Shetland pony

Here’s a hairy little pony with a big heart! Ranging in size from 70 to 112 centimetres (7 to 11 hands), these pint-sized equines are very hardy in order to survive the harsh conditions of their home on the Shetland Isles.

For centuries on Shetland, this pony was used to cultivate the land, carry heavy loads of peat and seaweed, and for transport. Today, the Shetland is popular as a child’s riding pony and for carriage driving. There are two distinct types within the breed – a heavier boned draught animal with a powerful chest and shoulders, and a lighter riding pony with a high tail carriage and pretty head.

Shetland’s have a docile nature but are intelligent and, despite their small size, can hold their own with bigger ponies and horses, and can be very cheeky!

Scientific name
Equus cabullus caballus
Family
Equidae
Order
Perissodactyla
Fast facts
For their size, the strongest of all the horse breeds.
The breed is over 2000 years old.
Their thick mane helps to protect their eyes, head and neck in harsh weather.
Conservation status
Least concern