The Near Side: This Week in Horses — September 4, 2015


Hello and happy Friday, everyone! Here’s what you and your barn buddies will be discussing during the upcoming long weekend.

  • I love any story about animals helping animals, and I know you do, too. Here’s one about a rescued Arabian mare and her seeing-eye donkey.
  • Here’s a less heartwarming donkey tale about a randy donkey stud named Clarence who broke out of his enclosure to meet a new mare, then proceeded to terrorize the town of Mt. Juliet, Tennessee. My favorite part of this story is the amusement the news anchors got from it.
  • A lifeguard on Assateague Island involuntarily demonstrated why it’s important to stay away from the island’s wild ponies this week. To be fair, it looks like this pony had invited himself over to a family picnic, and the lifeguard was trying to shoo him away, but he underestimated the pony’s strike zone.
  • Horse Kicks Lifeguard on Beach

    The human/horse interaction that was captured here over the weekend is a stark reminder of the power and unpredictability of wild horses. These types of interactions can happen in an instant, even to National Park Service personnel who have been trained to move horses from the beach. Help prevent this scenario from happening in the first place by folllowing these simple tips:* Please do not make food or water available to the horses.* When possible, keep food safely stored in a vehicle. If food must be brought to the beach, store it in a sturdy zippered bag or in a cooler that is secured shut with a strap.* Give the horses their space. Move at least a bus length away when a horse approaches. Do not try to save your belongings; wait until the horse is out of the area.*Wild horses communicate. Watch for pinned ears and sudden movements, as they indicate agitation that can lead to kicking and biting.Unfortunately, incidents like this happen every year. The lifeguard in the video suffered minor abrasions but was otherwise unhurt. Regardless of your comfort level around horses remember that the wild horses are powerful, unpredictable animals.

    Posted by Assateague Island National Seashore on Wednesday, September 2, 2015

  • A horse town like Wellington, Florida, home of the Winter Equestrian Festival, generates a lot of manure. It seems some shady dealers were removing the piles from horse farms—for a fee—and then dumping their haul on vacant lots. But now, 80 percent of that manure is going to fertilize sugar farms elsewhere in Florida. So just think, the Halloween candy you’ll be consuming soon owes its sweetness to those fancy Wellington Warmbloods!
  • After his disappointing loss in the Travers Stakes last weekend, American Pharoah’s racing career could have ended. Fortunately for the Triple Crown winner’s many, many fans, his owner has announced that AP will continue on to the Breeders’ Cup this fall.
  • Racehorses who aren’t American Pharoah retire every day, of course. This two-part news report highlights one organization that rehabs retired racers while providing equine assisted counseling for local kids.
  • Two new police-horses-in-training in Albuquerque need names. Offer your suggestions for these handsome Percherons over on the Albuquerque PD Facebook page.
  • Help APD Name Newest Members of Horse Mounted Unit!APD has two new members, but they don’t have names. We need help!…

    Posted by Albuquerque Police Department on Thursday, September 3, 2015

  • And finally, this vocab word which I encourage you to use in a sentence this weekend. Personally, I’m delighted to finally know the word for the equestrian discipline that Snoopy and I are currently perfecting.

That’s it for this week. Have a great Labor Day weekend!

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Leslie Potter is Sr. Associate Web Editor of Follow her on Twitter: @LeslieInLex.




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