Thursday, November 29, 2012

More herd watching

Once again, Chico is the first (only) horse that comes to investigate me as I wander about the pasture.

He sure does have some wonderfully expressive soft eyes.  I love this horse with all my heart, even when he's naughty and rambunctious.  Usually he's a pretty darn good horse.  My only concern with him is the tripping he occasionally does on his hind foot.  He sometimes catches his toe as he's walking and stumbles.  I worried that he might catch it wrong someday and really seriously injure it.  As is now, I think it is just stiff, but I'm planning to do some more entensive lameness evaluation in him as I learn how in school.

 I love the backlighting in the following photos.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Herd watching

I took a walk in the pasture with my dogs and cat the other day.  The winter sunlight is great for photos with its constant low angle in the sky.  This was shortly after noon.  The horses of course saw me and were interested, then they heard the crunching of the dogs and cat in the woods behind me and were even more interested.
Kachina especially was all riled up about the critters in the woods.

The others just herded up, deciding whether or not to come investigate.

Catlow finally decided she needed to check things out, so she strided right out confidently, quickly passing Kachina (who is too chicken to actually check things out on her own).

My gorgous Catlow broke into a trot...

Then into a canter as she came up the hill.

She passed me right by to get to where she could hear the cat creeping through the trees.

The rest of the herd followed rather calmly.

Boss mare Cody wasn't about to be left behind.

 Kachina was still all kinds of riled up by the situation...she usually is.

Once they all made it to the top of the hill and were satisfied with the identity of the pasture invaders, then Chico decided I was finally interesting and was the first to come and greet me.

Griffin decided maybe he should chase the cat.  I know he would stomp and kill one if given the right opportunity.  He'd do it to my dogs too.  Most of the time he tolerates the presence of other critters in his pasture, but he does chase them too.  I don't really need to worry about predators with him around.  I wonder what he'd do to our cows...probably run them and be very mean to them.  I've seen my horses chase deer and foxes out of the pasture before.

Catlow is one of those horses who just has a gentle soul through and through.  She never chases other animals (she does assert her authority over Griffin and Kachina though, but not in a nasty way...only when needed).

My trusty companions...
Sometimes its nice to just go out in the pasture and for a walk in the woods with no particular agenda at all.  I love my horses, but it is also nice to just be able to be out there and watch them without really interacting with them at all.  Lately, I've been riding some (bareback when I do), but mostly just spending time with them near their hay...brushing and picking out hooves.  Catlow, normally a standoff-ish horse, is all over me when I'm out there just to love on them. 

Something interesting in the trail?