miniature vs. pony
OK. So what makes a pony a pony and a mini a mini? I'm not concerned about show rules, but actual breeding. I've been told lots of different things, but I know I've seen many miniature horses that just look like ponies to me (short legs, round belly) and ponies that look more like horses (welsh ponies, hackneys). If I see one without anyone telling me what it is, how do I know?
The way I've always defined it was that a mini is below 36" and is in the proper proportion; in other words, not a dwarf. A pony is above 36" up to 14.2h.
A mini is supposed to look exactly like a horse, except a smaller version.
Wikipedia:The AMHA(American Minature Horse Association) standard suggests that if a person were to see a photograph of a miniature horse, without any size reference, it would be identical in characteristics, conformation, and proportion to a full-sized horse
A pony, although horse looking, has different qualities. Again, wikipedia: A pony is a small horse (Equus ferus caballus) with a specific conformation and temperament. There are many different breeds of ponies. Compared to horses, ponies often exhibit thicker manes, tails and overall coat, as well as proportionally shorter legs, wider barrels, heavier bone, thicker necks, and shorter heads with broader foreheads
mini's are a small version of a horse, and a pony has different conformation than a horse.
I was once told that a miniature had to have "horse" colouring also. But that seemed right out the window to me.
Oh really? I actually never saw a mini class at shows, so I always just thought that minis were small horses.
Unless they are really minis and they look like ponies, I think Shetland ponies look like minis. Or is there such thing as a mini pony?
I would assume that most mini's are shown at something more breed specific, which is why we wouldnt see them at a normal show. Seems like they have every type of class at their Worlds show!
It looks like even mini people arent sure as to wether the breed should have pony or horse characteristics, so I am going to assume like some other breeds (like qh's) there is always going to be an arguement on which is the best way to go with the breed in the future.
Using the same Miniature Horse article from Wikipedia that I used earlier: While technically any member of Equus caballus under 14 hands 2 inches (58 in; 150 cm) is termed a "pony," many breeds, including some miniature breeds, actually retain a horse phenotype and their breed registry therefore classifies them as horses.
Just to add to the confusion...think about this...if two registered paint horses are bread...the foal is registered pain, even though the foal may be a solid color.
So, I guess two registered minis could produce a "tall" offspring...or one with poor conformation...and it is still a "registered mini."
I also know that there are indeed "class b" minis that are over 36". Not sure how tall they can be.
It is kind of confusing.
I found this in reference to Class A and Class B minis
The American Miniature Horse Association, founded in 1978, lists two classes of miniatures, class A being 34 inches tall or less, and class B ranging from 34 to 38 inches tall. In order to appear in horse shows as a miniature, the animal can be no taller than 34 inches, which is eight and half hands. Today, the AMHA registers about 140,000 animals around the world. Their breeding goal is to develop the smallest possible horse that maintains the correct conformity and the smallest of the breed is considered more desirable.
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