Email I Phone Angie 01208 850460 I Website by Sarah Callaway (email)

Breed History



The Merens are an ancient breed, native to the Ariege region of the Pyrenees in France. Paintings of horses strikingly similar to Merens can be found in the caves at Niaux, dating back to stone age times.


Coming from a mountainous region, they are extremely hardy, withstanding temperatures as low as minus 20°, and cope well with the summer heat.

They have been used by mountain farmers for centuries and are very surefooted, used to working the steep slopes and dealing with the scree and rocks of the mountain passes.


Usually between 14hh - 15.2hh, they are all black, with an abundant mane and tail. They are well known for their calm and gentle disposition.

These horses are easy to keep, hardy with good, hard hooves they are often able to go barefoot, only requiring regular trimming.


Why have a Merens?

The calm and easy temperament of the Merens make them ideal for those looking for a horse that is easy to live with and capable of most disciplines.

They are also intelligent, learn well and have good memories and even if they haven't been ridden for some time will act in a sane and sensible manner. However, don't be misled into thinking that they are plodding ponies fit only for hacking. Kind and gentle they may be but several have won national TREC competitions in France and one came second in the European TREC. They are also successfully used for showjumping, vaulting and driving and for high school dressage.




They do need to be outside and aren’t happy and don’t thrive being stabled all day. We feel that their disposition is such that they would be ideal as horses for people not wanting to 'over-horse' themselves. However, their strength and versatility ensure that they are equally suitable for riders looking for a horse that can perform well in any sphere.

These horses are suitable to be used as a leisure horse, will load without problems and be a competent all round unspooky ride. The Leisure Label is a certified test set up and run by the Les Haras Nationaux and SHERPA Merens and was introduced to promote the Merens Breed. Click here to view details of the leisure label.