Monday, August 5, 2013

Welcome to my 100th Blog!

What I love about Wes....What could I talk about in this 100th blog but the equine love of my life? 

     Well, first of all, he is truly black, no fading and no special supplements to make him darker, he really does live up to the "midnite" in his name VP Midnitestranger+//.  He is also handsome in a very masculine way, a wonderful head with prominent jowls and beautiful eyes, and we all know I'm a sucker for a good looking horse!

     Wes has tons of personality and is definitely an individual.  He exhibits lots of pride and yes, that is a stallion trait, but it just comes so easily to him.  And, though he loves to play, he doesn't often show off because he is so comfortable in his "kingdom".
     He has always been an excellent ambassador for his breed.  He was asked to "be" the Black Stallion several years ago and we took him to Seattle Center to spend the day in (in!) the IMAX theater, doing demonstrations and letting children touch him between the movie premier showings. 

He amused himself by watching the Space Needle elevators go up and down and loved watching the rides go round and round in the amusement park!  Wes has also been volunteered several times in the Arabian Horse Association's T.A.I.L. program where he literall walked up into the stands (that's my Trail horse!) at a show to be petted by severely disabled people in wheelchairs and at a different event, he gave a group of blind children wonderful rides. He was a perfect gentleman, patient and quiet throughout it all and their smiles and laughs were so rewarding.  He loved the experience as much as his audience loved him. 
     Wes is the most affectionate stallion I have ever known.  He does like to play though, so one must be very aware at all times because he will grab your jacket or shirt and play tug if he can.  Mostly though, he is just busy and curious.  He is just a fun horse to be around.  And, as an added bonus, he loves horse shows and trailer rides.  He's also good on trails and loves to get out and explore.

     Wes has always been an athlete, having won many many classes in Trail, Western Pleasure and Western Riding.  He has been shown at Regionals and Nationals countless times and has an extensive record that I am very proud of.  Wes has been a very good Western Pleasure contender, a nationally ranked Trail horse and he absolutely loved Western Riding, along with his rider/owner, Joanne Salisbury, though we don't often get the opportunity to show that class in our area.
     Wes is a good loping horse with an excellent jog and is an easy lead changer.  He can lope a 10 foot circle and make it look easy and effortless.  This is a horse with lots of heart.  He recovered from what could have been a career ending injury for many horses and though it was a long road, he's tough and I respect him for how he kicked up a notch whenever he's been asked.  Part of it is that he loves his job. 
     So, Wes is 20 years young this year and looks about 12.  He has some grey hairs but that's the only revealing sign.  We're headed out soon to take him to yet another National show and he keeps on trying hard and we keep on helping him in every way possible.  His farrier and his vet are all strong players on "team Wes"!  He feels great and it's so great to see him playing in his paddock, shaking his neck and rearing - he loves to rear and snap his front feet hooves together with a bang, yikes!  But he loves it.

  At 20, he's still playful and at times challenging.  Make no mistake about it, he's not always easy, probably no stallion really is.  But, Wes is a wonderful horse and I have been privileged to train him for so many years.  Happy 20th birthday Wes!  And Happy 100th blog to my many readers.  Follow Wes at Canadian Nationals and I'll see you next week!  JD

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