Sunday, September 2, 2007

A Baby Boomer Gets on with Her Dream of Arabian Horses Part 6 The Rain

Getting on with the Dream Part 1

When it was finally time to put the horses back into the barn for the day, the frightened Arabian filly was still standing on the concrete pad in front of the barn. It would actually take days before she tried to venture off on her own.

Even when the horse did finally get the nerve to take a step, the slightest sound or movement would send her frantically back to the concrete. I wanted to use the word safety in referring to the concrete but it really didn't apply. Even though she would stand on the concrete it was only because the horse could not figure out how to get back inside the barn to her stall. That is the only place that she felt safe.

Just a couple of days after we picked up the Arabian mare and brought her home, we had some light rain in the afternoon. I immediately headed out to the barn to be sure that Heiress was ok.

Only part way out to the barn, I could already hear the clatter. The poor horse was trying to climb up the door of the barn in her attempt to get in out of the rain.

I grabbed a halter to put on the mare so I could lead her inside but as I approached her the horse nearly went over the top of me. Instinctively I smacked her on the shoulder with the end of the lead without really thinking. The horse gave me a look that said "Who in the H _ _ _ do you think you are?" as she kicked me.

It all happened so fast, I barely had time to jump back. thankfully, I did get a little distance between us because the mare kicked me so hard even the bone in my leg was bruised. Had I not moved at all, the blow would probably have broken my leg.

I went after the horse as dramatically as I could wanting to make a serious impression. She needed to know it wasn't ok to be kicking me or anyone else. Inside I felt only sadness for this poor mare who had been raised in captivity with none of the skills to survive there.

The already frightened horse's eyes were now literally bulging out of her head. Still desperately wanting in out of the rain, she was now frightened of me as well. Pushing the horse away from me, so I could even get a halter on her, I talked softly to her trying to give her some reassurance.

When I finally did get the halter in place, I opened the barn door carefully. I had been doing some work with the horse teaching her how to give to pressure and not charge through it in the preceding days. Thankfully, she began responding to that work.

I was able to prevent her from charging into the barn. Once the horse realized she was heading towards her stall she settled down and walked quietly into the barn. This horse was definitely smart, she picked up things so quickly.

Once inside the stall I checked the horse over carefully. The mare had several raw bleeding spots on her legs and chest and even a nose bleed from her experience of climbing the barn wall trying to save herself from nothing more than a light rain.

To this day Heiress does not like rain. Usually she will just scream to come inside. Sometimes the horse will work herself into a foaming sweat but she no longer challenges fences, barn walls or me, thank god!

This is one of several very serious lessons the mare went through with me. The first month I owned her, she bit me, kicked me and knocked me senseless, nearly getting me killed. Another day, I will post more about this mare and her story but for now it's time to continue on with the dream. In the next post we will get back to Scandalous and the impending foal.

Baby Boomer Continues


  1. I'm astonished that someone so concerned about people 'abusing' his horses could possibly think it was OK to keep a horse in such a way as to prevent it from just being a horse!

    Thank god you found her and were willing to take her on.

  2. Oh my! Glad you survived those encounters!! And what a horrible tragedy for that horse to freak out with such a light rain. Poor baby!!

  3. yes, ro, I could spend a bundle of posts explaining to you the logic behind this but suffice it to say, the doctor believed that he was protecting his horses by keeping them in stalls.

    When I get back to her story later I will tell how I tried to help educate him to the errors of that thinking.

    equinespirit, I'm glad I survived to, although there were days I wasn't sure I was going to. I don't think I would be up to such a challenge today.

  4. The idea of keeping any horse enclosed in a stall 24/7, not to mention a high energy, young Arabian, is pathetic. Weaving and chewing are two outcomes I've observed in bored animals. But I'm also stumped how she could develop physically at all without enough movement. She certainly is an exquisite beauty, however.
    (The vision of a caged Border Collie is what I see here.)

  5. I am so glad you found the mare and took her in!

    amazing how people treat thei horses isnt it? sometimes Ijust want to knock them up side the head.