A Baby Story

Chapter Three: The Rhythms of Nature

The babies developed with their mothers for six months, then suddenly, Morning Star (the Paint mama) died, leaving a six-month-old orphan.

It was a sad morning when the horses were let out to the pasture to play with their friends and graze, and Sashe, the Paint baby, was alone trying to figure out who to follow. The other horses snubbed her and even kicked at her. So I became her surrogate father.

I spent extra time with her, walked her to the pasture every day, and even started to teach her some basic tricks, like standing on a pedestal and walking up the ramp of a truck. I also worked on jumping over barrels and basic side passing.

Sashe was able to be in an adjacent pasture from the other horses so she could learn socialization skills in a safe environment, across a fence. By eight months, she was able to briefly mix with the herd and become acquainted with the other babies, Tango and Angel II. The mothers were initially not so receptive to the newcomer, however, slowly but surely, Sashe worked her way into their hearts.

To further address loneliness by Sashe, she was stalled with an elder pony. This did not work quite the way we thought it would: they argued and fought like two little kids until they came to an agreement, “You eat from your bucket and I’ll eat from mine. Remember, NO SHARING.”

Now that Sashe was on her way to becoming a full-fledged member of the herd, my attention began to shift to scary Tango. If you remember, Tango’s mother warned him to run from me, so developing a relationship was going to be tough. I would go into the stall and site at the gate on a milk crate. By using Parelli’s friendly game with a long stick, I would run the mama and baby all over. This led to touching, then rubbing, then picking up all four feet, a task that was easy with Sashe.

Although progress was being made with Tango, he would still run around the stall trying to avoid me. I had to place a rope on his back and let it remain there while he ran. Once he relaxed, I was then able to place the rope around his neck in a large non-collapsing loop. He pulled and I pulled him sideways. He pulled again and I pulled him sideways next to me. Once he relaxed, I began to rub him.

I found (been taught) that the most powerful teaching technique with horses, children, and maybe wives, is to leave them alone once they do the right thing. This tug-of-war progressed to being able to lead him around the stall and then away from his mother.

This is the point where we are today. Both the babies are developing well. Sashe is growing tall and petite, while Tango, like his mother, is growing stout. We’ll keep you abreast of future progress and look forward to this summer for further development and to meet you one Saturday summer morning. You may even have your family or classmates visit our website and FaceBook page, and plan a trip this spring or summer!

Until then, Adios,
Silver Stan

Finally, a member of the herd.   Angel II running with the herd.
Daddy walking baby.


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