Video: Dulmen Pony (dulmen)
2023 Author: Molly Page | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 22:49
The Dülmen pony is the only surviving pony breed in Germany. Another breed was the Senner from the Teutoburg Forest, which is now considered extinct. Dulmen is a very ancient breed that was bred in the vicinity of Dulmen, as evidenced by historical references dating back to the XIV century. The exact origin of this breed is unknown, although it is likely that they arose from ancient primitive horses (tarpans) and inherited their primitive qualities.
Photo © Dietmar Rabich
These ponies lived in large wild herds around Westphalia, but during the 19th century, when the area was divided, the ponies began to lose their original habitat. Today, there is probably the only wild herd (300-400 heads), which belongs to the Duke of Kroy. He was the first to bring these ponies back to their homeland in the middle of the 19th century.
The surroundings of Dyulmen are varied in their landscape: from forests to swampy thickets, which provides grazing horses with everything they need. These ponies live a wild life, find their own food and fight diseases. As a result, those members of the breed that survive are the strongest and most resilient, and therefore this breed is resistant to disease and harsh living conditions. Only in severe winters, ponies are additionally fed with hay, straw and silage.
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Once a year, on the last Saturday of May, the herd is driven away, the foals are taken away, and then sold at open auctions, while the mares are returned to their habitats with one or two stallions. Stallions live in the herd from May to September. The herd itself is divided into family groups consisting of mares and their offspring, each of which is led by an alpha mare.
Dyulmen ponies are good-natured, friendly horses and are great ponies for children. They are also used for harness and field work. These ponies are unpretentious in food, cheap to operate, hardy and very patient. They can live all year round in a stable or in the open air, without the need for cultural pastures.
The height of the dulmen ponies is from 122 to 135 cm.
The color is mouse, black, dark bay or red. White markings are not desirable.
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In exterior, these ponies inherited the primitive features of their ancestors: a slightly large head (relative to body size) with a straight or slightly concave profile; small ears; narrow, medium-length neck; a dark strip runs along the ridge; the croup is muscular, well developed; short legs with firm, rounded hooves. The mane and tail are lush, there are no brushes.
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