Hope came to Mane Chance as we were asked to help the RSPCA who had horses in their care following the closure of another Sanctuary. He arrived with Casper and Jack, had spent much of his recent time with older horses and was struggling to find his place with them – they just didn’t have the time or patience for his young, boisterous horseplay. So once he was settled into the Mane Chance way, we decided to introduce him to our herd of horses closer to his age and mobility. It always takes a while to integrate a new horse and Hope was an interesting one as he has quite a strong personality and needed to learn a few manners from the other horses in order to find his place in the group. But we knew he would settle, and he has – our horses are great at organising their own herd dynamics and they jiggle around to accommodate a new member. Hope is quite a cheeky horse and is terribly clumsy, much to the slight irritation of the others who sometimes find his lack of personal space quite frustrating, so he has a little way to go still. He also has an unusual movement when he walks – his back undulates more than a normal horse. Our vet has looked at him and we believe it is due to poor muscle formation – when he was a young horse, he must have been grazed on too soft ground which means that he almost bounces along as he didn’t need to hold all his weight. He is on much firmer ground now and we hope this means he will strengthen as time goes on, but we will also have to keep an eye that it doesn’t give him any problem as he gets older – sometimes things that happened early in life have a habit of showing themselves years later, but we know to look out for him.
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