My lil’ red pony, Tawny!
I always tell people, you don’t have to
raise livestock to be a homesteader. That is true. I don’t raise any livestock for food. Though someday, I may add a small flock of laying hens. Other than that, I really don’t want a lot of animals to take care of. We do have horses though. It was a dream of mine to have horses and when we moved here, we first bought two, then added one more two years later.
Georgie Girl napping in the barn
Georgie Girl won my heart. I was helping my husband at his job where he worked with and trained racehorses. Georgie Girl was a horse that had been banned from the track and was kind of crazy at times. So her stall was kept covered so she could not stick her head out. When I first saw her, I thought she was the most beautiful horse I had ever seen.
Dark Shadow is my husband’s horse. She bonded with him at the horse farm where he worked. Nobody else could ride her, train her, doctor her or trim her hooves. She developed a sort of crush on my husband. Yes! She really did! I could see her watching him constantly. If she had any sort of problem she would always look to him to take care of it. She still does that.
The Boss Mare, “Georgie Girl”
Many people think the stallion is the head of the horse herd. It is really the alpha or boss mare. She is the one who turns other horses out of the herd, even a stallion. The herd will depend on a stallion for protection, but he is not the boss of the herd. Our horse, Georgie Girl was the boss mare at the farm we worked. No horse ever stood up to her, and she took over the herd on her own from another horse.
Tawny laying down in the snow.
Tawny is a Thoroughbred/Shetland cross. I love her look! And her personality. She is a hugger and will greet visitors here, hoping they have a treat for her. As for a little worker, she is quite lazy, but when made to do something will do it. She could be used for work, such as hauling stuff, or pulling a plow or wagon. My husband rode her into our state forest a few years ago, looking for a missing man.
- Firewood Work!
One valuable reason for having horses is the precious manure they give us. Yes, I am serious! Our garden produces a lot of healthy vegetables. That is directly related to our rich compost, that we mix into our dirt every year in the garden. The compost comes from our horses’ manure. So they contribute to our food supply!
Copyright © 2013 Kathleen G. Lupole
All Photographs Copyright © 2012 Kathleen G. Lupole