Which breed of horse is this?
The Pony of the Americas (POA) is a pony breed developed in the United States. The foundation stallion was an Arabian/Appaloosa/Shetland pony cross.
The POA was developed in the 1950s by Les Boomhower, a Shetland pony breeder in Iowa. The foundation stallion of the breed was an Arabian/Appaloosa/Shetland pony cross with Appaloosa markings named Black Hand. Boomhower appreciated the stallion's conformation and disposition and decided to use him to develop a new breed of Appaloosa-colored ponies. In 1954, Boomhower and a group of associations founded the Pony of the Americas Club, with Black Hand receiving the first registration number.
Today, the Pony of the Americas Club is one of the largest and most active youth-oriented horse breed registries in the US. Although called ponies, POAs have the phenotype of a small horse, combining mainly Arabian and American Quarter Horse attributes.
Ponies are only registered with the Pony of the Americas club if they have Appaloosa coloring visible from 40 feet (12 m), otherwise known as "loud" Appaloosa coloring. The coloration includes the typical leopard complex characteristics of mottling around the eyes, muzzle and genitalia, as well as visible white sclera of the eyes and striped hooves.
The facial profile of the POA is slightly concave, or dished like an Arabian horse. It is a muscular breed, with a deep chest and well-sloped shoulders. The breed averages 11.2 to 14 hands (46 to 56 inches, 117 to 142 cm) high.