So, the universe finally thawed enough for my horse to arrive at his new home this past Thursday evening. It was close to dark when the trailer finally pulled in. All the other horses were in for the night, the resident geese were hissing and being the overall horribly nasty creatures that they are, basically blocking our path to the barn. He pretty much ignored their outbursts (thankfully) and we got him snug in his stall with a basket full of hay and all was well.
He spent the next couple of days away from the herd, the first one in his stall just getting used to the place. I took him out and we walked around the farm. He seemed really interested in the pigs. LOL. The next day he was both in his stall and out in a little paddock where he could see everyone but wasn't with him. Today was his "big day" and he got to go out with the other geldings.
Everyone else went out first and then we brought him on a lead into the field. Most of them had already made their way to the hay bales so he was able to walk in without much fuss. He trotted off to the right, stopping to graze just beyond the little rocky outpost that separates the bottom of the field from the hill. A bay gelding caught sight of him and went trotting over (gulp). You just never know how horses are going to react to each other...
The bay sniffed him and my horse tried to play it cool. He didn't turn tail and run or threaten he just sort of meandered further up the hill. The bay followed and they started to graze together.
After grazing together for a few minutes, some other horses started to make their way over. Some more quickly than others and (gulp again) I braced myself for the inevitable you are new here so know your place nip, kick, pushiness....
But the bay was not about to let his new friend get that kind of welcome! LOL. He laid back ears, chased each of them away and kept putting himself between the mini herd and my horse. It was something to watch.
He stayed with Koda (more on the name in a bit) all day, basically shadowing him and keeping him safe. Several people saw this, including one of my new barn mates who had stopped to visit family this afternoon and can see the field from their house.
I found out a bit of back story later. Apparently this bay (his name is Justice) was best friends with an old grey gelding who died last year. Maybe something in Koda's coloring reminded him of his friend? Whatever the reason, Justice got some carrots from me today too!
In Loving Memory
...of the first horse to hold my heart