There’s a little bit of heaven in the town of Lawn, which is located at the tip of the Burin Peninsula. Max Brockerville has seven ponies there; four of them are Newfoundland Ponies. His love for the breed and his connection to them runs deep; “I live and die for them.” His mare, Max’s May, Registration #460, who is 23 years old, he has had since she was a baby. She recently gave birth to Maggie May. He and his wife Darlane also have Newfoundland Ponies Duff and Pumpkin.
Max remembers when there were 145 Newfoundland Ponies on the Burin Peninsula back in 1985. “When the quads came on the market, the ‘Big Red’ especially, it spelled the end for the Pony. It was devasting,” he said. He does everything he can now to promote and showcase his ponies so the public can see just how trainable they are. He drove 700 posts into the ground himself and put up the wire fencing for the paddock. “It’s important for people to interact with them, for children to ride them. I explain how these ponies hauled wood for us and pulled kelp from the beach for our gardens. Newfoundlanders could not have survived without them. We owe them a great debt,” he added.
The Newfoundland Pony is known for its intelligence. “They’re easy to train; the same as a really good dog actually,” said Max. Working with his pony in the woods, he could load her up with wood and send her out to the road. “She knew the route. And my brother was waiting for her; he would unload her and send her right back to me,” he said.
If you are interested in getting a Newfoundland Pony or learning more about the breed, please contact the Newfoundland Pony Society.