Talk to me about connemaras...

tda

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18 April 2013
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1,803
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Yorkshire
My old instructor had one for her daughter, she did flat and workers, competed him numerous times WHP at HOYS/RI etc, he was very talented, but VERY quirky, and just a general stress head, he must be in his mid 20's now and instructor now uses him as her hackabout pony.

Another friend had an overgrown 15hh version, but he was plain naughty, dirty stops jumping etc. She lost her confidence jumping so sold him and bought a Fell pony and has never looked back
 

LCH611

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24 March 2009
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I have 4 for me and my kids, and absolutely adore them, they are the ultimate all-rounders! They turn their hooves to everything mine hunt, jump, event, do dressage, play polo and are very straightforward and easy to keep. Only one can be a bit overreactive at times, the others all have fabulous temperaments and nothing seems to phase them
 

twiggy2

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3 July 2013
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Highlands from Essex
Talented - often
Nice nature - usually
Nice to look at- mostly
Semsitive- frequently
Quirky-almost always
We had one at work who was show quality, very handsome, dapple grey, 14.1hh, did BE to 100 very successfully with 13yr old rider, dressage did very well show jumping good too. Never stopped cross country but started with very dirty stops show jumping turned out to have significant damage to soft tissue in stifle- retired to hacking home after surgery.
Next was on trial to buy as eventing pony, 14hh, could wipe the floor with anything in dressage, horrendous conformation, just used to slow down and stop when going cross-country, no pattern to it just seems he did not enjoy it so he would not do it, he was with us for a year in the end but never changed he went to a purely dressage home
Third one is still with us, papered as full Connie with good breeding but is over height, too fine looks to be half tb, I have refused to ride him now as he does not get enough work so is bored and extra quirky- he will not stand still in traffic so dances about, trips up kerbs, bumps into posts and generally gets his legs in a knot. He pulls wooden posts and electric fencing down, stomps in wheel barrows and on muck rakes, just generally breaks anything in reach.
All of them have been difficult or impossible to kep weight off.
I loved the first one, the second one was ok, the current one would-be great if he was getting worked hard.
 

chahala

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6 April 2013
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78
Have just acquired one!

So far seems very laid back and wanting to please. Needs a firm hand on ground and teaching about personal space. Is sensitive but not overly emotional. Likes his food but not greedy. Seems straight forward to ride. Filthy toilet habits!

I think we will get on...
 

Bubblewrap

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2 April 2014
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301
I have a Connie X, he is pretty much perfect! Beautiful to look at, he's a buckskin, and very easy to do.
He had been turned away for two years and hadn't been schooled much before I bought him and it took a year to get him round as I was very careful with him. He does well in showing, WHP, jumping and dressage. He is very easy to do and well behaved. He has just the right amount of go forward and you never feel unsafe on him and he can shift if you want.
Had hundreds of offers for him but never going to part with him. Feel very privileged to be his owner!
 

Irish gal

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28 August 2013
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The Golden Vale
This is a good time for you to buy OP because they are getting very expensive. Prices were drastically improved - which was great to see at the Cliften sales. Over the summer nice performance Connies were commanding serious prices - like over €20,000. And they are selling very well to the continent; so if you can pick up a nice over size Connie, I would go for it as the same horse may be more expensive down the line.
 

NinjaPony

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25 March 2011
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2,124
I have a Connemara and he is pretty much perfect. Everyone who has ever met him loves him- he is incredibly laid back, easy going and tries very hard at everything! He has an excellent jump and has been round HOYS workers tracks before I switched him to dressage-he just won his novice class a couple of days ago on 67%. Can't say enough good things about his temperament- he can be sensitive to flies, a little noise sensitive and doesn't have the best breathing-he needs to be in a dust free environment- but he is just the most lovely person to have around. So if you are looking for a wonderful all rounder, IME you can't beat a Connie, even if he is permanently filthy...
 
Joined
21 June 2011
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I haven't posted on here in a quite a while but I must say Connies are brilliant fun! Mine is a registered 15hh but I've ridden a fair number of overheight ones since I bought him (some stockier old fashioned types and some sports types) and they all seem rather similar. In a nutshell they're generally quirky, strongly opinionated and always filthy but they are equally talented, brave and always seem willing to try.
Another thing I've noticed with all the ones I've ridden is their go to reaction if their confused/don't want to do something they try to remove themselves from a situation at speed! I think ultimately they've always got 'pony brain' and that'll always be really helpful in some situations and less so in others.
From a management perspective like most other people they all seem to be good does, I know a few that have problems with sweet itch, one with a bit of a dust allergy and a couple that have had concussional injuries in the front hooves but that may just have been a coincidence.
Token picture!
 
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Irish gal

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28 August 2013
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The Golden Vale
Interesting that you mention a few with sweet itch Barney. A very good equine vet told me recently that he reckons up to 30% of Connies have it. There's something in the breed that predisposes them to it, he believes.
 

oldie48

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15 April 2013
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South Worcestershire
Ours were just lovely talented kind easy ponies, not opinionated, didn't have sweet itch, just got on with their job and gave my daughter so much pleasure. I'd buy another connie at the drop of a hat!

