What is Pony Play?

By Jamaal Avery, Segment Producer, Taboo USA

When Pony Play was brought to my attention for this segment I wasn’t quite sure what it was and what to expect. Once I saw pictures, I assumed this was just some kinky sexual activity. I had no knowledge of anything in the BDSM world and in fact I had to look up the definition of BDSM. Before meeting Persephone, I assumed she would be a handful being that she was a dominatrix and the trainer of her ponies. Upon meeting Persephone my view of her changed immediately, she welcomed us in her home and was very nice to us and even bragged to us about her herb garden.

Once Persephone fully explained and showed us what pony play was, I quickly realized that everything I thought this was going to be was actually not the case. While some people do engage in sexual acts during pony play, that is not a necessity. I learned that pony play is actually more of a role-play and that Persephone’s Pony Play was not sexual at all. Both Persephone and her pony Ivy both have committed boyfriends and they do not engage in any sexual acts outside of their relationships.

While some pony players play for the sexual stimulation they get from it, Mistress Persephone and Ivy Red do not do it for that reason at all. Mistress Persephone enjoys the power she has over a person and dominating them rather than “getting off on it.” Persephone’s pony does not play for any sexual reasons either, but likes to be dominated and be the center of attention which is why her costume is so detailed. The more intricate the costume, the better the experience they get out of it. The entire payoff for these ladies is for the pony to act like a real pony.

Our shoot was about three days long, and in those days I ended up being a part of that lifestyle—not to say I dressed up and participated, but just the impact of the people I met. Even though Persephone was the person I was filming, I mentally became a part of her world. When anyone would stare or say something under their breath, I found myself defending her and pony play. Being a non-fetish heterosexual African American male never in a million years would I think I would feel and care about someone like Persephone and pony play, but along the way she became my friend and I did for her what I would do for any my friends or family. In short, I learned acceptance. I walked away from this experience knowing 1.) There is nothing that can shock me. And 2.) It’s not what you do behind closed doors that shapes who you are.

Tune in to Taboo USA: Secret Passions tonight at 10P


  1. Mistress Persephone
    San Francisco, CA
    June 6, 2013, 1:10 pm


    It was my pleasure working with you and your fantastic crew. I’d gladly open my home to you all again, anytime. The last day of the shoot was bittersweet because I enjoyed my time with you all so much. Thank you for giving me a chance to possibly open up people’s minds through this program and for being so kind to me.

    I’m very touched by this!

    Your friend,

  2. Mia
    London, England
    June 18, 2013, 10:54 am

    Even the dogs look weirded out by all of this ‘pony play.’ why don’t we just call it for what it really is: “weirdness.”

  3. Ray
    United States
    July 7, 2013, 10:23 pm

    Why is it “weirdness.” Just because you don’t like it and it’s not mainstream doesn’t make it weird. I don’t find it a turn on but if it isn’t hurting anyone then I say enjoy. To each their own. Society really needs to be more accepting of the lifestyles of others.

  4. Beauty the Pony Boy
    United States
    December 13, 2013, 10:56 pm

    Mia? Normal is a relative and subjective concept. What is normal for one person is the height of “weirdness” for others.

    I enjoy pony play. I am a very fancy show pony, if I do say so myself. If you find it “weird” then by all means, don’t don any tack and don’t touch my reins. However, I’m very sure that there is something you like or that you do that I would find “weird.” The difference is, I celebrate diversity instead of mocking or deriding it.

    That is to say, if a horse may have an opinion.

  5. John
    February 12, 2014, 11:14 am

    Hi Pony Boy (I’m not sure of your real name so I’ll just call you Hal… I dont want to be rude but the practice of Pony Play is not healthy.I dont care if its called normal or weird. When you take your identity as a human-being and give it away to pursue “Pony Dreams” you are cutting yourself short. To be straight… You are not a pony Hal. If you look in the mirror and see a small horse then I am amazed that a horse can type. I’m venturing that you are a created human-being. Practice the art of living as you are created and let the farm animals be real farm animals. You are opening a door to confusion Hal. When confusion is practiced… your compass is broken.

