× Info! A minimum donation of £100 is required to rehome a foal.

Services to Pony-keepers and Others

Friends of the Dartmoor Hill Pony provides help and support to hill farmers who keep Hill Ponies on the Commons. We ensure that what we do is acceptable to, and beneficial for, Dartmoor’s ponykeepers.

For example, we provide a vehicle and trailer and collect wayward or injured ponies, organise veterinary services such as gelding young colts to give them a value so they can be kept, (at least 70 a year) take unwanted foals and ponies for homing (some 300 a year). We are also asked to apply our animal-handling skills to difficult situations, for example providing support to government departments collecting ponies from low animal welfare situations.

We have mobile equipment designed for handling wild ponies; to keep them safe while being treated…and vets!

Friends have developed a Disease outbreak Management Plan with help of the Dartmoor Hill Pony Association for ponies on the Moor. We are involved in stallion inspections alongside Dartmoor Commoners Council and Dartmoor Livestock Protection (along with a show judge and a vet) ensuring set standards for breeding stallions are met before they are put on the moor. We provide back up and support to the dedicated wonderful Dartmoor Livestock Protection welfare officer, whose number is 07873 587561 please call if you have concerns about an animal on the moor.

Foal Watch

This foal was born into the eye of the Mini beast from the east, the mother and foal have coped well in temperatures below freezing, snow and ice.

These ponies have roamed Dartmoor for thousands of years and are well adapted to the Dartmoor weather. They know where to go to get out of the biting wind, find running water when all around is frozen, and even eat gorse which the ponies know is a valuable food source, grinding it with their feet first to make it palatable and remove the prickles.

Following on from the great success last year of a project set up by The Friends of the Dartmoor Hill Pony "THE DARTMOOR FOAL WATCH FACEBOOK PAGE” is running again.

Last year many foals found homes even before they had come in from the moor on the annual pony drift. In October, the ponies are herded off the moor and brought back to the farms where they are checked and the foals weaned and then the decision is made as to which ponies can return to the moor. The foals that cannot return to the moor because Natural England states how many ponies must be on the moor have an uncertain future.

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