Our Massive Real World Equine Reference!
[ INDEX ] Equine Type: Horse Breed: Shetland (Shettie) [ PREV ] [ NEXT ]
The Shetland Islands are a group of small islands off the north-east coast of Scotland. The islands are stormy, and forage is not plentiful; so the ponies there developed extreme hardiness, and their size decreased to make the best use of what resources they had. Their thick coats give excellent protection against the nearly ceaseless wind of the islands where shelter is rare. Shetlands are the smallest natural equine breed, standing between 7 and 10.2hh. Although they are small, they are quite strong. The Shetland Islanders have ridden them and used them for pulling carts for centuries, and for a while, Shetland ponies were used as "pit ponies" in England, used to pull carts of ore from mines. The Shetland makes an excellent starter pony for young children, partly because of its size, and partly because it will not tolerate bad behavior on the part of its rider. Author Norman Thelwell's wonderful books about children and their adventures--and misadventures--with Shetlands are beloved and so comical precisely because they are, in so many ways, so true. Shetland ponies come in a very wide variety of colors and patterns.
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