DARTMOOR HILL PONY: CHARACTERISTICS
Height: no mare or stallion running on the commons to exceed 12.2 hands. However foals taken from the commons and raised on good pasture, may exceed this. Care must be taken that ponies thus reared and exceeding the 12.2 are not returned to the commons, as they may have lost the toughness to survive.
Conformation: A well set on head, with enough room in the gullet to allow the pony to flex at the poll without interfering with the airway. A large enough jaw and mouth to allow the pony to eat the gorse, one of the mainstays of the pony’s diet in a hard winter. A good honest head with a kind eye, preferably hunter pony type, not showing Welsh/Arab lines.
A sloping shoulder, with a good wither, and adequate length of rein.
Enough room for a saddle, strong loins and quarters, with a tail set well but not high.
The limbs must be strong, with a good flat bone, short cannon bones, not tied in below the knee, or cow hocked.
The action is long and low, with a very strong hock action, which propels the pony from behind, not a “daisy cutter”.
All colours are allowed, and the coat must be thick enough in Winter to stand the rigours of the Moor, with the mane and tail especially thick and dense.
THE OVERALL IMPRESSION IS OF A WORKMANLIKE PONY, WITH SCOPE AND STRENGTH TO CARRY A CHILD HUNTING ON DARTMOOR, AND THE BALANCE AND TEMPERAMENT TO ATTEND PONY CLUB FOR DRESSAGE, SHOW JUMPING AND CROSS COUNTRY.