“Little Blue” is what I ended up calling him because I just couldn’t find a name that fit him very well was my first.
My very first Nokota I took from first touch to sitting in the saddle, becuase of that reason alone he would have been special. He was far more then that to me.
He was one of the smallest horses in the group and one of the bravest, He made first contact in the open feild with my hand! That was exciting. Being my first time around an untrained and wild horse I didn’t know what to expect so I was cautious…in response he was cautious but he just sniffed me and stood a few feet away calmly.
When we first got into the pen and Jack roped him for me….(I suck at roping in case you hadn’t gotten that from other posts) It did not take long to make contact. Going round and round in circles in the round pen seem to bore him as much as it made me sweat. I somehow….and even now I don’t know how considering I didn’t know what I was doing at all being my first clinic….he decided I was more interesting.
Soon after, I was touching him..they shiver at first like a fly just landed there but they are watching you the whole time…once he saw I wasn’t going to hurt him and it kind of felt nice, I could see the change in his expression, it was slight and Jack had to point it out but once he did…then he started yawning…coming down off the adrenaline. I was able to put the halter on easily and honestly still to this day he was the easiest colt I’ve ever leaded. He learned quicker then I could teach him.
We played accept the human which he seemed to think was very interesting. He was calm and willing to let me touch everywhere, jump everywhere around him, put my weight against him…We had one little issue that took me longer to realize what was going on. He had a big bite mark sore on his back that I wasn’t sure if my jeans or weight would bother him so after a few attempts and him swiftly walking backwards until his head was under my legs and the fence instead of his back I figured out that it was painful for him. BUT he didn’t bolt, react angerly or anything you would expect a wild animal would do in reaction to pain. He KNEW somehow I was just too dull to recognize that that hurt and we could still be friends.
The second day was more accept the human and getting used to odd things like balls, tarps, mounting blocks..ropes flying around and saddles.
My first saddling attempts were pathetic. Jack let me use his saddle. I didn’t bring mine becuase it’s 45 lbs…Jacks wasn’t much lighter. Even though I had practiced with my horse trainers saddle earlier on in the day, much to her annoyance I’m sure I blundered it when I tried it on a horse. So Jack had to do this for me too.
He got the saddle on, was cinched up and we let him loose to walk around the arena freely. Not one buck or even a kick…he didn’t even look concerned. He just walked around sniffing stuff and checking people out.
The third day, I didn’t even have to try to rope him, I was able to walk right up to him, using my body to block forward movement and put the halter on…it took mere minutes to do.
I wore tennis shoes because I hadn’t anticipated riding since he had the big sore on his back. Well the saddle fit comfortably over the sore and I was regretting wearing tennis shoes because it’s more unsafe especially with wild colts so I wasn’t able to ride. I was however allowed to get up and down on either side of him and sit in the saddle. He handled all this like a champ…this little 2 year old horse never been touched by humans prior to two days ago, letting this 160 lbl predator on his back and not complaining or moving even though I was certain he would be screaming you’re too heavy, get off me! He wasn’t! He just stood quietly and squarely to accept me getting on and off him on both sides repetedly.
I was crying after letting him go in the feild, knowing it was done, the clinic was over and I probably wouldn’t see him ever again. It was heartbreaking. If I had the funds to make sure I could care for two horses thru thick and thin I would have bought him right then and there. Thinking clearly though, being a contractor I couldn’t bear the thought of if something happened to my job it would be a huge burden on my husband to pay for two horses he has nothing to do with and if anything ever happened to his job I would be forced to sell..I can’t do that….I beleive in lifetime ownership and I don’t mean just me, I mean for the life of the horse. I plan on keeping horses until thier days are at an end, thru retirement and old age. So it was just too many IF’s for me to take the risk.
In the end, I missed my chance. Little Blue was adopted to a very loving family which suprisingly enough I met at the North Dakota clinic. His new name is “Boone” and they have nothing but good to say about him. I’m VERY glad he’s with good people who care about horses and are knowledgeable about Nokota’s. They are kind, sincere, genuine people that love horses so he’s very lucky! But in the end It’s still bittersweet, Although I am super happy for them and him, I am not too proud to say I am quite jealous! I miss him, I love that horse & will always remember him and kick myself for not taking the chance even though it probably was the best decision for us both. I am also thankful that the family is happy to talk to me about him. Shelly recently sent me a picture of him…so here he is today courtosy of his new mom Shelly: Nokota coats, especially the roans do change color so he’s a lot different looking then he was at the clinic but it is him.