Standard of Excellence
The American Shetland Pony should be one of, beauty, versatility, substance, style and refinement. The body should have a trim barrel with a clearly defined wither, be short-coupled and have a level back and flat croup. The head should be carried high on a well arched neck which should be symmetrical and proportionate to the body with width between prominent eyes; a fine jaw; short, sharp and erect ears; a small muzzle with flaring nostrils and a refined throat latch. The pony shall have a full mane and tail.
SIZE:To mature 46 inches and under at maturity.
HEAD: Small, short and clean cut, set well on arched neck and carried high.
EARS:Small, fine, alert, expressive, set well on head and be delicately curving toward the tip.
EYES:Large, luminous, placed well on head giving the head a diamond shape from the front on view.
FOREHEAD:Wide and smooth
FACE:Straight or very slightly concave (dished). Any indication of a Roman profile shall be severely faulted.
Blending into the muzzle with a gentle curve; a roman nose shall be severely faulted.
TEETH: An even bite is necessary with no more than 3mm out in adult stock.
NOSTRILS: Prominent and open but tear shaped on a small and refined muzzle and firm lip.
CHIN: Should continue line from upper lip, should not be meaty or flabby.
JAW: Not as pronounced and massive as on some breeds; should show some bulge, particularly stallions to denote masculinity.
THROAT: Fine and pronounced; the intersection of the neck into the head should be horizontal to give a fine rounded throat latch and an arched neck with the head carried high.
NECK: Should be well carried and moderately lean in mares, mature stallions may show a crest but in all sexes the neck must be in proportion with the body.
BODY: Should be firm and muscular. It should have a trim barrel with a clearly defined wither, be short-coupled and have a level back and flat croup.
HINDQUARTERS: Well muscled hips.
LEGS: Should be straight and not turned out or in.
TAIL: Should not be low set and a higher tail set is desirable, tail should be long and full.
HOOVES: Hard and dense, wider at the base than at the coronary band, heels open and angle that of the pastern.
MOVEMENT: Free true and forcibly straight forward; the walk should be relaxed; the trot should show freedom of movement, open and reaching covering ground then asked. Stiff legged movement, egg beater or piston like movement should be faulted. All ponies must be sound. Any pony showing evidence of lameness or broken wind shall be refused an award.
COLOUR: Any colour is acceptable in part bred but Appaloosa/pintalossa is not acceptable in the pure bred.
TEMPERAMENT: A good settled temperament without appearing dull or bored. Pony should be alert, showy and eye catching. Forgiving in foals.