Story submitted by Pasture Pals Equine Rescue, Inc
When my husband Ron and I first began volunteering at Pasture Pals Equine Rescue we had no intention of becoming horse “parents”. In fact, we wanted to have a few goats at the little farmhouse we planned to build. Pasture Pals Equine Rescue had some goats and we were eager to learn more about goat care, along with helping horses. During our Friday volunteering hours, I rekindled my early passion for horses and Ron discovered he loved them too. The goats, on the other hand, proved to be less fun than either of us anticipated.
When we started at Pasture Pals Equine Rescue, one of the minis had recently had a baby, who was, of course, utterly adorable. The mini mamma was watchful and very focused on her baby’s needs. Although she was protective, she was never aggressive. Her baby was outgoing and playful. As time went on, we noticed how the mamma avoided confrontation and drama with the other horses. Whenever the mamma approached another horse she did so in a quietly curious and friendly way. She was equally polite and gentle with humans, although she wasn’t keen on being caught and haltered. Did I mention how absolutely beautiful this mini mamma is? More than one person has referred to her as a “Barbie pony”.
Weeks passed and we began casually tossing out the idea of adding a mini to our handful of goats (yes, we were still considering goats–tiny, gentle goats). Although Ron and I discussed all the minis, I already knew which one I wanted. Mini mamma wasn’t as eager for human attention as some of the others, but I was confident that eventually Ron would see the light once he spent more time with her. He soon reported that she was the only mini who let him touch her nose right after sniffing his hand. At that point the deal was sealed, at least as far as we were concerned.
The next steps were to get Pasture Pals Equine Rescue approval, and of course, to finish building our farmhouse and barn. We were months away from construction completion and during that period anyone else could apply to adopt her once her baby was weaned. That was a terrifying thought! We decided to sponsor her while waiting for approval, which gave us special consideration.
Several months later, I’m thrilled to report we were approved to adopt the mini mare we named Jolene, and although our house and barn aren’t ready yet, they will be soon. During our wait time we’ve spent a lot of time with Jolene, and she has met both our daughters. Jolene is much more amenable to being haltered now. We found her special scratching spot that makes her upper lip quiver. She recognizes us and her new name. She is still the gentlest, sweetest mare we’ve ever met, but we’ve also seen her playful side. Soon we’ll be able to look out our windows and see her, and a horse friend grazing in our pasture (we’d never want Jolene to be an “only”). We can’t wait! Oh, and there will be no goats…