HANGING OUT WITH MY HORSES – I find it fascinating how they choose what to do with their time!

First, as an aside, I’m making a formal plea for Hubby…  He needs to move off of Camp Roberts and into a living situation in the Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo area.  He is neat and clean, a military officer and would only be there (most times) 4 nights a week.  A warm bedroom, maybe a nice window, a clean bathroom, kitchen rights and a fairly quiet atmosphere so he could study – he is getting his Masters at Cal Poly – is all he’d need.  Hubby sometimes plays his guitar.    So, If you have a nice spare bedroom/bath room (or know someone who does) and would be gracious enough to open it up to Hubby (as we are trying to relocate all of us into a house down there in the near future) please let me know.  I would greatly, greatly appreciate any tips.  Craigslist is coming up empty and Hubby is quite frustrated.  Thank you!

HANGING OUT WITH MY HORSES – I find it fascinating how they choose what to do with their time!

Today, I let the barn horses (Bodhi, Remi, Rojo, Sam and Gwen) wander around the property.

I do this often.  These guys are my lawn mowers extraordinaire!

Except now, there is no more grass.  In California, as you all know, we cannot water anything.  So, the lawns are brown.  There is no foliage except for the established trees and bushes.

If there is nothing to eat…well then… what is a horse to do when let free?

I wanted to find out!


Sure, a horse doesn’t have the same experiences we do, so they don’t know the things we know (like glass windows will break if leaned upon…).  However, horses do ponder things from their perspective.  And, it is my opinion that they think/feel/emote all the time.

My way to watch my horses think, is to let them out with no food source.  The horses will want to stay in the ‘new’ area, but they’ll have to figure out what to do all day.

Here is my photojournal.

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As always, Remi comes straight over to me… She is so interesting. This girl has stared at me since the day she arrived. Yes, she wants food. But, she wants more. She wants to be girlfriends (girls that are friends), I’m convinced.

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Rojo flies up to the driveway and looks right at me, “Where’s the grass?  What happened to the grass?”

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Bodhi gets into mischief immediately… You can see my Starbucks cup, emptied and destroyed. It had been sitting on my car. He took it – and tried to throw it away in the garbage area? Not likely.

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I had just reprimanded Bodhi for messing with the garbage cans, so here he is looking misunderstood and dejected. Rojo has trotted up to the far pastures to look for grass.

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Remi has successfully gotten me to rub her chest – her favorite. Look at that smile!

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Remi heads for the shade (it is HOT here) and Gwen starts fleecing the apple tree.

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Rojo comes over to me again and asks where the food might be hiding…?

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Gwen, the loner, goes behind the house to eat whatever the oak trees might have left for her.

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Meanwhile, Tess has her lunch while riding her Theraplate. I keep her lunch in the cool refrigerator, so she is happy. You might notice the water puddles… they are from her misting fan that runs continuously to keep the Queen cool. She also has a huge pile of shaving for sleeping/resting.  We purposefully put the shavings on the Theraplate because the mister can make it slippery.a

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The ponies are always upset when other horses get to roam and they don’t… so today, I gave Dodger his favorite treat – running through the sprinklers!

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He loves to drop and roll in the fresh mud.

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And then get up and run in circles!

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Back down to roll…

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Back up…  Playtime is over.  Even California ponies need to conserve water.

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Bodhi is checking out stuff…

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Here he is, rubbing against a poor, dead apple tree. I need to remove that…

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After I went inside of the house, Bodhi decided to watch me.

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And then I saw Gwen at another window…

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Well, I didn’t want any broken windows so I shoo’d them away. But first, I took this photo.

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After shooing away the very inquisitive Bodhi and Gwen, I found the Mustang best friends (Rojo and Remi) drinking together.

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I noticed that Bodhi had moved over to the dog waterer and was looking at something…

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It was a frog.

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Smart, quiet Sam was over by the garden… trying to muster the courage to go inside the forbidden garden and eat the dry grass. (I usually never open the garden gate – but since we cannot water, it is dead anyway and needs cleanup.)

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Smart girl!  That’s a mustang!

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The other four gather on the front lawn.

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Bodhi continued to eat the apples off of the tree.

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A bit later, I found Bodhi and Remi at the barn, jealous that Mama Tess had lunch.

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Rojo decided to see what the commotion was about…

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I’m waiting for the squealing to start as the Mustangs and Bodhi get really close to the pony pen. As you can see, Rojo is headed directly for Slick, the Shetland.

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And my favorite shot of the day… here is Remi, in my rear view mirror. She is always, always near me. I love her. Well, I love them all…


OUR LAST MINUTE JULY BUCKET FUND!!  HELP SAVE THE ALMOST EXTINCT SKYROS HORSES!  They need funds immediately during the Greek Financial Crisis!  Please help keep them healthy during this critical time!  Click here to read the story!

There are very few Skyros horses left.  Only 40 on the island of Skyros!  Click image to read this story.

There are very few Skyros horses left. Only 40 on the island of Skyros! Click image to read this story.

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Only one comment so far...

  1. Sonya

    First of all, God bless you, your hubby, and your family, and thank you for your service to our great country.

    I used to let my babies (and I mean, babies) run around the front yard a bit. With all the construction going on and the bike riders, and barking dogs, and the donkeys across the street going off, it is a great way to desensitize them. I have to keep a sharp eye on them though. Babies can be impetuous, jumping up in mid-air and taking off simply for the joy of it… I have too many trailers and implements up front right now, so unless they are being led, it’s just begging for trouble. I have to put the equipment up, first. But still… It IS great fun to watch them sort stuff out as they “encounter” it.

    Also, all of them are quite helpful when I am working in their paddocks (fixing leaks, replacing posts, painting). One of my mares redesigned my tractor seat with air holes………! Any kind of duct tape over them is an exercise in futility, and simply not acceptable to her… So… I have air holes…

    With 12 head of horses/ponies on a bit over 4 1/2 acres (enjoyed your article about pasture paradise, by the way), you have to pick your battles.

    Many thanks for all you do!

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