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Little Starts for Big People

What are people thinking about when they see a pony? A little harmless horse. Some people get excited and feel the desire of keeping a pony at home. But it is not that easy. Keeping a pony is an interesting hobby but it takes time and effort. But if you are still willing to keep a pony, advice fro "Zoo at Home" column will be of use for you.

First you should know that a pony demands lots of attention and human presence. To make it a really well brougt-up and close friend, the master should attend to it at least twice a day as well as take it for a walk allowing it to spend its time actively and merrily. You should regularly brush it. By the way, it enhances your friendly communication. This animal certainly should not be kept in your datcha which you attend only twice a week.

Another important moment is husbandry. Ideally pony should be outside all day long - in a yard or in a pen. He should be inside only during night. Even if there are frosts of 30 degrees below zero, pony can spend all day outside. There should be a feeding-rack in the pen so that the animal should stamp on food. The pen design might be very simple, frr from draughts. Heating is not needed. The stall should be not more than 8-9 sq.m of area, it should be furnished with e feeding rack for food concentrates and salt for licking. Hay is fed from the floor. Food should be fresh and of good quality. Substrate should be of saw-dust of hay. 

Feeding of pony is the same as that of a horse. However, there is some difference. The main diet should be hay. One hald of it is put into the pen. Another half of it is placed in the stall for night-time. In the summer hay is replaced with fresh grass, up to 15 kilos a day, or the pony grazes by itself in the morning and in the evening. As a treat, pony is hand-fed a carrot (not more than 200 grams a day). One can add cabbage, beets and potatoes. Salt brick should be available. Watering is perormed three times a day in the summer and two times a day in winter. In winter ponies eat snow with delight but they still should be offered water two times a day. If a pony lives in a city where snow is dirty, pony should be be given plenty of water so thet it would not eat snow.




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