The Asturian, also known
as the Galician, is an ancient breed of pony originated from the
Asturias region of Northern Spain. The exact ancestry of the Asturian
is not known, but it is thought to have developed through crosses
between the Sorraia of Spain and the Garrano of Portugal, while
also tracing back to the ancient Celtic Pony. These ponies are hardy
and frugal, being able to survive in areas where other horse and
pony breeds would perish. Over the years, the breed has faced possible
and imminent extinction.
Recently, however, their
plight came to light and societies were formed to help protect them.
The Asturian Ponies have a quiet and biddable temperament and are
very useful for riding,
pack, and trekking. They tend to have a small, heavy head, a thin
neck with an abundant mane, low withers, a deep chest, straight
shoulders, and sturdy legs with strong joints and very hard hooves.
Generally they exhibit
straight backs with a rounded barrel and a sloping croup with a
low set tail. Usually they are
in color with minimal white markings on their face and legs. They
usually stand between 11.2 and 12.2 hands high.
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