Acquired: Barn / trainer
Posted Jul 02, 2015
I did now own Honey myself, my sister-in-law did. As such, she was my horse-niece, the first horse I ever rode, and the one that taught me to ride. She also competed in barrel racing and other rodeo events.
Honey was a stunning mare, 18 hands high with a sweet and loving temperament. From a young age, she was trusted with having 2-3 year olds sitting on her back, and she rarely met a stranger. Her gait was smooth and easy, a joy for new riders. She had the sense that a new rider was on her back and would respond appropriately to their nerves and was more sensitive to their commands.
As I mentioned, I learned to ride on Honey, and always felt safe and cared for, even when I knew little about how to show her what I wanted to do. She was instinctively driven and very easy to train and direct. She took to reining easily, as well as Western Pleasure. She was a pro barrel racer, taking care to cut close around the barrels while still taking care of her rider.
One of the things that is most notable about Honey, and in turn, about the breed, is the way that they love to work. She was always a willing worker and looked forward to being ridden each day. As such, she struggled when schedules were busy and daily rides were postponed. She was innately social, and greatly enjoyed the presence of other horses...once she realized that she would be receiving equal attention.
Health-wise, she struggled with a condition that made her knee joints sore, similar to arthritis. In the end, this is what led to her being put down, as there was nothing else that could be done to relieve her pain. Other than this, she had no health issues and did fine eating hay in the winter and corn in the summer. She deeply loved watermelon rinds and was rather affectionate after enjoying one.