|A simple joy of horse ownership.|
Have you ever watched your horse graze? I am sure that you have. It is a very enjoyable, peaceful activity. Nothing makes Harley quite as happy as food and eating, so watching him eat is watching him in complete and contagious happiness.
Just spend a little time watching a horse graze and you will see just how discerning the palate can be. Certain grasses and "weeds" are gobbled up, while others are passed by untouched. Sometimes I think that I have found a patch of delicious grass only to find that Harley brushes the green blades with a closed muzzle and walks to a patch that seems less enticing to my human eyes. A few preferences stand out to me. He likes long grasses, probably because he can easily rip them free even with his overbite, although it doesn't seem to handicap him as he doesn't lose any time as soon as I give him the "okay" to start grazing. Maybe the longer grasses are the sweetest, the long blades holding more sugar then their cropped neighbors. Or maybe he just doesn't like someone else's seconds! Since he prefers long grasses, this means that he loves to eat along fence lines and gates, under picnic tables, overhangs, and benches. He will drop to a knee to reach under the picnic bench for grass and always inspects the upper surface of the picnic table. A boarder feeds her horse carrots on the table top and Harley knows this! He is usually rewarded for his careful inspection with a few carrot morsels left over or fallen through the cracks of the furniture.
The only "weed" that I can readily identify and observe disappearing into his mouth is the dandelion. Harley loves dandelions, specifically the flowers. He will eat the entire plant, but the flower is never left behind. Sometimes he will stop and nip off the flowers of a couple dandelion plants before abandoning a grazing area for a fresh spot. Horses cannot see at the end of their noses, so how does he identify the plant? Do dandelions have a delicious aroma? Is it the soft, feathery texture? Whatever it is, Harley loves it and rarely misses the yellow delicacies when I am watching him graze after a nice ride or just because.
|There is no where to hide, little dandy! Harley is hunger.|