The horses are one of the best companion animals for the human being. All horses are not equally important and useful for everyone. People usually select horses based on the size, color, breeds, usefulness, availability, and ability of pleasure. The small horse breeds are most popular as pets. Heavy horses are used for drafting and pulling cart or caravan; medium horses are used for racing, eventing, dressage, equestrian sports, and small horses are mainly used for a pet, source of pleasure and companion animals for older and disabled persons.
What is a Small Horse Breeds Called?
Horses are classified according to the height of the body. The height of a horse is measured from the ground up the wither. Wither is the junction between neck and dip for the saddle. The small horse breeds range from 20 inches to 57 inches (4 hands to 14.2 hands), medium horses range from 57 inches to 64 inches (14.2 hands to 16 hands) and large horses range from 64 inches to 72 inches (16 hands to 18 hands). The small horses are hardy, strong, and can work more than their size. They can be in any color, based on origin, geography, and breed characteristics.
1. Noma Pony
Noma Pony is one of the rarest horse breeds of the world which originated in Aichi Prefecture of Japan. This breed is known to be the smallest horse breed which is only 40.2 inches high (10.1 hands). The breed originated from a Mongolian horse breed and also had the bloodline of Thoroughbred horses. The Noma Pony was used as a pack animal in WW-II due to its strong and stout body with weight-bearing capacity. They are widely used as saddle horses for children.
2. Small Horse Breeds: Guoxia
It is believed that Guoxia horses were found in China 2000 years ago. Guoxia is one of the smallest horse breeds of the world which originated in Debao, Jinxi, and Tianyang district of China. It is one of the native horse breeds of Old China. The horse is only 40 inches in height. Guoxia had a small head, short neck, small ears and straight back. They may be roan, bay or grey in color. Guoxia is very good for driving or riding for children.
3. Shetland Pony
Shetland pony is one of the smallest horse breeds of the world but sometimes considered as the strongest horse breed than many draft horses. They can carry weight twice their body weight. The Shetland pony originated in the Shetland Isles of Scotland and they are capable of staying in the harsh environment of Isles. The Shetland pony is 42 inches in height. They were widely used in coal mining areas, agriculture, and pulling carts. They are intelligent, easy to train, excellent for child racing, driving, and pet or companion animals.
4. Miniature Horse
Miniature horses are becoming popular day by day throughout the world. They vary in size and shape in region to region. Miniature horses are the smaller version of the original horse breed. The average height varies from 34-38 inches. They are widely used in racing, driving, pet animals, companion animals, pulling carts, jumping, and showing.
5. Small Horse Breeds: Falabella
The smallest horse breed of the world, Falabella originated in Spain from the Andalusian horse and first registered in Argentina in 1940. The name comes from Juan Falabella, height from 21-34 inches which is smaller than any miniature horse. Falabella is only a smallest horse breed that can be bred naturally. They are excellent choices for children driving. They are very gentle, docile, hardy, and can sustain more than normal horses. The interesting fact is that they have 17 thoracic vertebrae and ribs instead of 18.
6. Icelandic Horse
The strong, robust, and compact Icelandic Horse originated in Iceland. The horse is 3 inches lower than the normal horse. The average height is 56-57 inches so that they are ideal for saddle fitting. The horse is larger than the ponies and their legs are shorter. The Icelandic horses are widely used as sheepherding and control or manage animal flocks.
7. Fjord Horse
Fjord horse is one of the smaller horse breeds of the world which originates in Norway. The average height of Fjord is 54 inches that are 6 inches lower than the normal horse. The fjord is one of the oldest horse breeds, used in mountains and agricultural fields. The horse is widely used to pull tourist coaches as they are gentle and easy to ride.
8. Class B Kentucky Mountain Horses
Class B Kentucky Mountain horse breed originated in Kentucky, USA. The horse is 11 inches lower than the normal horse and the average height is 49 inches. The horse is very popular with beginners, young riders, and bigger kids. The horse is very gentle, intelligent, calm and quiet. The horse is not Class “A” that is why it is called Class “B”.
The Haflinger horse originated in the Haflige province of Austria and northern Italy. The horse is 3 inches lower than the normal horse and the average height is 56-57 inches. The horse is intelligent, strong, compact, and as well as beautiful. The Haflinger horse is an excellent family horse as all family members can ride it. Haflinger is famous for its wonderful personality and temperament.
10. Yonaguni Horse
Yonaguni is also one of the most endangered horses of the world which originated in Japan. At present only 200 horses are found on the northern island of Japan. It is thought that around 2000 years ago the horse came to Japan from Korea. The average height of Yonaguni is 44 inches (11 Hands). The horse is extremely hardy, intelligent, docile and has a wonderful personality.
The Concluding Remarks on Small Horse Breeds
Small horses are very popular throughout the world. They can be used as pet animals, companion animals, kids, and young riders. There are few smallest horses that are extremely endangered in the universe. As a horse lover, the knowledge of these small horses will help you to rethink. You can choose as a pet or companion animal, you can rescue a horse, or even bred an endangered species.