her George? :laughing:

I mean, does she really have to have a purpose? Lots of us own or have owned equines whose only purpose was to provide the pleasure of their company and the stress relief of barn chores and grooming.

In case anyone is too young to get the reference:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ArNz8U7tgU4

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Oh, she definitely appreciates all that.

But she needs something to keep her in shape and occupied. She’s getting fat.

There is a decent competitive driving division in the Welsh Pony world and section As (which it sounds like she is) are often great at driving. Where are you in the world? Chances are there is a WPCSA* for your geographic region in the US.

*Welsh Pony and Cob Society of America https://wpcsa.org/

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I don’t know if you have access to trails near you, but would she/you like doing something like just going for walks on trails? Or is she good about being ponied off another horse so you could do a trail ride? (I’m assuming she’s too small for you to ride?)

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I’m unsure if my current horse would appreciate ponying. She’s blind in one eye and even in pasture she tends to avoid large group runs. I could technically ride her….but I’d be very uncomfortable about it…and she bucks so she doesn’t appreciate it either.

She would probably like just walking on a trail….but it’s too hot for that currently.

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Ride her! If you’re small enough but uncomfortable about the way it looks, then just ride her at home when no one is watching. I’d at least give it a try until you can figure out if she bucks because she’s uncomfortable, or because she figured out how to dislodge children.

Otherwise, you could lead her while hiking/walking, do in-hand dressage or jumping, or just limit her food intake more to keep the weight off.

I have a 12 hand pony. He’s very fun to ride, and I occasionally do. He’s also very huggable.

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Look into International Horse Agility Club. They have monthly agility competitions from beginner on up. My pony and minis love it and you can work on it at your own speed. Driving is fun too.

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I’m not “small enough” I’m just barely light enough, my feet will drag and I can’t get my leg on her. And she bucks with adults (just not effectively), in addition to with children.

If she likes to follow you sounds like liberty and teaching tricks could be fun for her and keep her mind active. Agility/Obstacle Training, obstacle relays, extreme obstacle challenges and in-hand trail seem fun too. Search those on youtube with “pony” and enjoy the cuteness.

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in hand trail obstacle training, driving ( as mentioned) walking companion with her own backpack. Use her as a mini-draft service animal. She can pull a cart or tote panniers when you do farm maintenance.

Same as I do with my 12 hand pony. I give him kisses, teach him commands, braid his mane, long line him everywhere, he drags my “arena”, use him for sledding in the winter, quick bareback rides to get the mail. Driving isn’t his thing. They have super cute pony stuff as well.

My kids ride him but he’s still my pony.

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@2DogsFarm can advise you on driving a tiny pony --her Bugs is a dream!

For your pony, I’d say put her to work. You can acquire a harness for less than $100, then knock together a “stone boat” (you’ll find it on the WWW, YouTube, whatever) and let her pull you around the yard. Put sides on the stone boat and use it for picking up sticks, trash, garden refuse. Put a hay bale on it, and take kids for a ride.

I built one using landscape timbers (8’ x 4") and 1x6 scrap wood. Kids drove the Percheron colt around until it fell apart when he was 22. image

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Ohh didn’t think of a stone boat for the acreage work! good idea

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Soesn’t like children? That’s a perfect A/AA division pony hunter right there! (I’m kidding. :wink: Maybe. Most of them don’t seem to like kids very much. )

Start by long lining. You can ground drive her all over the place that way. If thar goes well & you want to try pulling something you can even drop a singletree to something as simple as an old car hood. That’s actually a good way to move round bales around the farm.

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I’ll poke around at the horseman’s market next week. There is usually at least one booth there that sells driving equipment. If I’m going to keep her long term my husband requires her to be more than just a mouth to feed.

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