 

GinaGeo

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23 October 2011
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1,143
I have one. Had him nine years now. Bought him as a four year old when I was thirteen.

The good:
-He's an absolute poppet. Absolutely zero malice in him.
-Super bold. Fantastic hunter will lead the field over the biggest of hedges without a second thought. Super bold XC, no XC jumping faults.
- In nine years I don't think I've ever fallen off him.
-He's a very sound horse. Apart from a bout of laminitis when he got porky whilst I was away he's never been lame.
-Mum happily trailers him off by herself to go hacking and you know that he will look after her.

The bad
-He's bloody tricky to ride. Schooling all has to be done super softly. And he will always show tension in a dressage test. And you can never really ride him, you have to sit quietly and hope he decides to play ball, this can be problematic in a test situation!
- He's not allergic to wood. In fact he quite enjoys playing skittles show jumping.
-He's grey, like a lot of connies are. Melanomas are an issue.
- His feet are dreadful.
- He can be a spooky ******. And will hapilly throw himself in front of a car because a leaf blew wrong. We avoid road hacking now.
- He's a good doer generally, and requires a grazing muzzle. But let the weight come slightly off too much and it's an absolute battle to get it back on again. Likewise once he goes hunting he will stop eating and does get very hot to handle!
-Respiratory issues
-Back issues aplenty.

He has just been to his first affiliated BE Event (I've been eventing my other horse) and we came back with a 39 dressage, 12 jumping and clear XC which I was pretty pleased with. But he'd hapilly jump round a novice XC with his eyes closed. And that is something we're considering. It's all experience afterall. Even if we do rack up a cricket score before we make it to the XC, and I accept that now. He is what he is. He's a bloody fantastic cross country horse. But he will never be a dressage diva or a show jumping superstar. But when we were jumping out of mud and wading to the XC start last week I was very glad to be sat on my Irish bog pony who never even noticed it.

I love him dearly. I wouldn't buy another, not for what I want to do. But I love him to bits.

There are pictures of him on the link in my signature - It's been yonks since I posted pictures on here and I have no idea where to start anymore!
 

Irish gal

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The Golden Vale
The picture of my daughter riding the grey, daughter is 5'8" and she is over 11st, did FEI pony trials, pony is 148cm with shoes.
Agree, they are a hardy breed, which people sometimes forget. Connemara is a fairly rugged, windswept spot. Very rocky and not the most fertile. So they can survive on very little.

A friend who is 12.5 stone hunted a 15.2 Connie and swore he could not get the bottom of him - endless energy!
 

njyr

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28 December 2010
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152
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Midlands
Pretty accurate descriptions from my POV. I've a beautiful 14hh mare - has turned her hoof to everything I've asked of her so far. She's definitely opinionated and sensitive though - if she doesn't like someone or something or is worried about a situation it's written all over her face and her body language. Having said that she's never put a hoof out of line - she'll pull the nastiest of faces but doesn't bite, will swish her tail and pick up a hoof but won't kick (you have to really offend her to get this response) and will shake like a leaf when she's scared. It puts some people off - they think she'll be hard to handle but she's really not and everyone who has handled her has fallen in love. She's sharp to ride but easy to persuade that she does want to do what you want to. As a result I wouldn't put a complete novice on her, if she does spook she'll move darn quick for about 3 strides. If your sensitive and feel it coming a half halt will prevent it. She's quick to learn too...that's a double edged sword. In the 18 months I've had her she's gone from a pony that could barely do a 20m circle to qualifying and competing at Trailblazers. She'd not really jumped and will pop an 85cm course with ease. It's been a wonderful journey. I've kept a blog to track our progress: www.horseyculture.wordpress.com. Good luck in your search!
 

Sammy1983

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16 May 2013
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240
Location
Worcester
I love love love mine. Only had him 3monyhs but would buy another in a heartbeat. He is connie X Tb 14.3 and I'm 5ft7 and definitely over 11 stone. As others have said he is quirky and will take the pee when ridden if allowed to on the plus side he is the cleverest horse I've ever ridden and a super quick learner. He jumps like stink and managed to get a 68% in his first ever dressage test on 6 weeks schooling. Definitely brain like a pony and I wouldn't class him as a first horse can spin 180 in a heartbeat but has the best character and bags of talent. I think they are an amazing breed


 

UnaB

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9 September 2008
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Gloucestershire
I have had my Connie 20years now. Best pony in the world 😊 competed dressage, showing, bsja and eventing. Hunted. Perfect to hack.

Bought him just backed from Ireland as a 4yr old. Couldn't go in a circle but would jump anything lol. Love him! He's now retired but has a home for life.





 

Damnation

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25 February 2008
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North Cumbria
Where I worked used to breed them and use them in the riding school. Here is what I have picked up from them:

1) I've never met an ugly one, they are all adorable!
2) The can be absolutely pig headed and stubborn!!!
3) HUGE personality, they have so much character and they are very cheeky and loveable.
4) Good doers.
5) Once over the stubborn-ness they are usually lovely, versatile, honest all rounders.
6) They can turn their hoof to almost anything.
 
Joined
29 July 2016
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10
Just in a general way, I know it would depend on the individual, but how much weight would an average 15hh connie happly take?
 
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