Monday, January 31, 2011

If you listen, they will tell you....

CCC left a comment on yesterdays post. "But I think I've learned most from the horses themselves. If I listen, they tell me.

This wonderful statement made me think about a couple equines that were not mine, that I connected to.

I was at our little county fair with my girls one year. Our horse barn was small at the time and there were tie stalls on the outsides of the old barn, boxes down the middle. This horse belonged to someone that I am friends with, but they were not in my 4-H club at the time. She was an old, jug headed, piebald, red roan mare. She was kind with her little rider and did her best. Despite her looks she was a kind dependable little horse. One of the afternoons, I walked by her stall and she looked at me. Really looked at me, and pawed at her hay. I looked and it was poor hay, it looked moldy, and she clearly wasnt happy. She looked at me again and pawed at her hay again. Oh I wanted with all my heart to give her fresh clean hay. That is one time a "connection with an animal hit me with a force I can not describe" I did go and find her owner and told her about the hay, I believe she got some different hay for her. I learned a few years later that the mare had gotten into the barn and some how got herself impaled on the forks on top of  a CAT blade, that was parked in the barn. I was really saddened when I heard about how she passed on. I will never forget her for "telling me" something was wrong.

The other equine, was a 17 hand red dun Mule. A friend owned her and two others. He asked me if my daughter and I could go up and clean up the Mules, as he had someone who was interested in buying them. He even offered to pay us to do it, so we thought OK, cant be to hard. The Mules were in a small muddy pen, looked like they had been in there for awhile. I found out later that it was because they kept going through the barbed wire fence and wouldnt stay in the pasture. Thats mules for you! We had been up there before and my daughter and friend had ridden the mules, after I had helped him get them all outfitted with tack. He had bought them to use for hunting, and did take them a couple times, but didnt use them the rest of the year. He did keep them up to date on hoof trims and stuff.  I didnt connect with her that first time, but this time, Molly looked me in the eye and told me she wanted out of that pen, and even tried to show me where to let her out, it was the darnedest thing. My daughter and I we did the best we could, but they really needed out of the pen, and a hose to get them cleaned up, and we couldnt get the gate open to get them out. She was a pretty mule, big! I had seen her move in the pasture on a different day, when they wouldnt let my friend catch them, she looked smooth, for such a big girl.  She too had an unfortunate end. My friend sold the mules to an outfitter in Idaho, his dad hauled them all the way over there to the new owner. My friend told me a year later that one of the outfitters, hired hands, had taken Molly through a creek with a tie down on, an drowned her. At this point I could really say a whole bunch of expletives, but it wouldnt do her any good. She is the one mule that I would have liked to have owned.

I had to share these stories, I have been carrying them for a long time. Animals really can talk to you if you really listen. I always pay attention to my horses little nuances, its how I caught when Mickey had a colic episode one time, and was able to get her through that. thats another story, but with a happy end. It takes me about two seconds to flick my eyes over each horse and access their condition, it something I do without thinking about it.

Have you had moments, times, when you have had some inexplicable connection with a horse?


  1. Tragic ends for both those animals ,how sad. But how great that at least whe you met them they had a person to listen .
    I agree with you and CCC,there is far more to be learned from the horses themselves if we will take the time to listen

  2. Oh my very sad end to both. I am a firm believer if you listen, watch a pay attention, you can learn from animals. Heck even people say alot when they aren't talking. lol Just stopped by to say HELLO! Missed it to much had to come back to this blog world:)

  3. Those two stories made me terribly sad. They reminded me of my Rojo, who wasn;t really mine, but told me with his eyes, that he wanted to be.
    He didn't want to be owned by his ignorant owner/pretend cowboy and ridden every week as a roping horse at the rodeos. He wanted to be a trail horse and carry around little girls. He adored my daughter and he fell in love with my llamas. He was a kindred soul and my heart still aches the night he severed his leg and I watched his last moment alive. He was a beautiful animal and a very special. Rojo will always hold a special place in my heart.


  4. Thanks Train Wreck!! It great to have you back!

    Oh Lisa, I remember the pain and anguish when you posted about Rojo, it is so very hard to see something like that.

  5. Sad about both those animals. There are so many untold stories like that out there. The thought makes me cringe.

    My horses are pretty expressive and are always telling me something. That part is fun so I am always looking and watching for what they think. The night that Vee had the twins it was the look in her eye that told me she was in labor. She was just standing there quietly but that look was different. She was not as content as she looked. Only when I checked the straw for moisture did I find her water had not only broke but had been for two long with no sign of a foal. That look probably saved that mare and her babies.

  6. Rising Rainbow, Wow, isnt it wonderful how we can see/feel what they need, is that intuition? or understanding? Hmmm I dont know.

  7. What sad stories - it breaks my heart. I connected with my mare and was able to buy her a few years later. This summer, she connected with my son and very clearly let us know that he was "her" human. I love that little mare 'o mine :)

    Also came over to tell you that you won a give away on Girls With Guns. Shoot me your snail mail address and I'll get your swag in the mail!


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