Horses and Ponies

Arlo is an 18 year old Welsh cross pony. He is on a very restricted diet, so he can only eat what we feed him. Please don't feed him anything extra. Picasso is a 12 year old pony. He lives at the farm with Captain Jack, his best friend. Picasso gets to entertain our visitors all day in his pen, while Captain Jack gets to give pony rides. Captain Jack is a 10 year old Morgan cross. A Morgan is a horse breed and when crossed with a pony breed it creates a perfect-sized animal. Not as small as Arlo and not as big as a horse!!

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A female horse is called a filly, once older it's a mare.

A baby is a foal for its first year of life. When it is one year old, it becomes a yearling.

A male horse is colt when it is young, at four it becomes a stallion.

A castrated male is a gelding.

A group of horses is called a herd.

Horses' hooves grow approximately 0.25 inches in a month, and take nearly a year to grow from the coronet band to the ground.

Mr. Ed, the talking equine star of the 1960s television series, was a golden palomino. He learned an enormous amount of tricks for his role, including answering a telephone, opening doors, writing notes with a pencil, and unplugging a light. Apparently, Mr. Ed would occasionally have a fit of temper, as befitting his star status, and would stand stock still, wheezing and refusing to move.

7.1 million Americans are involved in the equine industry as horse owners, service providers, employees and volunteers. 941,000 people participate in horse racing in either a professional or volunteer capacity. 1.9 million American own horses. In addition to the people actually involved in the industry, tens of millions more Americans participate as spectators.

The left side of a horse is called the near side and the right side is the off side.

A horse's teeth can be used to estimate its age.

Horses are traditionally measured in hands, this was originally the width of a man's hand and has been set at 4 inches. A pony is measured at below 14.2 hands (below 58 inches). And a horse is 14.2 hands and above (58 inches and above). A horse or pony is always measured at the withers, which is the top of their back where it meets the neck, it’s the tallest stationary point of their body.

A horse has approximately 205 bones.

There are more Quarter Horses than any other breed. The oldest of all breeds is the Arabian. The Shetland is the smallest breed of ponies. The Shire is the largest of all horse breeds.

The Horse is a large land mammal notable for its speed, strength, and endurance. Horses are members of the Equidae family, which also includes zebras and asses. Like all equids, the horse is extremely well adapted to traveling long distances with great efficiency and to surviving on a diet of nutrient-poor, high-fiber grasses. The horse is an intensely social animal, forming strong associations with members of its herd and possessing a keen ability to recognize subtle social cues. These instinctive behaviors form the basis of the horse's ability to bond with and obey a human trainer.

The horse's influence on human history and civilization make it one of the most important domestic animals. Horses were domesticated in Eurasia around 6,000 years ago. Throughout much of human history, they have provided humans with mobility and have served in agriculture, warfare, and sport. Today domestic horses are found throughout the world, with a total population estimated between 60 and 75 million. So-called wild horses, such as those found in the American West, are actually feral animals, free-living descendants of domestic horses that escaped or were turned loose.

The wild ancestors of the modern horse evolved for millions of years in North America. They spread to other parts of the world by traveling southward to South America and by crossing land bridges that connected North America to Europe and Asia during the ice age. Horses vanished from both North and South America in a wave of extinctions that occurred near the end of the Pleistocene Epoch, about 15,000 years ago. They were not seen in the Americas again until 1494, when Italian explorer Christopher Columbus transported them on ships from Spain on his second voyage to the New World.

Quotes to live by:

"If you want a kitten, start out by asking for a horse" - Anon

"The horse is God's gift to man" - Old Arab Proverb

"Show me your horse, and I will tell you who you are" - Old English saying

"The one great precept and practice in using a horse is this, never deal with him when you are in a fit of passion." Xenophon, The Art Of Horsemanship, 400 BC

"I think it is so necessary to teach children to love and understand animals. I have always said, to be a good sport, you must have a a big heart. The ability to ride will give them poise and confidence, and the capacity to take the rough with the smooth---including spills---and not to be thrown by any of it, I hope will remain with them through the rest of their lives." - Alda Hopkins Clark (Martha Clark's grandmother and avid horsewoman).