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Galway's Molly to swap the west for Dubai

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NEW LIFE: Mattie Kennedy with Molly, a Shetland pony who flies off to sunnier climes in Dubai this week. Photo: Ray Ryan

NEW LIFE: Mattie Kennedy with Molly, a Shetland pony who flies off to sunnier climes in Dubai this week. Photo: Ray Ryan

NEW LIFE: Mattie Kennedy with Molly, a Shetland pony who flies off to sunnier climes in Dubai this week. Photo: Ray Ryan

She is a pretty little Galway girl but Molly the filly takes to the skies this week flying from the stormy and wet West of Ireland to a life of leisure in the sunnier climes of Dubai.

Molly is a tiny four-year-old Shetland pony and when the Kilbannon, Co Galway skewbald, who is only six hands high, gets off the Emirates flight in Dubai she will be quite a contrast to the race horses, mostly 17 hands high, also disembarking from the plane.

Farmer Mattie Kennedy from Cloonkeely, Kilbannon is her breeder and he is pleased that Molly will be a lady of leisure in Dubai as a family pet for a Kuwaiti businessman and his wife and children.

Mattie's neighbour Karen Connolly who works in bloodstock sales, shipping and public relations, organised the deal.

She had previously done PR work, marketing and web management for the Dubai-based businessman and his family.

"When he told me that he wanted a pony that would be 'about the size of a sheep' as a pet for his children I immediately thought of the Shetland ponies that Mattie Kennedy was breeding," says Karen.

Mattie Kennedy, who has been breeding Shetland ponies for over eight years, also says he is delighted that Molly will be going to a life of leisure in the sunshine.

"I never thought this little filly would be flying so far away. She has to go by boat to England first and then by plane from Heathrow to Dubai," says Mattie.

Mattie and his wife Margaret say their 10 grandchildren will miss Molly but the little Galway lady will probably not miss the rain in the round tower village of Kilbannon as she starts a new life close to the much higher skyscrapers of Dubai.

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