September 04, 2012

Boulder Colorado Haflingers

It's a Pony!
Steve and I went to see the cutest Haflinger pony mare, Heidi.  Without realizing beforehand, it was in the email but I think I missed it, she is 13.2 hands!!!  Oh my goodness she was cute!  She was very sweet and calm and was great to groom and hoof pick.  She had no issues being tacked up.

She's a therapy horse that was getting bored with her job of just being led around with kids.  It had been 2 years so the center head wanted to find her a home that would be more stimulating.  One of the volunteers rode her around in her three gaits.  She moved like a little pony.  I hopped on and did the walk trot and meandered through cones and even tried to leg yield but was told it had been a long time since she had done that.  She was still quite responsive.  Her trot was quick and choppy so it was a little difficult to ride but it was fun, I found myself giggling a little.

One cute thing is she nickers when you mount and dismount!  Steve thought it was the cutest thing!  The trot would take some getting use to and honestly I think she is a bit too small for me, long hours on the trail could wear her down faster than a horse a little bigger.  I didn't want to get off her though, she was a lot of fun!  She'd previously been trained to harness so I could see that Steve and I could get into that, it would be fun too!

I went for a mini trail ride with the facility lead and her palomino horse.  I did some more trotting, mainly to get the mare to keep up with the other horse.  She was lagging with her short little legs, I can relate!  Coming back the palomino started at a hose and made Heidi start but she just jerked to a stop and looked then realized it was nothing and moved on.

Though she was utterly adorable we had to move on to view a few more Haffies and I do want to think about her compatibility with me.  Later upon seeing the pictures above my mother said she was too small and short for me.  I tend to agree...what do you all think?

Not Quite Right

The next place we went to already had the mare Nell tacked up and waiting.   Hmmmm, that's a little red flag.  The lady said that Nell can be hard to catch and in the past would kick out during saddling.  So....I guess that's why I wasn't able to be here for that.  Nell had a nervous and worried look on her face.

I asked the owner to ride her first and she worked her around the ring, didn't look like the owner was really riding her, she was just a passenger.  I got on and did a short little walk around the ring but didn't feel right there was a sense that this mare was not really listening.  I got off in less than a minute much to the surprise of the owner.  I asked if I could lunge the mare so I grabbed my line from the car.  She listened alright at the lunge but still had that worried look on her face.  I just didn't feel comfortable around her or feel that she was very used to listening to her human.  I wasn't impressed and her hooves were overgrown even though the owner admitted it.  I wondered what other health care may have been overlooked.

Apparently the mare is mainly used to herd cattle and goes on autopilot mostly.  Okay, lots of work needed in my mind.  The other Haflingers were very pretty and nice.  One was under saddle but the lady didn't have a saddle that fit her, she said I could ride bareback.  I passed.  I just didn't feel right about the whole situation and Steve said he felt the same.  He said there was a look in the mares eye and the mannerisms of her didn't sit right with him either.  I listened to my gut and am glad I did, hearing that Steve had the same thoughts validated my own. 

If you don't feel right about a situation there is a reason and I know she wasn't the horse.  Compare this to above how I was pretty much tickled to ride Heidi, sometimes you just have to listen to your guts and what you sense from the horse.  A lot is in their eyes if you just pay attention and there was something off and nervous about this mare.  I don't feel bad being only at this lady's house for half an hour.  It just wasn't the horse and the others were not rideable or "testable".  What can you do?


ABScharstein said...

The Haffie may be small, but I think you two could develop a good working partnership. I like her the most so far :)

Mona Sterling said...

I agree that she is a little on the small side. However, that feeling is exactly what you're looking for! It's good to know what the *right* thing is because it makes it easier to sort through the horses that you are kind of 'meh' about.

I have also gotten off a horse after only a few minutes. I figure why waste anybody's time when you know it's not the right horse? I have had owners pester me to come try the horse again, which is kind of funny.

Go with your gut! And though the Haffie might be *too* small, maybe you'll find another one that is small but not tiny. I love my small horse!

Reddunappy said...

I love Halflingers!! I think they are so pretty/cute!! LOL

My experience with most of them is they are very easy to get along with and have great calm minds.

Here in the States we see a more cobby Halflinger, and actually the ideal breed type is supposed to be more Araby!

Camryn said...

As far as Haflingers go, you're not to large for her at all. Their grrrreat horses, not that I'm predjudice LOL.
In learning more about Haflingers you might want to join the HaflingerFriends Yahoo group. There is a discussion right now about new horses testing their owners that may interest you. Great group. And there is someone in Colorado that breeds them, name is Dawn and I understand her Hafy's are very nice. If you don't want to join the group I look back to find her email for you.

Christie said...

Yes I've talked with Dawn. She has a couple horses I'm interested in

I am noticing that a lot of haffies on Dreamhorse or other sites are more "drafty" looking so we'll see. Dawn's are more the type you are describing, very "sport horse". We'll just have to see who speaks to me.

I have a part arab I'm seeing today, several Fjords on saturday and tuesday and then a full arab on Sunday. I have time and patience to evaluate what I really want. If only I could add water to Heidi and make her grow a bit larger...LOL

Christie said...

Darn it! I had to cancel on the part arab viewing because it's crunch time at work and I had to work late! Uge!!!

I keep looking at the picture of Heidi and me...way too small. It's like those big kids trying to dirve a little mini motorcycle! In my mind I have to remember what I liked about her personality and the feeling of being secure with her, that's what I need to find in a horse more my size. I'd buy her just to play with if I could get two horses!!!

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