Branding in Ponyplay


Branding is most typically associated with hot branding whereby a very hot piece of metal is pressed against the flesh to cause a burn and subsequent scarring. The scar prodcued will take the form of the brand and will be permanent (laser removal may be possible in some cases). Freeze branding is another option, but this type of branding relies on alteration of pigment producing hair cells and may not produce the desired result when used on humans (on body areas with areas of relatively low hair density).

A traditional branding iron is pre-cast in the shape of the final brand. The brand is heated and the entire desgin is transferred to the skin in a single application

Photo by Flickr user Derek Gavey (license: CC BY 2.0)

Branding is most commonly used on livestock to identify the owner of the animal and/or the breed. In ponyplay, branding serves a similar purpose. A brand in ponyplay can serve as a mark of ownership. It can also serve as a mark of status since certain brand designs/symbols might only be applied to animals of a particular breed and even then, perhaps only to animals representing the best of that breed.

Similar to other forms of body modification, branding is a form of body art and is not limited to either ponyplay or BDSM. While branding as a form of body art is not uncommon, care should be taken if you decide to perform any type of branding on yourself or your pony. Burns can easily become infected and applying a brand for too long can cause serious tissue damage.

Hot branding is performed in one of two major ways:

To incorporate strike branding into ponyplay, decide whether you wish to use a single strike type branding iron or using a thin piece of metal for multiple strike branding. While the former appeals to me most, the reality of using the single strike method requires design and production of a custom branding iron, which may not be feasible for most people involved in ponyplay. Moreover, the second method requires multiple applications of the extremely hot metal iron, which to some of us (read: me) has a certain appeal. However, the multiple strike method requires a steady hand and a pretty good eye to make sure overall design will come out as you hope.