So currently we have:
E.J. (E'Argo Junior) - Yackatoon Fleck - Stock horse X Quarter horse - Gelding
Brooke - Miss Lawsum - Thoroughbred - Mare
Wilbur - Not Dane Prince - Thoroughbred - Gelding
E'Argo - Stock Horse - Gelding
Meggie - Nut Meg - Quarter Horse - Mare
Luu Luu - Roo - Thoroughbred - Mare
Woody - Pedermales - Thoroughbred - Gelding
Olly - Yackatoon Olly - Stock Horse X Quarter Horse - Gelding
Hollica (I call her snorts) - Stock Horse X Thoroughbred - Mare
Gillette - Stock Horse - Gelding
Ringo - Stock Horse - Gelding
Garry - Thoroughbred - Gelding
Piper - Teeam Piper - Stock Horse X Quarter Horse - Mare
Rebel - Bellair Sir Rebel - Stock Horse X Thoroughbred - Stallion
Other Horses that are frequently being ridden by us are:
Porsha - Stock Horse X Thoroughbred - Mare
MacIntire - Quarter Horse X Stock Horse X Thoroughbred - Gelding
Grace - Warmblood - Mare
Lester - Quarter Horse X Thoroughbred - Gelding
Mackuna - Stock Horse X Thoroughbred - Mare
Baccara - Stock Horse X Thoroughbred – Mare
I might talk about some of the other horses throughout this Journal so the list is so that you know who/what I’m talking about. My horses are E.J., E’Argo, Hollica and sometimes Olly or Porsha.
Part 1 - E'Argo
E’Argo is the first horse that I have owned myself. He’s black and has no white markings on him at all. He’s about 19 (same age as me) and I’ve had him since I was about 11 or 12. When E’Argo first came to me he was this 15 hand ugly fluff ball with really bad feet and had some major trust and mental issues. E’Argo belonged to my uncle who had him cut and broke in at the age of 4-5. The man who broke him in didn’t care that he was a very sensitive horse that needed more ground work than a non-nervous or sensitive horse, he broke him in and the way he got the bridle on him was to punch him in the nose and stun him. The horse I was borrowing at the time was to be sold and I need to look for a horse of my own. Mum suggested I call my uncle and ask for one of his horses, so I did. E’Argo was the horse that I had claimed as mine, for when I was at my Grandparents property where my uncle also lives. I called and asked if I could borrow either him of Mackuna (who we later ended up with anyway) and was told that I couldn’t have Mackuna but I could have E’Argo, so he packed him onto the float and brought him down. As I mentioned earlier he was not a very attractive horse when he arrived, no one rode him or had time to give him any TLC for a very long time. Woolly mammoth was to become his first nickname, as he had about 3 – 4 inches of hair all over and looked like a shaggy dog or a woolly mammoth. We brought him a hessian rug and daily grooming was a must. His feet were the first thing that we took care of though, as they were well and truly overgrown and splitting as it was so dry from the drought. We had a farrier come and put shoes on him that week and brought some oils to brush on his feet.
That weekend, I hadn’t even had him a full week yet, we took him to my first gymkhana. To say he was out of his comfort zone was a huge yes, even though he’d been off the farm to go to polocrosse due to his nervous nature has was trying to be calm but some things just scared the pants off him. Though saying that he was a trooper and I came home that weekend with the winning trophy and had made it into the top 10 for barrel racing. I must admit that it was only a small turn out but…. It was the start of a friendship that I will cherish until my dying days. Yes we’ve had our ups and downs and plenty of spills and thrills but I know that my baby is there for me no matter what.
