The Pink Panther

Photo credit for above photo Jaclyn Bogart

This is Kharra, (pronounced Car-Uhh) an Arabian/Welsh pony cross. We bought her about 4-5 yrs ago as a 2 1/2yr old, the original plan was to train her to be a kids pony then sell her to some lucky little girl. Well Kharra had other ideas and that lucky little girl turned out to be me. She had way too much energy for the average rider, she was scared of anything that moved or made noise and farrier and vet visits were a nightmare. I’d ridden some bad ponies before but this wasen’t about dominating her or showing her who’s boss, she diddn’t CARE who was boss. She destroyed and escaped her stall and paddocks on numerous occasions and good luck catching her when she got loose. After many tears of frustration and trying to find a trainer small enough to fit on her, I decided I would have to do all the riding part myself. Me and my mom decided to do some ‘trust building’ exercises, as strange as it sounded back then. We would take her for walks up and down the road and through trails just like a dog, with no one on her back. I did some join-up exercises with her (think of the horse whisperer) where you make them run around and allow them to follow you after, it’s scary how much that worked. We took our time with her and trained her bareback without a saddle first, then slowly introduced things one by one. Once she was being ridden regularly we discovered that her problem is she needs a steady job to keep her calm, she is a lot like a border collie stuck in the house all day. After patience and lots of regular exercise both mental and physical she finally began to relax and be  normal well mannered pony. 2 years after she began training I took her to her first show and got my very first red ribbon, with many more to follow. Today she never bucks, rears, bites, kicks, or does anything mean or nasty, sometimes she goes a little fast but slows down the moment I ask her to, she will go over anything and everything I point her at, and she was ridden by a very small 5yr old girl last summer and she was an angel. She keeps me on my feet though, if I don’t ask her properly she won’t do it, and im not allowed to smack her or yell at her or she has a hissy fit. She stops dead in her tracks when I ask her to stop by raising my hand, with no lead rope attached, and sometimes when I don’t feel like doing anything else I jump on her bareback with no bridle, saddle or rope around her neck and we wander around her paddock, she trots, canters, and turns when I ask her to, but she never goes too fast. People think it’s weird that im an adult now and own 3 other full sized horses and yet I still have her, I don’t think I could ever sell her, she is just too much of an inspiration to me, she showed me that I could do things I never imagined were possible. So for now, I’ll just sit back and watch as the lucky little girls who have the privelidge of riding her learn how to ride and go on and win their first red ribbon too. Oh yea, and her registered name is Laurentian’s Little Dreamer, I couldn’t think of anything  more perfect.

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About lyndagraveline

Ottawa based professional pet photographer, I photograph everything from horses, dogs & cats to wild & exotic animals. Available for commercial shoots as well, see website for more details. www.LGravelinePhotography.com
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