The New Guy

Chico, left, and Shiloh have become best buds.

Although my horse, Shiloh, and my milk cow, Sienna, are good buddies, I always knew that Shiloh would be happier with an equine friend. Sienna is great and all, but she’s still just a cow. After more than two years of being the only horse on our farm, Shiloh got a companion.

A couple of weeks ago, we brought Chico home. Chico is a 10-year-old paint gelding. I had always wanted a second horse, so my husband and I could ride together. And, of course, so the kids or a friend could ride with me. I had been horse hunting for a while before locating Chico. We were quite happy to bring him home.

Shiloh and Chico hit it off wonderfully. As far as I can tell, they’ve had no issues between them. Chico, being taller and stockier than Shiloh, has become the dominant horse of their two-horse herd. Although he may be the boss of Shiloh, he still needs to build his confidence around cattle.

When I first brought Chico home and put him in the back pasture where I had Shiloh and Sienna, Sienna came barrelling toward Chico in a hurry. She wanted to check out this new addition to the farm. Chico freaked out. My little Jersey milk cow frightened the pieces out of this big horse. He took off running around the pasture. Sienna kept trying to get close to him. I’m sure she was just trying to say hello. But, Chico wasn’t having it. Every time she would come close, he would bolt. I’m happy to say that, later the same day, they made nice.

Chico allows Sienna to lick him from across the fence. He’s definitely made progress with her.

When we take him out riding, Chico still gets nervous when curious cows come up to him. He needs to get over that and take a lesson from Shiloh. The cows don’t bother Shiloh one bit. I’m pretty sure that during the two years he was alone on our place, he thought he was just one of the cows.We ride the horses around our pasture and neighboring fields. Later this month, we plan to take them on a trail ride with an area horse club. Hopefully, that will go well. As I said last week, horses are a lot more finicky that milk cows. You just never know!

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