There is only supposed to be one chestnut horse in the pasture. Freedom. So when two chestnut heads greeted me, my first thought was to rub my eyes.
But no, it was just Dandy coming to visit. Dandy lives in the pasture next to Freedom and since Dandy’s best friend, Merlin, died over the summer Dandy’s been lonely. So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised he’d figured out how to come for a visit.
The two boys looked pretty bonded when I found them. No one was hurt; they were just hanging out together. Except for breakfast. Freedom did not want to share his breakfast. For several years he lived with a mare named Willow, but they had a system for dealing with food. He ate, she watched. When he was feeling beneficent, he would sometimes let her eat from his pan.
However, after I separated them and they’d eaten, there was a lot of running and calling. It was the first time I’d every seen Dandy canter — he’s about 29 and kind of stiff. It’s amazing how quickly horses can create a new herd and it reminds me how social they are.
Freedom enjoys being the herd leader. He’s not a mean horse and he’s not particularly bossy (except when it comes to meals) but he likes to keep track of his friends and now Dandy is his responsibility.
Interestingly, the girls showed no interest in the new resident. Curly and Zelda are happy by themselves. I guess they find the boys annoying.