- Pets and Animals
Interesting Pets: Pixie a Horse
How we got Pixie
Pixie came to us because my husband wanted our kids to have a horse so they could learn how to take care of a horse, learn to ride and learn responsibility of a large animal. We had quarter horses while we lived in the states but our kids were too little to remember them. We were assured that she was a very gentle horse and perfect for kids. They never hinted that this horse did not like to be ridden or her unusual quirks, I guess they just wanted to get ride of her.
She was an unusual horse, a small roan colored quarter horse. She was gentle, but did not like to be ridden. An adult who knew how to ride, would at first have difficulty, but if you capable you would be fine. If you didn’t know how to ride she would pull every trick there is and a few of her own inventions to get you off. When the kids rode her, she had all kinds of tricks. She would not go where the kids wanted her to go, she went where she wanted to go, which was where she could get them off her back.
Northern British Columbia
We lived in northern British Columbia where there are lots of evergreen trees, and she found out that if she would go in the trees she could brush off the kids with the low tree limbs. If this did not work, she would just lie down with the kids on her, making them think there was something wrong with her and she was dying. Pixie was a very good actor. Many times the kids would come running into the house crying “there is something wrong with Pixie, she just laid down and can’t get up!”
She would go as close to a tree as possible and try and rub them off or she would gallop straight toward a tree and then turn sharply, this often propelled the rider to fly off straight into the tree while she went left! This worked very well; we had several concussions when heads hit trees.
When you first got on she would crow hop to get the person off, she really didn’t buck, but the persistent crow-hopping Pixie did instead of walking usually worked. The energy she exhibited getting the kids off, was a lot more than she would have had to use letting them ride. But, for some reason she did not like being ridden – by anyone!
If these didn’t work, she would lie down and roll, even with the saddle on, this always got them off. When she would get up, the saddle would be turned side ways so the kids couldn’t get back on. She was a clever and inventive horse.
One of the other methods she used, the kids could not rein her, they could have her head pulled around completely to the left and she would just keep going to the right! She pretty well did what she wanted.
If the kids were persistent enough to keep getting back on her, she would resort to trying to bite them as they mounted.
A Bored Horse
Bored in the corral or barn! She entertained herself by chomping off all the wood that she could reach; in fact she pretty well demolished her stall and the corral rails! We would go out there and see all the wood left on the ground that she had chewed off overnight!
We staked Pixie out to eat the grass along the power line or in our yard. We didn’t mow our grass, or what grass we had, we just let Pixie eat it.
But she being the inventive horse she was, did not graze as other horses did, she would lie down and eat whatever was in her reach. When this was all gone, she would get up and move to another spot and proceed to lie down. When we fed her hay, she would always lie down to eat it. I never saw Pixie eat her hay standing up.
One day one of our sons came in the house yelling “ouch, ouch, ouch” and running from room to room and he keep this up, I was going behind him asking, “What happened?” He wouldn’t stop yelling, ‘ouch, ouch, ouch” until I cornered him in the bathroom. He said that he was out with Pixie, getting her ready to ride when she stepped on his foot. He was barefoot and he couldn’t get her to get off his foot. When he pushed her, she just leaned into him harder. When she finally consented to move off his foot, that’s when he started running around yelling “ouch, ouch, ouch.”
She didn’t just eat grass, hay and oats as most horses eat, she liked variety. One day we were planning on a get together with friends and I had made two platters of sandwiches, one of salmon salad and one of egg salad.
I split the two platters with half salmon and half egg salad and had everything laid out on the kitchen table, which was right in front of our big kitchen window. I had left the kitchen window open, because it was a beautiful bright sunny day and I loved having the windows open, even though we had mosquitoes, black flies and no see-em’s.
Pixie was staked outside on the front lawn to eat grass at her leisure. I had everything ready for our get together and decided it was a good time to take a shower and when I came into the kitchen there was Pixie with her head inside the window. I could see she had already eaten all of one platter and she was pulling the tablecloth to her so she could get to the other sandwich platter!
We had wiener roasts outside in the evening over a campfire in our yard, which we often did during the long summer evenings along with roasting marshmallows. We often shared our punch, coffee, hotdogs, marshmallows and dessert with Pixie. She loved eating everything she could and didn’t turn her lips up at anything! She loved slurping our coffee. Pixie loved chocolate cake; she would almost smack her lips when she ate this. She would like the plate clean to get the last little chocolate tidbit off the plate.
If you wanted to see a horse drool, all you had to do was show Pixie an apple. She would literally drool way before you ever gave her a bite of the apple. It was such a funny sight, watching a horse drool, that this was great entertainment for our evening picnic.
All The Rest
While we had her staked out alongside our house one day, a little 4-year-old neighbor girl, Tanine came over to visit. She saw the horse and being inquisitive was not afraid to explore different things. I was in the house and heard someone talking and went outside to see who was talking and found Tanine under the horse, exploring and poking Pixie in the stomach. Pixie just stood there and let Tanine poke and jab her and asking what is this and that! As long as you did not try to ride Pixie she was a most gentle horse you could ever want. But the minute she thought you were going to ride her, she had all kinds of ways to prevent this.
When the kids finally decided she wasn’t worth the effort to try and ride her because of her strict desire not to be ridden by anyone we sold Pixie to an outfitter. He later told us that Pixie was the best back packer horse he had ever had and loved her.
Pixie was the most unusual horse we ever owned, and one that we will not forget because of her antics of not wanting to be ridden. Her unusual taste in food, how she liked to eat lying down and how gentle she was as long as you did not try to ride her.
Unfortunately, we never took a picture of Pixie. We were so busy raising kids, owning an operating an outpost in northern British Columbia and not thinking about taking pictures of our animals. It’s one of those things, we wish that we did – but didn’t do. All we have of Pixie is our memories, and what memories we have we will never forget.