Throughout the years we have managed to over come many obstacles, he’s taught me how to get a horses trust and love and how to ride. The major obstacle that we have overcome is his head shyness, he lets me bridle him with no dramas and lets me play with his ears and poll like he was never head shy. He does sometimes have a mental glitch and freaks out… but if you’ve ever had a horse that has been abused at any stage of their life you’d understand that sometimes that just happens. The thing that amazes me the most about him is that when I first got him he was not a kids horse, but now kids can ride him and my boyfriend who has never ridden before learnt to ride on him. For me he is a hypo crazy buddle of fun but for my boyfriend and cousins he’s like a sweet little baby lamb who trundles along at a slow pace. He’s the sort of horse that I can jump on with no riding tools (bridle, halter, etc.) and just go for a ride.
I look back on it now and wonder how in the world we ever got to where we are now. The thing that I love most about him is he has such a big heart and he’s always looking out for who ever is riding him. If he was to ever go down, which was really rare as for a 15 hand horse he had huge feet, he would do this funny sort of body buck as I call it and it would throw you out of the way of his body, sounds weird doesn’t it? One time that stands out to me the most is when my friend, Ash, who has cerebral Palsy (she does ride a lot and has her own horses) came out for the weekend and helped us muster. Even though I knew she could ride I decided to put her on “the old man” or “gramps” as he’s now been dubbed.
I was so glad that I did, as while out mustering both my friend and the old man where content on the cattle and didn’t see the wild pigs wallow that they were about to walk into. My friend said as E’Argo went down he did his body buck and her legs locked on from her cerebral palsy, he tried twice to dislodge her and then realised that he couldn’t get rid of her. She said once he realised that he couldn’t get her off that he made sure that he landed in a way that he never pinned her legs. She said how he landed would have had to have hurt him to do as it was such an awkward position. He waited until she crawled off him before he tried to get up. It was at this point I was able to reach them and saw him scramble up out of the wallow and turned around to find where she had gone. He stood there and waited for her to come and get him and he look so distort with himself for putting her in that sort of danger. Ash gave him a pat walked him out of the long grass and climbed back on. Needless to say the whole way home he watched every step he took and was so cautious it was a little bit funny to watch, but we knew why he was doing it. Both horse and rider were fine and when we got home he got a handful of pellets for his behaviour. Ash always believed me about the “body buck” to get you out of the way but once she experienced it for herself…. Well let’s just say he now holds a special place in her heart to.
I’ve been very fortunate to still have him as a few years ago on a ride home from a friends place he was bitten by a snake. There were four of us riding home to my place, my brother, sister, my friend Stacey and I. Snakes are a common site in Australia and I’d seen heaps in the past month, so I’d been on the look out until we were about half way home, when I looked up to say something to everyone. E’Argo started to dance around and started to throw his head down, when I looked down here was this great big brown snake wrapped around his legs. Of course I freaked and kicked him forward, the snake was flung backwards and took off in the opposite direction. I jumped straight off him and started to sooth him to try to get his heart rate down, Stacey took off for her place and my brother took off for home. My sister and I waited together for mum and the vet to arrive, for the whole time we waited my sister kept asking me what would happen if he died, do you really think he got bitten, what happens to horses that are bitten and heaps of other questions that had me in tears as I thought I’d loose my best friend.
The vet arrived and checked him over and advised us that yes he was bitten but he was the luckiest horse ever. He called it a dry strike to the cannon bone, which meant that the snake had just eaten and used up most of its venom and that because of where it had bitten it couldn’t sink its fangs in. He advised us that there was still a chance that he may die but it was very slim. I rode him the rest of the way home. We had organised to go to our grandparents that day previously and mum asked me what I wanted to do, I told her that I couldn’t be at home if he did die as I thought I wouldn’t be able to stand the sight of him if he was to die. I called the next morning from my grandparents place to hear that all was well and he was doing fine.
For me E’Argo has been my teacher and my best friend who has been there for me when ever I need him. He use to get jealous when I rode other horses, but now he’s retired he couldn’t careless and can’t wait to get out of the yards. I’m hoping that nothing happens to him, a. Because he is my baby and I love him and b. Because I want my children to learn how to ride on him. He is and always will be in my heart.