Meet the animals: Dante
[Originally posted March 19, 2014 at caitlinpatton.com/blog]
We rescued Dante from the Camelot auction in New Jersey last August. We knew we would soon be moving to our new home and wanted a companion for Casidy – I was thinking of fostering a horse for a rescue, but then saw this cutie on Facebook and fell in love. Look how cute he is – who could resist?!
I saw his photos on a Thursday and thought he was adorable, but had no serious thought of actually buying him. On the Friday, I was having out having cocktails with family, both resident and visiting, and showed the photos of #723 to my Mom, just because he was cute. Of course the photos ended up being passed around the table and my dear hubby said, “If you really want him, we can go look at him tomorrow.”
So I called and arranged to visit Camelot the next day!
We left very early and arrived at Camelot before 9am, even before their staff arrived. We didn’t want to drive all that way only to find that he had been purchased by phone before we arrived, so we wanted to get there early. I had planned to take my horse trailer and bring him straight home if he was as nice as he looked in his photos, but when we hooked it up, the truck’s brake pedal went straight down to the floor. Brake line problem. We drove up in our Honda Civic Hybrid instead.
The horses at Camelot had plenty of water and good-quality hay, and seemed to be well cared for during their time at the auction house. There were a number of chickens free ranging, and we enjoyed meeting the horses. I spent some time getting to know #723, watching him move at liberty, and checking his legs and conformation. He looked great, so we paid for him and arranged for someone to transport him to Maryland later that day.
Due to traffic, he didn’t arrive until late that night. He was tired, still wearing his number on both hips, and clearly relieved to be in his snug stall. He seemed grateful to be there, and seemed somehow to know that he was home with us.
Since then, Dante has thrived with us. He and Casidy have bonded, and although my time to work with him has been limited, I have ridden him a few times. At first, he was nervous every time I took him out of his pasture – I think he was afraid of being moved again – but he has settled in and seems to be enjoying his life with us. I look forward to riding him more as the weather warms up. I also want to teach him to drive, with the goal of using him to pull logs out of our woods, and possibly to do other work around the farm.
Stay tuned this spring and summer for Dante’s progress!