Monday, July 23, 2012

Packing a Little Punch

This week I’m giving you a break from my chatter about Roxy, my lesson horse at Touchstone Farm. Instead, I’m introducing you to another of my favorites at the farm, Punch, the smallest of the farm’s mini-horses.

Dare ya not to smile.
Punch’s height tops out around 30 inches (I’m being generous here). That makes him approximately the size of a modestly built sheep. I know this because he was standing next to one of the farm’s sheep in their paddock when I visited them on Sunday afternoon.

Boo guesses that Punch is about 21 years old, and he definitely has some years of seniority at the farm. Like most Touchstone Farm horses, he fills multiple roles.

Punch is your go-to guy if you are a quite small person who wants to ride. He’s also the horse to meet if you are small – or large – and are drawn to the magic of horses but are a little fearful of them, too. No one could be afraid of Punch.

I mean, just look at him. Are you not smiling at his round shaggy self?

I’ve seen a lot of Punch this summer because he is on the equine staff of Barnyard Buddies summer day camp. His camp responsibilities strike me as the job he was born for. He pulls Barnyard Buddies campers in a light carriage. He's available for meet-and-greets. He also makes an excellent live model for learning equine anatomy.

He's small but he's got all the essential parts.

Punch parties like it's 1999.
My point in talking about Punch is more than showing you cute pictures of a cute horse. I'm coming to understand the Touchstone Farm herd and realize it is much more than a collection of nice horses. These are working animals, and they have very specific abilities. The farm staff carefully selects and trains the right horses for roles only they can fill. That takes time and a lot of experience with horses.

Punch is aged and chubby and very small, but he is very valuable to the farm. He also has a fan club to rival Roxy's. After all, Roxy may be a wonderful lesson and therapeutic riding horse, but I can tell you right now that she wouldn't be caught dead in that tie.

See you around the farm.

Kathy McDonald
Rider and Volunteer at Touchstone Farm

1 comment:

  1. From now on I'm using the sheep as a height reference for everything. Thank you for introducing Punch!