Horse and Pony Measurements
The pony on the left measures 12 hands high (h.h.), while the horse on the right measures 17.2 h.h. Each hand contains four inches. A horse can be 15 hands, 15.1 hands, 15.2 hands, 15.3 hands, but never 15.4 hands tall. If a horse measures 15.4 h.h. then it is actually 16 hands high.
You pronounce a 13.2 h.h. pony as “thirteen two hands”, a 14.1 h.h. pony would be “fourteen one hands”, and a 16.3 h.h. horse would be “sixteen three hands”.
Difference Between Ponies and Horses
The difference between ponies and horses is their height. Ponies are no taller than 14.2 hands high (58 inches) at the withers, while horses are taller than 14.2 hands high.
Pony Heights Explained
The shortest a horse can be is 14.3 hands high (h.h.); otherwise it is categorized as a pony.
The tallest a pony can be is 14.2 h.h.