They were in the Shetland Islands, looking at the history of the breed. They were selectively bred to be able to pull 1 tonne loads of coal, and carry adults. The presenter had a ride. It was wonderful to see. I get so much stick for riding mine... 'up yours' to all the nay sayers!
I am 5'2 or 3. My traditional shetland is full up to height. She takes a 5'3 rug, and a cob sized bridle and girth. When I ride her, my legs are 4 inches above the bottom of her tummy! All people see are her short legs. They dont notice the body of a 13.2/14hh pony attached to them! My friend has a shetland x stallion. 10.2hh. He carries her for hours and miles without flagging, trots sideways back into the yard after an hour or two hacking! People have called the RSPCA on her.
1. to provide a model for companies producing tatty ornaments 2. to provide the "December" photo in pet/pony calendars and 3. to draw punters in to buy overpriced jam & eggs from theroad side adjoining the paddock
I know soo many underused/underappreciated shetlands. They get bought as companions. These are working animals fgs. They have a bad reputation, because people treat them like pets and they become spoilt and nippy. It makes me really cross!
I'm 5'6" and ride our 12.2 Welsh sec b, without a saddle as it's too small for me and I've had a few comments along the lines of aren't you a bit big/heavy for him, isn't it cruel?
I always take the time to explain that they were bred for hiking up and down the hills and carrying much heavier stuff than me and the alternative is for him to loiter at home getting bored because the dc's have lost interest. They never seem to be convinced.
I need to be more psyched up to ride him than my 16.1 TB - he's strong, round and very determined!