Yes, I can lay down under him and I do trust him.
But what about the 2 swirls on his head and the long wheat sheath swirl on his neck that make him unpredictable you ask.
The time when I shouldn't trust this horse is on the trail. I have been thrown 2 times and one time I got 9 stitches. So he has a tag on his bridle "In case of no rider call xxx-xxx-xxxx" I have my cell phone in my boot.
Am I crazy? Probably.
At home he is a total sweetheart.
In this photo he is taking a nap in the door leaving more hoof damages.
Yes, it is.
Size 4 to be exact.
For those of you who don't understand shoe sizes in horses an average horse has a size 0 or a 1.
I measured his hoof it is 5" 1/4 wide & 6" long. Why dose he have those clips on his shoes?
His foot is so big that it helps hold shoe in place and so he won't walk right out of them.
Here you can see the carbide that is on his shoes that causes all of that damage.
Here it is the money shot! And that white spot is the indentation of when he tried to poke his eye out with a stick. A 2 for one shot.
I wonder if he sees that spot in his vision or if he doesn't realize it is there.
Ah, the pleasure of being donkey. We have a law here in my city the it is illegal to raise dust. Yea right try and tell that to Dino. I can't wait till code enforcement come by and try to give me a citation for raising dust! I know I am exaggerating but it is a very funny thought.
I swear he thinks he is a chicken. I have never known an animal to take so many dirt baths as much as a chicken.
Donkey, Well he is getting better about the camera in his face. It has taken him some time to learn that I am just one strange woman with this little black box.
This is the first time he let me get close enough. Horse on the other hand I can get an inch from his eye and he will just stand there.
If we are lucky I will get those $ shots without me in the reflection. Any tips on how to take that shot, I am all ears.
Don't worry I will get to ear shots:)
I love eyes and they are damn hard to take a photo of. I am always in the reflection. I want to see deep into the eye. Horses eyes have these peaks and valleys of color it is almost like an exploding volcano.
One Day I will figure out the trick but in the mean time I will keep trying and trying till I get THAT SHOT.
And that reminds me horse almost poked his eye out with a branch a few years ago he has a small indentation in his eye. I will try to capture that for you all.
Good ole, Dino. What can I tell you about this ass. That is just what he is an Ass. And a very smart ass at that. He is very clever but not that he will let you know that those gears are turning in that fluffy head of his. He doesn't have the wonderful heart shaped lips so no he isn't a very outgoing personable animal he is more reserved. He is still young and learning the rules of being around people and what is and isn't acceptable.
We now have a new game of hide the cookies around the pasture while horse eats his dinner that donkey isn't allowed to eat. So I try to keep this persistent little shit preoccupied while horse eats.
I have had donkeys before but this one is the most destructive inquisitive little shit I have ever met.
But Horse loves him, Dino is doing his job keeping my neurotic horse happy.
When I first got this horse he had some things I could quite figure out why I knew I shouldn't quite trust him then I realized it was the 2 swirls between his eyes and the long wheat sheath swirl on his neck.
Do you see the 2 swirls those are a good indication that he is flighty.
And the Wheat sheath they are normally not that long. And this is also a warning sign that this horse is unpredictable.
Example; on the trail there will be a new flower that bloomed OMG that is SCARY! And I must jump up as high as I can and Be Very Afraid! Do NOT pass Go do not collect $100.
I mean really dude be for reals. It is a damn flower. No, it wont bite and yes it is new. Congrats you have been paying attention. It is times like these I can not trust this horse, I must be on my toes at all times. Basically, I need to pay more attention then him and predict what is new and what will trigger the flight effect. I have been thrown by this HUGE puppy dog and have received 9 stitches from his acts of temporary insanity. If you asked me if I trust this horse with my life I would say YES
Back to swirls...
Normally a horse will have 1 swirl and that is a good thing for reliability, 2 swirls beware, 3 swirls watch you ass, they are a handful. What I mean by that you can't take a nap or not be on your toes working with an animal who has more than one swirl. But there are other qualities that can help cancel this out some for example Chester here has the heart shaped lip to make him personable and he is super intelligent he has many other great positive qualities that make him more trust worthy.
Swirls all over the body of a horse I wouldn't turn my back on him.