  6. Levi
    Portland, Oregon
    March 22, 2014, 2:37 pm

    John. John, John, John. You’re missing the point. For me, it’s about being the center of attention completely, and though I DO get off on it? Doesn’t mean that that’s what everyone else is in it for. Don’t criticize Pony Boy’s method of living. [content removed for language] leave the kinks and fetishes to those of us who know what they actually are. Thank you, and goodbye.

  7. Naushad Ahmad
    March 25, 2014, 10:01 am

    why people are doing Pony play, what is the benefit of it.
    I think this is total useless thing, I think people are wasting the time and Energy and money also, if it is any use of this so, Please, Tell me about this, last night i was looking some shots of Pony Trainer on National Geography Channel and i was Shok, What is this why people are doing this.

  8. slavepony
    April 4, 2014, 4:42 pm

    If your into BDSM then you know that its not all about sex it has a lot of compounds involved. Each individual is different some of us prefer to serve and some prefer to be served.I could be wrong but it sounds like any other relationship. Till this idea was introduced into your head. Try to understand my point of view as I am yours.

  9. Allen
    May 6, 2014, 9:08 am

    The first time I heard of this years ago I thought it was pretty wierd. Wierd enough to make a gonzo journalist look twice. But like the author said in so many words, we all have our thing.
    Maybe some folks were horses in a prior life.

  10. Fatima Imran
    May 13, 2014, 2:19 pm

    God has created us human but I think people are sick and way more interested in acting like animals.

  11. Reva
    June 8, 2014, 7:22 pm

    I saw this episode today itself and i was totally amazed . It is actually very difficult for me to understand the mind set of the people involved in such practice.
    I am an artist. I do painting and i am sort of thinking to work on this concept. I basically need help on a few queries.
    First is that has any body been forced to perform a pony? I mean does everybody involve in this because of their own interest?
    And secondly is it important for all the ponies to get dressed according to their roles? Cant they perform in their regular appearances?
    Please if anybody can help me by mailing me the details about the mind sets, the conclusions, the technicalities, and everything else which would help me understand or study this practice thoroughly. I would be grateful. 🙂
    My email id is – reva21msu@gmail.com

  12. rrinlv
    Las Vegas NV
    June 22, 2014, 12:13 pm

    I think that a person should be allowed to act anyway that they want to when it comes to private personal practice. It isn’t contagious. If a person likes the control and is willing to participate, why should we judge them. We all have fantasies which could be considered strange or weird, some people have the nerve to act them out. Whats the harm.

  13. slavecur
    June 22, 2014, 2:23 pm

    your highness mistress persephone this dog worship ur photo evryday u r my goddess

  14. Tom
    June 27, 2014, 8:35 pm

    Really? People from India are disparaging the ponies? The land where women are burned for dowries and children are sold? The land of pariahs and sacred cows? Really? I think this is relatively a lot less harmful. Westerners probably think that the Juggernaut was a strange concept. Or that a book could be a prophet. Just as variety and difference make India a fantastic country, so with other cultures and subcultures. And subsubcultures. It doesn’t do anything for me, but live and let live!

  15. […] Oculus Rift Does Facebook “Get the Big Picture”? Kickstarter Supporters Denounce Buyout What is Pony Play? The Tor […]

  16. Fletcher
    July 22, 2014, 2:36 pm

    Look at it this way… if everyone everywhere adhered to the idea that they should never engage in something fun and imaginative for the sake of being what they see in the mirror there would be a very limited entertainment industry to speak of. There would never have been the Muppets, Star Wars, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, Walking Dead, Battlestar Galactica, Charmed, Sabrina, Teletubbies, Sesame Street, Electric Company, Transformers, Batman, Spider-Man, Avengers, Iron Man, Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, Indiana Jones, Wizard of Oz, Charlie/Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, WWII movies, westerns, or even dramas such as Mask, Man Without a Face, or Gone with the Wind. There’d be no Santa Claus, trick or treating, no Mardi Gras parades, or colorful characters for kids parties. Or, for those wanting to wave a bible, there’d be no passion plays because everyone would look in the mirror and think, “Oh, it’s not proper that I dress up and play Jesus or a Roman soldier or such.” The only visual entertainment would basically be reality TV.. and so much of that is actually staged that it’s still not people being “who they are in the mirror.” The world would just be soccer mommies and businessmen doped up on Xanax to numb themselves from their dreary lives.

