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I'm a children's author. Animals are a constant source of writing material for me. They are also my heart!


>> Thursday, April 23, 2009

I decided I should introduce you to my pets before I start posting old columns from equine magazines. Tango seems like the perfect place to start since I already have photos of him on my other blog

Some horse owners don't consider their horses as pets, but I sure do. I adore Tango. I have to remind myself that he's not a dog on a routine basis. Let me tell you about Tango's beginning. Five summers ago I rescued Tango. I got a phone call while I was on a family vacation in the mountains of Tennessee. "There's a horse who's going to slaughter tomorrow if you don't commit to buy him now," the caller said. Being the sucker that I am I asked for the rest of the story. It seems that an Amish man purchased Tango's bay mother when she was pregnant. She was expected to deliver a bay foal but instead Tango came out about as black and white as they come. This Amish man could not drive a "flashy" horse, so after keeping him for his kids to play with for a couple years, he was ready to sell him one way or another. I bought Tango by the pound and brought him back to the farm where I was boarding an elderly thoroughbred. The plan was for someone (not me) to train Tango.

Unfortunately that didn't happen, so being overly confident and eternally optimistic I managed to test fate. One beautiful summer evening in August my friend and I went out for a trail ride. "Tango's calm," I said, "He'll be fine." I guess the sweet smell of summer and a new horse took the place of common sense. Tango hadn't been under saddle much yet and before the evening was over I managed to end up on the ground. When I fall it looks like Barney the Dinosaur in a train wreck and this time was no exception. There was no gracefulness in the way that I ruptured my spleen.

That was then and this is now. Tango is amazing. He moves like a dream. I can show him in pleasure driving classes and dressage.Tango is also Houdini. Want to know why? One winter when Tango was slightly off (lame) I couldn't ride him much. So instead, I taught Tango tricks. I taught him to push a ball. I taught him to pick up cones. I taught him to bow and give kisses. AND I TAUGHT HIM TO USE HIS MOUTH TO PULL THE END OF A ROPE.So, Tango pushes. He pulls. He gets out. Dumb me. Smart Tango. He knows where the grass is greener!


Sandy April 23, 2009 at 10:52 AM  

Got it fixed. Hugs
Be back later

Tatersmama April 23, 2009 at 3:44 PM  

What a great story! My grandpa used to have a Pinto that he would never drive because it was too flashy as well.. but how we loved that horse!

Glue Girl April 23, 2009 at 8:36 PM  

Jan, animals are our therapy. Where else can we get instant adoration and warm snuggles any time we want them? Even when we're feeling out of sorts, our animals give their love freely. Humans made a huge leap forward on the evolutionary trail when we decided to domesticate animals. Think of all the research that shows how much healthier people stay when they have pets. I can't imagine something as smart as your horse being sold for slaughter. That makes me think of how intelligent all the larger mammals are. Think of elephants and whales. I wish we could study animals thought patterns and reasoning powers. I am sure we would be even more amazed (and humane in our treatment and attitudes toward them) if we could understand their ways of thinking. I can't wait to read more. . .

Sandy April 24, 2009 at 8:23 PM  

Tango's gotten out more than just the one time Jan wrote about. As recently as a few weeks ago...something about needed a chain on the gate comes to mind. lol


Anonymous May 1, 2009 at 3:13 PM  

Tango sounds like my dog Sadie. I call her the Houdini dog because she is smart enough to get out of ANY kennel we put her in. We had to learn to secure the latches otherwise, houdini dog escapes and tears the house to shreds!

~Meek (Polly & Meek)

Anonymous May 4, 2009 at 10:28 PM  

And Maggie & I will forever thank Tango for getting us together with you, then Antonella, then Casey, etc. etc. etc. We thank God & Aunt Donna, too!

Tweedles -- that's me June 26, 2009 at 12:19 AM  

Tee hee hee
Yipee, I found the story!
I love this story so much.
I want to play ball with Tango!
I want to play tug of war with him!
Oh to kiss him!
nitety nite

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