Monday, May 19, 2008
We have some new arrivals on the farm - Miniature horses! We've always had horses (or mules) on the farm - generally, a motley assortment of equines that for some reason needed a new home. I can remember a retired barrel racer, a jumping mule, and a few just plain horses and ponies. The last 2 we had, some of our long-time customers remember (and still ask about). They were old and mellow, and didn't actually want to leave the farm, so we took down the fences and let them roam at will, like really big dogs. But the last one passed away several years ago, and Donna has been waiting for the right time to get a horse or two on the farm again.
Well....a horse or two somehow turned into 3 adult miniature horses, one with a newborn baby, and the other two due to give birth!!! (The dark brown one in the top picture is due any moment now!)
Here's mom and baby. The baby is about a month old and is SUPER funny! She leaps, jumps, cavorts and generally has a fantastic time racing around being cute. They had names given to them at their old home, but, they don't seem to know them, so we're just taking some time and learning their personalities and figuring out what their names will be.
This beautiful girl has bright blue eyes!
The inter-species introductions were most humorous. For those of you that don't know, we have a total of 5 dogs that freely roam the farm, (2 are Maggies and 3 are Donnas), and a Canadian goose named Beaker that also roams at will, not to mention several (okay, lots) cats. Everyone generally gets along. Sometimes Beaker chases the cats, and sometimes the dogs chase Beaker, but it's all in good fun, no real harm is intended - it's mostly about pecking order and sheer onery-ness, I think. Oh, and Beaker thinks he is a person or a dog (we're not sure which), and does not identify in the slightest bit that he is a bird.
Anyway, most of the dogs are very large, and the horses are very small, so there was some initial inter-species confusion during the initial introduction. The picture above shows Ollie, a 110 lb mastiff mix, sniffing noses with one of the new minis. He sorta figured out she wasn't really a dog, but....the baby horse is only about 30 pounds, and prances around playfully. For the first day or so, all the dogs were trying to initiate playfullness with her in typical dog fashion - stomping paws, play-bowing, and racing around like dorks. She of course did not understand these strange motions. The baby horse thought they were really weird horses, and the dogs though she was a really stupid puppy. Everything has been resolved now, and Ollie and the baby have figured out that they can play games where she races around the pasture and he races around after; it's quite cute.