The stud book


In 1890, the Shetland Pony Stud-Book Society was formed with the objects being “to maintain unimpaired the purity of the breed of Shetland ponies and to promote the breeding of these ponies”.

This was the first society for a breed of native ponies to be formed in Britain and today is the second largest after the Welsh Pony and Cob Society. The first stud book was published in 1891 and recorded details of 408 mares, many with foals, and 48 stallions.The success of this is shown by the fact that the Stud-Book is in the same format today.

Mother Stud-Book

In 1992 the Society gained official recognition as the stud-book of origin for the breed of Shetland ponies throughout the world. Any other stud-books that record registered Shetland ponies, regardless of their geographical location, are known as Daughter Stud-Books and these must obtain official recognition from the appropriate Ministry within their own country. There can be many officially recognised Daughter Stud-Books within any one country, but only one Mother Stud-Book which sets the principles of entry and the stud-book layout. Approved Daughter Stud-Books must comply with the rules and principles of the Mother Stud-Book (the stud-book of origin of the breed). All the rules of the Mother Stud-Book must be complied with by the Daughter Stud-Books in order to facilitate free trade without barrier.

The Mother Stud-Book was first formed in 1890 in order to protect the pedigree and lineage of pedigree Shetland ponies wherever they may reside in the world. A pedigree Shetland pony born in the United Kingdom, regardless of wherever it is domiciled in the world, has the legal right for its full pedigree to be recognised without restrictions being placed upon its breeding, showing or otherwise. This equally applies to any pedigree Shetland pony registered with any Daughter Stud-Book that is officially recognised.

All Registrations and Transfers of Ownership are processed by the office in Perth, as are Membership applications and Subscriptions.

It is a legal requirement for every UK equine to hold a passport by the age of six months or 31st December in the year of its birth, whichever is later and the Society issues passports for registered Shetland ponies. Details of all these services are to be found on the General Rules pages and Forms.

Principles for Entry into Stud-Books

  1. All pedigree Shetland ponies, whose sire and dam are already registered in the SPS-BS Mother Stud-Book, have a legal right of entry into the main body of the Mother Stud-Book. The Society will enter into the breeding book, animals of the same breed that are eligible for entry under the Society’s breed criteria, without discrimination on account of their country of origin;
  2. All foals must be registered within twelve months of their birth.  Any pedigree Shetland pony, who has missed the twelve month deadline for registration, may still be registered by the Breeder but will incur additional registration fees and will have to prove parentage with full DNA parentage testing, paid for in full by the breeder at the correct fee in place at that time.  The Shetland pony over twelve months old will need to have its own DNA compared to that of its Sire and Dam.  Only once DNA has been provided and parentage proven will the pony be accepted for entry into the Stud-Book;
  3. The breeder is the only person who can register a pedigree foal;
  4. The breeder applies to the SPS-BS and must complete a registration application form and lodges this form together with the correct fee at the office of the SPS-BS.  Any Identification Rules (the “Identification Rules”) in force at the time of application must be met by the breeder of the foal/pony.  The Identification Rules may be amended by a resolution of the Board of Directors (as constituted from time to time) of the Society (passed by simple majority by the Board of Directors);
  5.  The Sire and Dam must already be registered in the main body of the Shetland Pony Stud-Book;
  6. No pony shall be accepted for registration whose sire and dam are not already entered in the Stud-Book of an officially recognised Shetland pony Stud-Book, recognised as a Daughter (Filial) Stud-Book either by the Mother Stud-Book (SPS-BS) who is the Stud-Book of origin of the breed of Shetland ponies or as recognised by the legislation of the European Union;
  7. All Shetland ponies that are registered in the main body of the SPS-BS Mother Stud-Book will have full rights and privileges of a breeding animals and have no restrictions placed upon them;
  8. The rules of registration for pedigree Shetland ponies cannot be changed, altered or added to, or amended other than by special resolution of the members of the Society passed at a lawfully convened General Meeting at which at least 40% of the members of the Society are present in person, or except as specifically set out in Paragraph 4 of these rules;
  9. The pedigree of all ponies, to be entered and registered within the SPSBS stud-book, must be shown to trace back to the stud-book of origin.   No pony will be accepted unless the pedigree is proven to the satisfaction of the SPSBS.
  10. Any pony being transferred out-with the UK must be registered in the name of the seller/vendor, whose signature must be obtained before any transfer can be recorded;
  11. Any pony being exported from the UK must have an International Pony Movement Certificate (IPMC) completed by both a veterinary surgeon, who verifies the identification of the pony, and the registered owner.  A zootechnical certificate will also accompany the animal.