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A bit or advice on horse sizes please

6 replies

SecondMrsAshwell · 18/03/2016 13:28

I'm writing a play where one of the characters keeps several horses - this is mentioned in passing when she tells one of the others that she has a shetland pony stallion who is enamoured of a much larger mare. She finds it funny that he shows off to his lady love who looks at him as if he's mad as a lightbulb.

How tall would a Shetland stallion be and how tall would a mare have to be for it to be quite a funny contrast?

I hope this makes sense.


OP posts:
wetotter · 18/03/2016 13:39

Shetlands range from about 7 to 11 hands.

Go for something over 15 hands for a clear mismatch.

But stallions need special handling to keep them safely (as they are stronger) and securely separate from mares. So make sure your owner is experienced and has extensive facilities at her yard.

Biggles398 · 18/03/2016 22:13

This was actually a common occurrence at a friend's yard. Her Shetland stallion was constantly showing off to the only mare on the yard, who was way too big for him. I don't think she even realised his existence :)

PageStillNotFound404 · 19/03/2016 19:46

Standard Shetlands are usually between 8-10h but those in the know usually refer to their height in inches (unlike for virtually every other breed), so around 32" - 40".

The bigger you make the mare the more humorous the contrast. If your character is an average-sized adult woman keeping her other horses for her to ride, it wouldn't be unusual or unrealistic for the mare to be 16 - 17 hands.

SecondMrsAshwell · 23/03/2016 13:38

Thanks all

That's just the info I need. I get really irritated when writers don't do any research and just take a guess.

the bit I'm writing is based on a vague childhood memory where we went to a horse rescue centre and there was a Shetland stallion there who clearly thought he was the business. The punchline to the story is "that sounds just like Henry." So, wetotter I can embroider a bit on the facilities and how hard he tries to get round to the mares.

Thanks again

OP posts:
hollinhurst84 · 23/03/2016 13:39

My mare is obsessed with ponies Confused
She's 16.2hh and wants to mother anything under 13.2hh

MrsCaecilius · 24/03/2016 08:42

You'll sound like you've done your research (to horsey people) if you give the mare's height in hands (17hh is a big horse) and the Shetland in inches (40.5 inches is reasonable).

Good luck!

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