Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Driving Miss Sadie

Big excitement at Papa Johns Farm. We have a new addition to the menagerie. Meet Sadie the Amish cart pony.

We met Sadie in early September on a trip up to Ohio. She lived on a farm with goats, sheep, and just about every size equine, from the tiniest miniature horses to Percherons. Now those are some gigantic horses. Last weekend, we traveled back to Ohio to her farm to pick her and her rig up. Here she is hitched to her cart. She is very good on the roads, even 18 wheelers do not phase her.

Ponies are measured in inches. Horses are measured in "hands". Sadie stands 48 inches tall at the withers. In horse measurements, that makes her technically 12 hands. There are 4 inches for every "hand", for anyone who is wondering. Any equine under 14 hands is considered a pony. I've always wanted a horse. I also know I can't handle a horse. So a well trained pony is exactly what I needed.

At her farm, Sadie was in a dry lot with six other ponies. They had all the hay they wanted, water, and grain twice a day, but they were on dirt. One of the ways horses cope with flies is to roll in the dust. If your coat is thick with dust the flies can't bite you. While we were loading her, it rained, so she had a coat of mud. On the way home we had more rain. So by the time she got home, she was good and dirty. Of course as she began to feel at home, she had herself another good roll in the dirt. I've spent a lot of time in the past couple of days brushing dirt out of her hide, but today I decided it was time for a good bath. Sadie really enjoys grooming, but I was not sure how she was going to do. Turns out, once you get past the fact that it is cold water, it's all good. We used "Mane, Tail, and Body" Shampoo. Worked up a good lather, rinsed and scraped her, and she looked great. I took her out to the front yard for a little grazing, and then I spent some time combing out her mane and tail.

Here is a short video of me driving her in the front yard. We have actually had her out on back roads during the day, and we are having such a good time with her. She is so well trained it is a pleasure to have her out on the road.


Cindy Keiger said...

Feeding troughs, helicopters, new pony ... you guys are BUSY!!! It all looks and sounds wonderful. Fun and a lot of work :-)

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