Some of this is according to the Bedouin folklore on horses. Basically wife-tales but there are reasons for those also.
I attached a link to a book that I read by Linda Tellington-Jones and for me it was telling me in words what I knew instinctively.
Do you see the heart shape of his upper lip? Let me tell you about the wonderful qualities of a horse with a heart shaped lip they are all very people oriented animals, very friendly and mouthy and very smart. A Personality Plus! What I mean by mouthy is that these animals will want to chew on you and are very expressive with their lips. Chester likes to unzip my jacket and he is constantly trying to undress me. He likes to nibble on my rear. My god my horse is a flirt, maybe he has a crush on me! Haha
No, he doesn't it is a typical type of thing these animals with this lip conformation do.
I always look for a horse with such shaped muzzle I know that they will love to have interactions with me and I can play around with them.
If it wasn't for donkey ripping the windows out I would have never gotten this great shot of horse. Damages again.
This also leads us into conformation and personalities.
How conformation tells us about the horses personality and intelligence.
Do you see how pointed and well set his ears are? That is the sign of a horse who is intelligent and alert.
If his ears were wider set apart and more rounded on the tips he would be a great trail horse, Bomb proof and also not very smart he will do what you tell him and he will never question you because he just won't give a damn.
The wrinkles above his eyes also mean he is very alert and inquisitive. His eyes are large properly set in his head. If they were too far forward he would be spooky from the rear and too far back on the side of his head he would be a klutz because he couldn't see in front of himself.
I realize I am going off on some strange tangent. But this album cover from
Einstuerzende Neubauten - Haus Der Lüge has been etched in my mind for years and when I saw Dino pissing, I had to take this photo. Lumix Lx3
But for horse and donkey the best way for them to get rid of their baggage is you help them with a bottle of Show Sheen and a hair brush.
The show sheen smooths the hair follicle and the bur looses its grip and it slips right out. I wish there was a bottle of Show Sheen for my little burs and splinters to get rid of my baggage so easily. But if was as easy as a bottle and brush we would never really learn and we would make one man very rich.
NOTE: And what ever you do DO NOT put Show Sheen where you place you saddle, Saddle will slip right off your horses back and you will land on your ass!
I was once told that cockle burs were the inspiration for velcro. I do not know if that is true But to me it is logical if you look at a bur they do have little hooks. Burs latch on to everything, even skin and you can even get a splinter from a bur. Just a little reminder that once it decided to go for a ride on you and that even tho you thought you got rid of it , It is still somehow there.
Baggage is the same way and tough one to get rid of. There will always be some little reminder that it was there and I call them triggers. The thing is to realize what those triggers are so you won't repeat your pattern and then low and behold you have changed your pattern, the trigger and baggage are gone.
Well, this photo comes under a few headings for me. Shenanigans and Baggage.
1st off he gets into everything because he is so nosey. And Baggage we all have it and burs to me are baggage if you don't remove them they will get deeper into your fur and are hard to get rid of, same as a problem. Get to the root of it so it won't follow you the rest of your life and drop its little seeds to make more. Remove the baggage before it gets out of control, I say.
Anatomy lesson again. This is donkeys chestnuts and lack there of. Now a horse has them on all 4 legs, Donkeys on the other hand do not, only on the front. I find this fascinating. Zebras are like a donkey they don't have them either on the hind legs plus their hoofs are the same and they speak the same language. Ok well, kind of the Zebra speaks in a different dialect. haha
here is a link for ya http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chestnut_(horse_anatomy)
Here you can see this is where Chester prefers to nap and Dino has just discovered that I have a stall also. It will only be a matter of time till I have to put up the barrier to keep him out of my stall.
I explained earlier the horse is missing some molars. When he eats his pellets and vitamins it becomes a Well, a peanut butter type mash and gets it stuck in the spaces of missing teeth. He goes through this daily ritual of trying to pick out his food with his tongue and lots of licking. I was able to catch this with single shots a few seconds apart.
What could this be classified as? Well, I was thinking shenanigans or damage or just one Damn nosey donkey who is just like a 2yr old with a crayon and a wall.
I have been trying to catch him getting into things like he does Always but I never have till yesterday. That little shit he gets into everything. Who needs raccoons, a 2 yr old old or a dog who gets into everything. I have Dino!