    As for a waste of time and money, I hope those that cite those reasons don’t read for leisure, golf, fish, hunt, play sports, go out to dinner, go to movies, attend sporting events, or do anything other than working, sleeping, and eating very basic meals. Anything done for leisure is “a waste of time and money.”

    As for performing in their “normal appearances,” would you want to see a production of “Julius Caesar” with everyone dressed in their pajamas? Would you prefer that the pope do mass in jeans and a T-shirt? Would you let your kids sit on some drunk guy’s lap if he wasn’t dressed like Santa Claus? Would you want your lawyer showing up for a hearing in their bathrobe? There are certain uniforms, outfits, and even costumes people don to be in a certain mindset for a role they play be it for fun or for their profession. This is really no different.

    I don’t partake of this myself, but I know people who do. It’s really no different than enjoying crafting, costuming and acting. Sure, it might raise an eyebrow or two because much of the costuming involves vinyl or leather, but it doesn’t really hurt anyone or anything so long as everyone is consenting. And to address that question above, the only reason anyone would be “forced” to be a pony is because they want to be forced to do so – which is still consenting because they enjoy being bossed around. Ironically – many people who enjoy that are actually the bosses of many things that enjoy the role-reversal as a release from the stress of the demands placed on them in daily life. Otherwise, no.. no one is holding someone at gunpoint and saying, “You vill dress up as ze pony!” like some Nazi stereotype.

    It may not fit “the norm,” but normal is really only a setting on a dryer. It’s not hurting anyone… and if it harm none, do as you will.

  17. Dana Teresa
    Oregon USA
    September 25, 2014, 6:29 pm

    Fletcher, Great comment, you have a true grasp of the world. Thank you for saving me a lot of typing, I could not improve on what you said.

    Dana Teresa

  18. Mr_Jaye
    United States
    September 29, 2014, 12:07 am

    Dear All,

    “Knowledge is Power… and with Great Power comes Great Responsibility”. That is more than just 2 quotes from history and movies, it’s truth… there is power behind words.

    The same way how the origins of most people’s names hold a meaning that Does reflects someone’s personality, your words online are a reflection of your own personality as well as how you “choose” to impact others. So if your next words in life are primarily for self entertainment in annoying others, it is wise to reevaluate your own perception of “what is fun” and “what am I doing that will better myself” because nobody will ever care as much about you as you do.


    With that said… the only reason why I am on this site is because (yes) I am in a few BDSM groups, looking to discover and understand different lifestyles. I’m walking in with an open-mind, and I had and still have always been treated with respect and was told “you may explore your curiosities and can say No to anything you do not want to explore”. Because of my open-mindedness, I have developed real friendships with people (from the BDSM groups) and are still friends outside of the lifestyles.

    Pony Play: I am going to a group event called an “Educational”, where you have a guest speaker (a person of knowledge and experience) explain to you what it is, the variations, and how you can explore your interests by watching and/or participating. I already know that I’m definitely too dominant to become someone’s “pony” but I intend to watch with an open mind and enjoy the gathering of a sane, fun, and enlightening group of people who are causing no harm.

    Similar hatred that people have towards what they call “weird” has led to kids being bullied because they put school work 1st priority over being what’s socially cool… bullied so far that school shootings of the bullies and innocent people has occurred, racism has led to a lot of abuse and many deaths (even recently with racial profiling leading to cops shooting unarmed minors), and I dare not touch on the continuous hate crimes against homosexual relations, religious beliefs, etc.

    The day people become more honest about where their discomfort and hatred comes from, the sooner we all will realize that people wanting to be someone they are not, on their own deserving off time, is their business and is causing you and others No Harm. Yet your responses are chosen words to make someone feel uncomfortable about something harmless that they enjoy.

    Though I am not a pony, never will be, and probably not going to want to own one, I accept that it’s a harmless lifestyle and I harbor no hatred for it neither. But I am just one man, speaking from my point of view because what I’ve “chosen” to post is not something of destructive intent… it’s meant to enlighten those who only find what they know to be life and hate the world for not living in their individual worlds. And nobody says you have to like what everyone else likes… and I’m sure everyone could pick apart your life and find multiple things you say, think, and do is probably foul, disgusting, or… “weird”. Shoot… I think it’s weird most males do not wash their hands “before and after” they pee, but want to shake everyone’s hands and wants a woman’s mouth to please it! Same goes for the females who wipe (or don’t wipe) and then do not wash their hands, because they felt safe only touching the public toilet paper (forgetting they touched the toilet handle, bathroom door… even kissed their girlfriends cheek who may have had an oral fantasy released on her face and “only” wiped it off with water, because it’s “okay” to her, and is kinda “the norm” in the world). On a cleaner note, and for those not enjoying the inappropriate imagery, that I’m going to blame on fatigue and the lack of sobriety… “if you don’t like what you see and hear, just walk away! Because sooner or later, people aren’t going to like something that you Do like”, and you know what’s going to be on your mind? “Leave me alone, I ain’t hurting nobody”.

