Since Sinbad left, we’re in need of a new backup horse. I have to admit, I’m still nervous about riding Moonshine so I need another horse to ride until we figure out what to do with her. This is a great time to be a horse buyer because the combination of the closure of the slaughterhouses and the high price of hay from last year has led to a lot of owners selling. Of course, that’s not good for horse owners who are strapped for cash or have too many horses. If you’ve been reading our blog, you realize we’re the kind of horse owners who have trouble getting rid of horses. So this next horse has got to be a keeper and for that we’re willing to spend some time looking. So far we’ve found some sellers in our area with beautiful horses that we could practically get for free, but we’re not jumping in too fast this time.
So what am I looking for? I want a horse 15 years old or younger that’s easy to ride and not aggressive. I’m embarrassed to say this but looks matter. If I’m going to be stuck with this beast for my ridable life, I want it to look good to help me look good. I need all the help I can get. A solid black to match Valentine or a solid white to contrast him, would be nice. I love colored paints, too. Besides that I’m not sure if I want a gaited horse or not. It would be nice to have another Tennessee Walking Horse so Mikki and I could ride at the same gait and learn together. But I really like the smoother cantor and trot of non-gaited horses.
A search of Craigslist revealed candidate 1. I will call her “Snowball” (I would find a new name if she’s the chosen one). Snowball is a 3 year old cremello Tennessee Walking Horse, about 15 HH. She has a gentle disposition and was easy to ride, obeying all of my commands on a hair-trigger. I didn’t have to force her to do anything, except when I tried to pull her away from the gate at feeding time. She’s cremello in color and not albino. Apparently albinos have gene issues. Cremellos aren’t actually white but the color looks white. I think Snowball would make a nice addition to our herd and she seems easy to ride. Here are my concerns with her:
1) She’s a mare and we already have a strong-headed mare in our pasture. With no paddocks, we have no way to separate them if they decide to kill each other. Also, some mares, like Moonshine, don’t like to be touched or ridden when in season.
2) She’s not a registered TWH. I don’t plan on showing her or breeding her but if things didn’t work out and we wanted to sell her one day, lack of registration could make her less attractive.
3) She’s young, though she doesn’t seem too spirited. It’s hard to tell with one visit, though.
So she’s on the list. We’ll be back to ride her more and if she’s the one, we’ll work something out where she could be returned to the current owner if there are problems within the first week or two. She’s kinda pretty, huh?