Mr. Destructive, But I must add he makes me laugh and who needs this box anyways I guess he needed the fiber.
This here is Damage from horses shoes in front of the door where he likes to nap. He has cracked the flagstone and well it is scared forever.
Chester weighs a whopping 14oo lbs. I have carbide put on his shoes so he won't slip on the pavement on the way to the greenbelt where are ride. The carbide grips like a MoFo and here is the proof of the damage is causes. He twists his hind feet when we walks so you can see if we rode by on the pavement from his marks on the road.
He is an easy one to track from his hoof prints. There are some folks we know who walk the greenbelt and know his tracks and have told us they were looking for us because of his tracks distinctive tracks he leaves .:)
This is what I was greeted with the other morning. I have much more to say about this photo but I'm gonna be late for work if I tell you now!
This is called Flemhen response/reaction.
Horses and as you can see donkeys do it when they smell something unfamiliar and want to try and figure out what the smell is. You will see it most commonly in a stallion when he has just sniffed a mare to see if she is in season. Chester did this once to a mare who like him and once he flemhed that was it she would have nothing to do with him. She tried to bite and kick him. So in the animal world as in our world when a man acts in such a way, that is it well will have nothing to do w/ ya. Haha
Why Dino did this when he walked out of the stall? I can only imagine he stuck his nose down the skunk hole that is in their stall. I came in one morning to feed and I kiss them both on their velvet noses and Dino smelled like skunk. Good thing I don't find skunk an offensive smell.
I talked about the chestnut on horse's leg earlier above. As our daily ritual I sit on my computer next to the backdoor & horse and donkey are in the backyard grazing. Well, horse likes to come and hang out with me. He will open backdoor stick his head in and hang out with me and take a nap. He as I said, thinks he is human and he would come in the house if he could so hanging out with his head in the house is good enough for him. But those are other photos, tangents and stories.
I just happen to look at his hind leg and I saw he had a chestnut that was naturally peeling off like they would in the wild or ungroomed world. Not that I don't groom horse, we just don't ride as much anymore due to our ages and health issues so grooming is less Plus he likes to be dirty. So I grabbed my camera and took these shots, & yes, little Hammer will get his treat, horse chestnut and I do give him dried horse hoofs.
Here is a ball of hay that got stuck in the gap where the teeth are missing. At first I thought he was like a little kid spitting out the food that didn't taste good. But then when I observed him I realized that it was from the lack of teeth, and his molars are well there just ain't much left on those old teeth for grinding up food. So I find these pretty little balls all over the place.
I find this an interesting photo. Here you can see the fur that is on his lips to hold the food in and his inner lip has such an interesting texture. Also you can see here it looks like he has a split tongue, He would talk if he could. I really don't think anyone did this to see if it would work on a horse. I will assume that it is that way from him folding up his tongue to suck on it like a pacifier. I will get photos of him doing that.
Yes, I'm still on teeth. And I will tell you this. Do as I say and not as I do. Never put your fingers in a horses mouth, Feed flat handed. Yes, it is a good rule of thumb. I will say I totally trust horse is the most gentlest creature I have ever known. I still use precautions, we have an agreement. He is my friend and a big puppy dog or human as he thinks he is. And he loves the camera unlike Donkey.
Here are more of his exercises. These will stretch out his spine, withers and neck muscles. There are some days he can go only 1/2 this far and on those days he doesn't like to be ridden because his back is hurting.
Due to Horse being a retired show horse. He was in his hay day showed Dressage made it to the Grand Prix level and won horse of the year 5 times. That is not something to sneeze at. He has his old sports injuries and to keep him flexible we do our daily stretching exercises with cookies of corse. This is one he dose on his own thinking he will get a treat.
I had to share with everyone the morning call I get from these two. Dino has such a powerful voice you can feel it in your chest and it is very healing. It warms my heart and makes me happy no matter what my mood. And the neighbors can hear him a mile away, Hahaha
Mr. Wonderful as many of us call him. I love this photo he looks like a giraffe and here you can see his long teeth. When a horse gets older his front teeth start to move forward and out & become very sharp. Yep he will have buck teeth as sometime.