A Welsh pony is a horse breed native to the UK, created by mixing the solid Celtic ponies with Arabs and other breeds of horses later imported into the UK. Welsh ponies are actually divided into four types, or parts, depending on the details of their build and height. All Welsh ponies are known to be reliable, strong and solid, and very gentle, although they can be stubborn, thanks to their intelligence. Many children learn to ride a Welsh pony, and the horses are also used for running, hunting and dressing by riders of all skill levels. Sometimes called “little horse with a big heart,” the Welsh pony is a classic and beloved horse breed in the UK and beyond.
The roots of the Welsh pony lie in Celtic ponies, which varied wildly throughout the UK. The horses developed very solid, surefooted builds adapted to a variety of terrain, along with a high level of native intelligence. The horses were trained for use in battle and as pets by the early British, and imprisoned Roman settlers, who strengthened the breed by introducing Arabian bloodlines. Until the mid-twentieth century, most British farms retained a Welsh pony to work around the farm, pulling a small wagon or trap, and teaching children how to ride.
The first type of Welsh pony, Section A, is the Welsh Mountain Pony. This is the smallest of the Welsh ponies, measuring under 12 hands in height with a small head, wide forehead, and bright eyes. The Welsh Mountain Pony also has straight legs and strong, dense bones, and clearly shows its Arabic influence. The next part, Part B, is the Welsh Pony, which measures between 13.2 and 14 hands, depending on whether it is sentenced in the United States or the United Kingdom. The Welsh pony is a slightly larger version of section A pony, but is especially bred for riding.
Section C contains the Welsh Pony of Cob Type, a heavier and compact pony measuring under 13.2 hands. Cob Welsh Ponies are known for their gentleness and powerful, lightly feathered rabbits. These ponies are usually used in driving and are an excellent family companion. The last section, Section D, covers the Welsh Cob, the largest type of Welsh pony. The Welsh Cob is a larger version of the Section C pony, but is also known for its track covering advances, as it was often used in military applications along with much larger horses it had to keep up with. Welsh Cobs used for hunting and driving, are known as very loyal horses.