Pooh Bear. The Tedmeister. Bubba. Beezer. Any of these names sound familiar? They’re nicknames that have been lovingly attached to real life horses. While a horse may sport a fanciful name on its registration papers, or compete under a prestigious moniker, it’s most likely better known around the barn by a more personalized nickname. That’s because it’s rather awkward to snuggle up to a horse and coo, “How are you today, RH Fancy Frosted Zipped With Chips?”
Other horses end up with nicknames that bear no relation to their official name. Yet after some investigation they seem appropriate. For example, one gray Trakehner mare had the registered name of Like Stardust. But her nickname was Bunny because she was foaled on Easter Sunday. Then there are horses whose nicknames collectively resemble roll call in a kindergarten class. Nearly every large stable is home to a Jason, Oliver or Sam, or a Penny, Katie or Maggie.
Physical traits can also prompt nicknames. A horse with an alias like Eeyore or Floppy probably has a set of remarkable ears.
And where would the horse world be without equine nicknames that are just plain silly? Goofy words like Pookster, Snuggums and Winkie just seem to fit a particular horse and, once uttered—perhaps as a joke—they stick. Forever.
Regardless of their origins, the nicknames we attach to the horses we own and ride are meant as terms of endearment. We’re eager to call the horses we love by a special name because it demonstrates that special bond between horse and human. So for this edition of HI Spy we’d like to know the nicknames you’ve given to some of the horses in your life. Be sure to include how you arrived at the nickname, even if it seems silly or sentimental. Trust us. Fellow horse people will understand. Just click on Submit a Comment below and share how you played the Nickname Game. Some of the comments may appear in an upcoming issue of Horse Illustrated.
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