Our Thoroughbred horses, one who is 22 years old and two who are 21 years old, causes you to think they are too old to want to get out of their fence anymore. Being content to just be lazy and enjoy their barn and paddock. They seem that way, until spring comes around. Spring causes our three mares to act silly and immature. Well, not Tawny, so much. She is part Thoroughbred and Shetland pony and seems to have the most sense. The other two, Georgie Girl and Dark Shadow are registered Thoroughbreds and half sisters, sharing the same father. They were bred for racing at a horse racing farm. Tawny is their niece, their brother being her father. Thoroughbreds are known for their spirit, and yes, our girls certainly have that. When we first got them, we used to be concerned that someone might try to steal them when we were not home. We live in the middle of the state forest in a very secluded area. Once we got to really know them, we used to laugh and say, “We’d come home to some dead guy out in the paddock after he tried to put one of those girls in a trailer!” Yes, that would be a fact.
When we brought them home from the farm where they were raised, where we were working, Georgie Girl, who had been raced and trailered often, refused to get into the trailer. Bill, the owner, put a rope on the ground behind her, she looked at him and the rope, then at me, and just pranced right up the ramp onto the trailer. She appeared to say, “I trust you. If you want me to get on this trailer, I will for you.” I never knew what he intended to do with the rope. Dark Shadow had never been on a trailer nor away from the farm. She had a huge crush on my husband. He just led her onto the trailer next to Georgie and she followed. Now that makes it sound like she is a quiet, well behaved horse, which was not the case. She was wilder than any of the stallions on the farm! She had never been worked with at all. She was definitely devoted to Larry and would do what he wanted her to do. Sometimes he had to work hard to get her to follow along, but in the end she would trust him and give to him.
Tawny didn’t come here till a couple of years later. For the first two years, Georgie Girl and Dark Shadow were not only sisters, but best friends. Still to this day, they are completely devoted to each other. Though Georgie is the boss mare, when she rules over Dark Shadow, that means Tawny will pay. Tawny being the smallest and last horse here, is at the bottom of the herd. So if Dark Shadow gets mad because Georgie has taken her hay away or some other reason, she will come looking for Tawny. I hate that it turns out that way for Tawny who wasn’t doing anything, but minding her own business. But that is way of the horse herd. Tawny will stand up to Georgie, but not Dark Shadow. Dark Shadow acts young and is very spirited and is quite the talker. She will yell out in the middle of the night, and at first it would worry me. I’d jump out of bed in a flash and run outside. Now I know that is her way. She will scream at Tawny or sometimes even at Georgie. That is the Thoroughbred horse way. After all, they are considered to be “hot-blooded” and bred to be spirited and bold and our two are definitely that.
The first stalks of green grass were poking through the lawn the other day and tempting Georgie Girl something awful. Here I was, sitting at my computer and when I look up, I see outside the bathroom window………a horse head! Uh oh! Out we go to find three horses running and bucking around in the yard. Well it seemed that Georgie was leaning into the fence trying to get the grass and the fence came down. I got Georgie and Tawny into the barn about to go through the gate to the paddock, when Dark Shadow comes around the side of the barn and doesn’t see either of them. She screams a loud horse scream……….out of the barn runs Georgie with Tawny on her heels. Needless to say, I was not successful getting them in. My husband managed to get them back inside and quieted down. They had torn up our yard since it wasn’t cold that day and the ground was soft. Now this morning it is very cold and the torn up ground was difficult for me to walk on. Hopefully, they won’t be getting out again!
Copyright © 2017 Kathleen G. Lupole
All Photographs Copyright © 2017 Kathleen G. Lupole