Difference Between Horse and Pony

We all once in our life have seen a horse. They are being used and domesticated since the beginning. Some of us even have confused them with a pony. This is common mistake people tend to commit even today.

Both horse and pony have unavoidable similarities that who does not know about them will consider them the same animals. But that’s not really the case.

Horse vs Pony

The main difference between horses and ponies is in their height and another physical factor, the height of horses, are longer due to their longer head, neck, and legs, whereas ponies are shorter due to their short legs, head, and necks. They also have different life spans. Most horses are friendly, but their nature depends upon their breed, while ponies are mostly stubborn, smart, intelligent, and cunning. Horses have faster metabolism as compared to ponies that have a slower metabolism. Also, the horse takes more time in the healing process when compared to ponies, as ponies have leukocytes that help them heal faster.

Horse vs Pony

A horse is a domesticated mammal belonging to the taxonomic. They are taller. They have finer and shinier hair on their body. They are friendly and intelligent animals with strong bodies. They are domesticated from the starting of time.

Earlier, they also used it as means of transportation. The uses have been changed. They are fed grass mostly. Pony is just like a horse, a mammal but has a short height. They have a different physical appearance than a horse.

They have a great healing capacity. They have a cunning and smart nature. They can also be stubborn at times. They also have longer life when compared with the horse. It is easy to keep a pony as they can easily be fed.

Comparison Table Between Horse and Pony

Parameters of ComparisonHorsePony
HeightThey are tallerThey are Shorter
Life spanIt is ShorterIt is Longer
HairThey have Finer hair  They have thicker and harsh hair
Healing capacityIt is SlowerIt is Faster
HoovesThey have Bigger hoovesThey have Smaller hooves

What is Horse?

Horses are four legs, one tail, long neck-head animals that are domesticated. A horse-like human cannot breathe through their mouth; they can only breathe with their nose.

Horses have a special ability to fall asleep while standing. They can relax while standing as well. They have 10 different muscles present in their ears. They can see even sideways without turning around, meaning they have a vision of 360 degrees, but they cannot see behind and in front of their noses.

The age of horses can be guessed by looking at their teeth. They can be trained for many activities as they are intelligent. The earliest of them are believed to be 50 million years long. They like to be social and have friendly nature. Due to this, they were/are used for all the following purposes:

  1. War: they were used in wars earlier; they were used in World War I and World War II. Even in Indian history, kings used to fight while riding on horses.
  2. Agricultural work: they were also used for activities related to the agricultural sector. They have high endurance and power making them ideal for helping humans in agricultural work.
  3. Leisure and sports: nowadays horses are mainly used as a means of leisure and playing sports.
  4. Transportation: they were mainly domesticated for transportation purposes as it was easier to ride on them while carrying stuff along.

What is Pony?

Ponies have short four legs, a tail, a short neck, and ahead. They are more than 150 breeds of ponies all around the world. Most of them are generally easy keeping and tolerating. They are stockier, live in harsh and bleak areas, and cannot walk properly on uneven ground.

They have a thicker tail. They are mainly used for training the children for riding. Foals are young ponies. They are stronger than horses. They can heal quickly as they have leukocytes in their body.

They should be feed with utmost attention as they can get weight soon that can lead to obesity which is the problem of concern. They are preferred more because they need less food and can be used for the same activities as a horse.

They can also be extremely annoying when threats or danger are felt. When it comes to uses, they are used for riding, transportation, heaving agricultural activities; they also provide a friendly and secure environment.

They live longer. The reason behind this is unclear, but many believed it is due to their short size and height.

Main Differences Between Horse and Pony

  1. The main difference between a horse and a pony is in their height; horses are taller than ponies. They are mostly over 14.2 hands, whereas ponies being shorter, are always under 14.2 hands.
  2. Both of them have different types of coat and hair, hair of the horse is much finer and thinner whereas the hair of pony are thick as, like their coats they are rough and has a harsh texture unlike horse with softer and smoother. 
  3. They have a different head neck. Horses with taller height have a long neck and head, while ponies have a shorter head and neck. They have similar eyes but different ears. The ears of the horse are comparatively longer than the ears of ponies that are shorter.
  4. In terms of the body, the body of a horse is much proportionate and well-balanced, while the body of a pony is broad and stocky, and they have around a chest.
  5. Horses are taller, and the main reason behind this could be their taller legs, whereas the shortness of ponies is due to their short legs with hardy hooves at the end.
  6. The type of feeding in the case of horses depends upon their type of breed as there are large species of horses whereas, in the case of pony, they can be feed easily with mostly anything as they are easy keepers. 
  7. The bone of a horse also depends upon its breed, it can be thick or thin, but the bones of ponies are always thick and dense.
  8. A different breed of horse has a different temperament. They have been full of patience and anger, too, whereas ponies have a temperament of patience mostly. They are friendly, intelligent, and cunning.
  9. Ponies mature faster in comparison to horses; horses take time to get mature. 
  10. They also differ in terms of life span; horses live shorter as compared to ponies that have a longer life span.
Difference Between Horse and Pony


Hence, you now can easily distinguish between a pony and a horse. Despite the above differences, they are similar as both of them belong to the same species, Equus caballus, and the same tree; they have the same physical appearance with four legs, a tail, hairy body, both of them are extremely strong with excellent strength, both of them have a same digestive system, they mostly eat same things, they are among the most hard-working animals, both of them are extremely beautiful and loved by many.

Both horse and pony are admirable due to their nature. They are used for several purposes, and people have a very emotional connection with them.


  1. https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/abs/10.1098/rspb.1938.0029
  2. https://www.vetequine.theclinics.com/article/S0749-0739(04)00095-1/abstract
  3. https://europepmc.org/article/med/4026024
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