About Virginia Highlander Horses
Virginia Highlanders are a small breed of horse with a four-beat
The inspiration for the breed was Pogo, a chestnut stallion
foaled in 1960, a small crossbred horse, thought to have been sired by a Welsh
pony, out of an Arabian/Tennessee Walker mare. He had a natural singlefoot
gait. His owner, William M. Pugh, intrigued by the good-natured, naturally
gaited stallion, developed a breeding program for small gaited horses, by
crossing Pogo and his descendants with other Arabians, Tennessee Walkers,
Morgans, and American Saddlebreds as well as Hackney ponies, and Welsh ponies.
Horses that met Pugh's criteria for conformation, disposition and gaited
ability were bred on. The registry began with two foundation stallions, Shadow
of the Ridge and Pugh's Red Cloud.
The Virginia Highlander Horse Association was formed in the
early 1990s to promote the Virginia Highlander breed through registry and
education. Twenty-two horses (20 mares and 2 stallions) made up the original
foundation stock. By June 2004, there were more than 130 registered Virginia
Highlanders beyond the original foundation animals.
Virginia Highlanders stands between 13 to 14 hands (52 to 56
inches, 132 to 142 cm) high. Their coat colors include roan, chestnut, black
and gray, as well the occasional white.