    Just being 1 of the few in the world who actually are responsible with the power of speech… I hope everyone is a better person tomorrow than they were yesterday.


    PS: As close-minded and hypocritical as this “may appear”… nobody is perfect and we all have our flaws. Though open-mindedness is 1 of many ways to live in peace and freedom (instead of the mental prison you lock yourselves in), I’m admitting that I will Never be okay with rapist, child molesters, and murderers… and though they “fit the code” of living a lifestyle that Does hurt other people, deprives someone of a choice (non-consensual), I’m still confessing I’m close-minded to those situations. However… there are people who explore Rape Fantasies, Age Play, and Consensual-Abuse. And though those are not my “cup-of-tea”, I accept that nobody is being harmed against their will, so I “choose” to not support it, and walk away… rather than voice destruction on someone else’s choices, that does not directly harm anyone. Well, aggressive foreplay and ass slapping is a whole other topic of consensual abuse that I will neither confirm nor deny that I enjoy… but they key words are Consent and Intents. If there is a Consensual activity among people who’s Intent harms no one else outside of that content, then you either learn about it and enjoy, or walk away. Any other responses are questionable of your own Intents.


  19. Zeebra72
    United States
    October 22, 2014, 4:58 pm

    I am so amazed that people put so much weight into the fact of “Why do people want to be animals?” “God Created them as people I dont get it!!!” Blah Blah Blah.

    I have had this fetish for a very long time and until recently havent practiced it. I recently was harnessed and received a tail. Here’s the thing, FROM FIRST HAND KNOWLEDGE,….Sex has nothing to do with Pony Play. Wanting to be an animal is not true ( in most cases ). It is, however, about the release of power and control. When im in full dress for a walk or an event….EVERYTHING in my head as it relates to everyday goes away. Stress, Worries, did I pay the utility bill, what do I have to complete when I get back to work on monday….all gone. Nothing matters but pleasing people, my owner and my handler.

    Some people cant release themselves from this….and thats ok. But the ones of us that can leave someone in COMPLETE control of what we do and just let go are liberated. In a post before someone stated “Why do they have to dress like the animal?” Imagine watching a movie set in biblical times or roman or whatever and all of the actors are just wearing tennis shoes, jeans and t-shirts….No fun right? It about having an imagination.

    For those of you who want to BASH the idea or call it Weird and other names…..I TRULY feel sorry for you. To have a lack of imagination and feel the need to put down the ones that do is just pethetic actually. These people as well as myself that are proud to display their imagination regardless of what it is or where they are have 1000 times the life that you do. So climb back into your white Volvo, drive to your 9-5 job in your business casual attire, eat your wholesome meal, have sex on your designated “Date Night” with your spouse and leave us Free Souls alone.

    PS And yes a Zebra is what I am inside and I enjoy the Hell out of it.

  20. ManriderJim
    April 16, 2015, 1:53 am

    I discovered ponyplay several years ago,and did some research into it. I found it to be very pleasurable and erotic,after speaking with a few ponyboys and trainers. Then I ordered some ponygear like the riding crop and bridle and bit,then used them on a new potential ponyboy. It was one of the best experiences I have ever had,having that kind of control over another person,willing to take on the role of the horse,was like a fantasy come true for me. I do not find anyones fetish,as long as it is with consenting adults,who understand the roles of roleplaying.

  21. biill
    May 27, 2015, 9:45 am

    to anyone looking from the outside in it looks insaine. Do these people want to be a hourse? what the hell are they getting out of it. First i think a great way to describe it is its not that person wants to be a pony, its just a fun thing they do on the weekend. thiink of them like you wold a crosdresser not a transexual. a cross dreser is perfectly happy with their gender just likes to dress up every now and then but a transexual wishes they were another person. no healthy person is going to work saying my name is clover and neighing at people.

