Ruby and her mate Jewell came to us via the Maitland Sale Yards. It was actually Jewell who reached out and touched our hearts there that day. Both girls had been sent by their breeder to the dogger.
Before opting to process them he decided to run them through the sale yards and see if he could get a sale. Jewell was so shutdown she hung her head on the gate of the yard and closed her eyes. We had stopped to talk to someone near the yard and as I leant on the gate she put her nose through and gently rested on my arm. When I moved closer and stroked her face she whinnied softly. As we turned to walk away amongst the many people there she called and watched us walk away. Ruby was in the yard next to her standing quietly with her head hanging. Neither girl sold on the day. Their fate was sealed.
That night, several phone calls between us established that no one had felt right leaving the girls there. We were all distressed about the mental state of Jewell and we decided we had to do something. A phone call the next morning to the dogger and we secured their purchase and hooked up the float to go and get them.
Our hearts broke as we walked through the paddock of 30 other horses all destined for nothing bright. Ruby and Jewell stood together, head to tail, protecting each other at the furtherest point of the paddock away from others. Knowing nothing about their past or their handling, we walked straight up, haltered both girls and lead them out of the paddock. They walked straight onto the float and travelled home to safety.
We have since established (from the breeder) that Ruby now 13 yo was started under saddle as a 2yo but has done little since. Her main purpose in life as a broodmare for riding pony foals. Jewell being only 8yo when she came in had had basic handling but was not started to saddle. We have recently had them both to our trainer for saddle work and are pleased to announce they came through with flying colours. They are not for beginner or in-experienced riders. However, they are very easy going and casual mounts for the weekend trail rider with a confident attitude. Both girls float and travel well and are great for the farrier 🙂