Part of preparing a pony to go to a new home is taking them to a vet for their travel papers. We live far enough out that vets don’t like to come to us, so we take the pony to them for their health certificate and Coggins. Even though I’ve done this trip dozens of times, every time is a novel experience because each pony reacts to the trip differently.
Willowtrail Storm Princess, my nine month old filly, hadn’t been in a trailer for three months and never without her mother. She’s long since weaned, so I chose my oldest mare Beauty, a seasoned traveler and preferred companion of Princess’s, to make the journey with Princess. It was a good choice. Princess loaded into the trailer after Beauty with only gentle reminders, and we were on our way.
We stopped about four miles from home so I could check on the girls, and Princess was bright eyed, curious, and happy to see me. When we arrived at the vet clinic, the vet wasn’t ready for us, so I unloaded Princess and walked her around a bit. We live in North Park, which is ringed by mountains. Where we live is tucked into a corner of the park in the trees, in contrast to the vet clinic which is the middle of the park in sagebrush on a busy highway.
Princess’s first object of attention was a loaded log truck moving at high speed. She then spied some horses. And they spied her. After looking at each other, she whinnied, and they whinnied in return. Beauty whinnied from the trailer as well. The vet’s herd then scampered out and around their pasture to get a better look at Princess. Princess thought perhaps she should join them in their scampering, but she accepted my reminder that she was with me. I decided to load Princess back in the trailer with Beauty for the rest of our wait, and I was pleased when Princess jumped right in.
When the vet was ready for us, she unloaded and loaded again easily despite the strange surroundings. At each stop on our way home – for fuel, at the lumber yard, getting propane, then at a client’s – she watched the goings-on with great interest. I admit to expecting Princess to be on edge on our trip to town because she’s young and it was full of new experiences. Instead she seemed to find it all fascinating. I look forward to keeping in touch with her owner and hearing how she reacts to the other new things that are headed her way in her new life.
© Jenifer Morrissey, 2015
If you enjoy stories like this one, you might also be interested in the books A Humbling Experience and What an Honor, available internationally by clicking here.