  22. Miss VeroniKa
    June 20, 2015, 12:20 am

    I get that people think it’s “weird”, but this is really satisfying for some people. If you’re curious and want to learn more or get supplies, you can go to http://www.petandponyplay.com

  23. Rick
    November 9, 2015, 3:37 am

    I was introduced to pony play more decades ago than I care to admit. This article is so incomplete and the comments so “newbie”. Pony Play goes back over three thousand years in recorded history and was sport or D/s, Yeah I had to learn about the terms also. Unfortunately BDSM came along and ruined the D/s and sport and turned Pony Play from something of a ballet into to an ugly homosexual orgy, more on that in a moment.

    My experience began as child’s play down on all fours and with a young girl I would eventually become engaged to. It began with us both crawling around on the carpet, each as a pony and then moved outside on two hooves with our fore hooves pawing the air. She was my Mare and I was her Stallion….but no sex.

    I am pretty much sure that wherever Persephone exhibits, Pony Sex (and just plain adultery) not only goes on but is expected even though she personally may opt out. I took note she didn’t present that as a moral stand and didn’t say she didn’t engage in Pony Sex but rather her motivation was the feeling of control (D/s). One large Pony Play Event near her and started by straights is now called a BDSM event and they call it a GAY event. This year and last year the organizers posted no straights allowed.

    BDSM means Bondage Discipline Sadism Masochism, a cover meme for Gay Pornfest or GP. D/s means the relationship between a Dominant and a submissive.

    Our pony play that started out on the carpet returned to the carpet with my girl riding me. I wanted to ride her (she was older and still larger) but the adults wouldn’t allow that. As I out grew her stature-wise I gave her rides on my back or shoulders. Then one day she had a surprise for me and took me to a ranch where I was hoof booted and rigged. I was taken by surprise,. I was fitted and reigned so fast I didn’t have much to say. I got a tail but it wasn’t a porno butt plug. I didn’t see any BDSM, My hands did get hoof mitted , bridled and bitted but I was asked if that was OK all the time. No gag but I could expect a lite strop of a velvet crop should I speak. We had three positions for fore hooves, free, clipped to short chains to my collar while presenting or clipped to a fury waist belt while resting. My hands were free when ridden in case I stumbled. One guy had a dorky looking horse head AND he was not allowed to wear it in an active event. Had I known how much control would be taken I might have spoken up. My lady had always tried to dominate me and for the next few days I couldn’t do much more than submit.

    Okay, now the male ponies had a bathroom and the urinal was a trough instead of wall urinals but there was no nudity nor any of this going just anywhere as at some of these events (not most). So is Persephone implying the there is no sex and no exposure of genitals? I am a registered Stallion with the International Human Pony Registry, is she registered? Probably. Anyway I was signed up for an event wen I found that in past years there was complaint about the homosexuals groping the Stallion’s parts. I inquired and was told a slave (pony?) is expected to put up with that. When I asked if there was a straight pony play event, I got hundreds of Ehate Mail, I would guess if it weren’t the sex Persephone wouldnt be a presenter and if I were a betting man which I am not, I’d give long odds she can’t name one local (regional) straight pony play event.

    Its really a shame where Pony Play has been taken. It was often an expression of love and a natural expression between a Wife and husband. We are so used to being expected to be in control all they time that trusting others is hard. Being a pony for your Lover allows a man a sense of satisfaction and tension release. Its a res-bit from the daily grind and good exercise. The day seem brighter, the colors more vivid and the air fresher when your Love is on your back.

    The activity is an escape, one healthier than bowling, playing cards or watching TV. It’s a chance to feel young again and you learn to trust in someone close to you. For the moment she is in charge and she has to be alert and becomes hyperempiric seeing beyond the sense normally used while you are able to relax and soar by leaving the earthly bounds. This brings you both together as human beings on an elevated plane. Its not supposed to have you wallowing in the BDSM gutter.

    I understand why people think it is weird because it is more than that, it’s a perverted imitation of Real Pony Play that has been forced upon a beautiful ballet of life.

    I miss my Lady and our straight Pony Play, I am afraid I won’t ever find another straight event or Lady like her.