Short Horses Anonymous! Little horses, honies, and ponies alike!
Alright, short equine owners, come on out and make yourselves heard! I'm tired of all these 17hh+ monsters, where are my fellow "compact car" owners of the horse world? Sure my mare may not require a ladder to mount, but I love her anyways!
So, what would YOU consider a short or small horse to be, in hands? Would you consider your horse short, medium, or tall? Then to compare, how tall are you?
I always get comments on my "little mare", and I always have to kind of chuckle, because while my mare measures at BARELY 15hh (barefoot she may be under that).. she also weighs 1250lbs. But hey, "big things come in small packages", right?
EDIT: Also, feel free to post pics of your "vertically challenged" horses!
Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!
I pray every day that my horse will not grow any taller. I like him just where he is. I'm pretty sure he's 14.1 still, though I haven't ever sticked him, just a tape that may or may not be completely accurate, but that I choose to believe. No matter what, I'm still going to convince myself he's 14.1. I like ponies. I like not having a ten foot drop to the ground when I dismount, I like being able to see dirt on his back, and I like that we are both short and therefore match.
I love my 14.3 3/4, 1100 lb. "hony"! She's the best little mare and I've had so many people tell me not to ever sell her, which I wouldn't do anyway. Since I couldn't choose for 2 horses in the poll, that's the one I voted for. My second horse is 15.3 3/4 and pretty big bodied and solid. I am only 5'6", so I don't really need a big (as in tall) horse anyway. I've seen pictures of myself on 17h horses and I actually look kind of short.
I think my little haflingers are perfect for my 8 year old daughter and I. I'm only 5' tall as an adult and had a 16.3 tb when I was a kid. I loved that horse but we did get lots of comments on how big he was or how small I was. To me it was normal until I started riding smaller horses. Now I like them better as long as they aren't narrow. Definitely didn't see myself ever changing "camps" Most of mine now are about as wide as they are tall. hehe. I have a rule when I buy a horse...If I can't get on them bareback with the swing up mount, they aren't for me. lol. I love being able to just hop on any time and hate needing a mounting block or help to get on bareback. Riding isn't all work for me anymore- I like to have fun sometimes too and I have more fun with smaller horses.
I'm currently riding a 13.2 Welsh. He's made me realize that I loff the little guys! My baby is a Welsh/Thoroughbred cross and I'm hoping that he stays a large pony, but wouldn't mind if he ends up a small horse/hony. For me, at 5'3, anything under 15.2 hands is the perfect size. Been there, done that with the 16.3 and 16.2 hand horses and I'm over it!
it's not the edge of the earth, but you can see it from here
Well, I've got one 16h, and one 15.2ish. Those are the "big 'uns." The rest are 15.1 and under. Mature heights 14h-15.1. I aspire to have a farm full of colourful cobs by the time I retire. Nothing over 15.2, and most as wide as they are tall. (just like me!)
He's 14.3. Was 'sold' to me (leased, but still) as 15.1. That was with the famous Ayerab measuring stick. Honestly, his breeder never had a real stick until it became clear that he was going to be approved RPSI for the Sport PONY Book She then went out and bought a regulation stick and everyone lost almost a hand. She was using the weight-tape method, not *trying* to lie or cheat. She was pretty shocked.
I'm only 5'4", and when I get to my goal weight, there should be no reason at all why cob sized critters aren't ideal for me. The older I get, the more I appreciate them. I used to loff a draftX type. And certainly you have way more time to give aids, change position etc. Heck, even more time to catch yourself when they spook--the leetle guys tend to sit-n-spin right out from under!
Both of mine are 15.3ish TBs but they look like completely different horses. The mare is long-necked, finely built and a bit swaybacked from age and a couple of foals and she looks much smaller, maybe around 15 or 15.1. But she did measure 15.3 in her CHSA inspection so there is no question of a mistake. I'm 5'4" and my leg goes almost down to the level of her belly.
The young gelding is much more robustly built, his neck ties into his withers much higher up and he is built more uphill. To me, he looks over 16 hands but he sticks at 15.3. There's a good 3 or 4 inches between my leg and his belly.
My barn buddy and I had a good time playing with measuring our four horses one afternoon. Actually her two are around 15.3 too and she doesn't believe the mare is the same size as her gelding, either.
Well I have a range. One of my riding horses is 15.1 tall and about 15.1 wide! He's a stout percheron/cross that the NYPD gave to us. They had him on the force for 9 years. He'll go through anything and ONLY I ride him. He's the true definition of a one person horse. I love this horse as Just he and I can go out anywhere and have a blast together. He fits a draft tree saddle, even my 18.3h Clydesale (also an NYPD retiree) does not fit a draft tree saddle.
Now "normally" I have giants, even the babies, BUT the orphan colt we rescued last year in late December at 6 days old, Well he's hovering in that LOW 12 hand range. I am Praying he gets bigger. I have ridden ponies as short as 13.2 but I really want him to get 14 hands. I keep saying "he's just a late bloomer, he's just a late bloomer). I am only 5'5 and with a very short leg I fit smaller best. PJ is now officially smaller than all of my 2008 foals.
If PJ does not grow I will make him a driving pony.
I'm 5'10" and while I'm mostly riding a horse that is over 17 hands right now, that's not generally the case. I'm happy on anything over about 13.2" as long as the horse is stocky or strong enough that my weight is not too much for it. Most of my favorite horses have been in the 15-15.2 range.
First, I'm 5'2" or 15.2hh and 115lbs. I ride horses that are 17.1hh, 15.3hh, 14.3hh and 44 1/2". So I definitely have small, medium, and large, maybe even super sized!
The horse I ride the most is the 15.3hh one though and I consider him to be about average since he's a quarter horse like your maresie. He's also a big boy and built like a brick $hit house at 1200lbs. Even though he's a decent sized boy, he's what I'm most used to since I've had him for going on 17 years now. That said, after riding him, it's easier for me to step up in size vs step down. My balance isn't the greatest and the smaller horses/ponies make it tricky at first.
People comment that he's such a big horse, but they haven't met the 17.1hh horse yet. So to my non-horsey neighbors, he's big, but I don't see him that way and that's the same for the 17.1hh. I'm just so used to them.
Ideally, I'd really like a 13.2-14hh hand pony or "hony". Easier to mount.
Last edited by amdfarm; Dec. 3, 2008 at 06:50 PM.
I'm 5'5" and my pony is a 13.3 hand Fjord. I used to have a 16.2 hand QH, so it was hard getting used to a pony. But now I LOVE it! She's a stocky thing, takes up my leg good. But she's got a short neck, so sometimes I think I look a little tall on her. But I don't care.
I really don't know where to vote. I have many horses and I ride a 14.2 hand Morgan/Paint. Do I think he's short? No! I'm 5'4" but when trying to SELL a horse, anything in the warmblood world is a hard sell under 16.0 hands. So the answer then to me is "I consider anything under 16 hands to be a short horse". Maybe not too short for me, but it seems everyone buying wants over 16 hands. Rarely do I get an email saying "I'm looking for something 15.0 or 15.1". I think twice in my lifetime.
Maria Hayes-Frosty Oak Stables
Home to All Eyez On Me, 1998 16.2 Cleveland Bay Sporthorse Stallion
& FrostyOak Hampton 2008 Pure Cleveland Bay Colt www.frostyoaks.com