Monday, February 13, 2012

Dales Pony

The Dales pony is a native British breed that has never been wild, being bred by man in captivity. It has descended from the Celtic pony, like many other British breeds. It also has other breeds mixed into it.

Long ago, the Fell pony and the Dales pony were pretty much the same breed. The Fell pony came from the west of the Pennine hills and the Dales from the east(the Pennine hills stretch through the northern half of England)Back then, both ponies were called Pennine ponies.

Dales ponies, known for being both good trotters and for their ability to pull heavy loads, were used by the army to carry ammunition to soldiers as well as to pull mine carts full of lead or coal. Also, it was ridden by farmers. Dales ponies can run a mile in three minutes and can carry up to 220 pounds.

The Dales pony is strongly built and has sturdy joints. Its hooves are hard and have bluish tint to them;feathers grow on the fetlock. Its face shows alertness, its ears are short, and its eyes are bright. The mane and tail are wavy. It can grow to be up to 14.2 hands tall. The pony can be either black, brown, bay, or grey.

The Celtic pony was crossed with a Friesian-Ariegeois cross bred horse that was brought to england by the Romans. In the 1800s, a Welsh Cob was added to the mix, and finally, Clydesdales were added for size.

Dales Pony's Uses Today
The Dales pony is mostly used as a trekking pony or a driving pony.