That's a wonderful story of enduring love. I'm sorry about the challenges you have had personally and then Seneca's foundering but I always like hearing stories of people who stick with their horses even when they aren't the easiest to manage.
She looks very sweet!
Thank you for your words. She is very sweet! But it did not always appear to be so. I had been told that she would put her head in a halter, to go to and from barn and pasture, in her prior home. At first, once she understood I would feed in pans on the ground, and she had no incentive to let me put a halter on, nor touch her in any way, that's what happened. Even is she had grain in her pan, if I approached, she would leave it to avoid having to be touched. It took months and months, first to be able to touch her even. I didn't put her up in a stall, rather had 3 Arabians who had an open barn to go to. I well remember the night in the dark, cold winter, when I was bringing out an armload of hay to spread around, and she accidentally met me directly in the dark at the barn door, then began to eat hay from my arms. I wisely just stood still while she ate, for a while. That was the first for her to willingly accept me near her. Another ABNer suggested I feed her grain by holding the pan in my arms. I remember that first winter, holding the flat pan in my arms, and her eating out of it, rain and snow and sun, for months. I began by touching her cheek lightly, then her neck. Ever so gradually, her shoulder. Over months. I imagine she had ulcers then, but it wasn't clear to me, nor veterinarians, until later. Once I touched her with a brush, she was incredibly sensitive, would not abide a stff brush, for at least a couple of years more. Now she's fine with it, and with grooming in general. I remember the first winter, looking at her mud caked self, not able to remove it, thinking she was a rather ugly girl. She's put her ears back then, if one was close, but it was always a "don't mess with me" message, not "I'm going to bite you" one. It was years before she began to perk ears forward when I fed her. It seems to have been good for her to be a lone horse, as well. She's such a boss, if another mare is around, she is on high alert to keep them in order. A gelding she tolerates better, as they seem to naturally say "Whatever you say, dear." Finally, after losing my gelding, I kept a little pony mule gelding for a year. He didn't challenge her, but wasn't overawed by her. He taught her to not get all hot and bothered by gun shots nearby. Prior to that, my Arabians would run around in that beautiful way, whenever my neighbor shot, which is sometimes often. I think that change also contributed to her getting foundered, as it removed another natural exercise. With my broken leg, etc, I couldn't do much.
So, as another friend suggested, being a lone horse might help her warm up to me, and that's what has happened. She is now affectionate to me, is totally at ease with my dogs being close, even taking bits from her feed while she's eating! She's still a hot Arabian, and as long as we have a set routine, you only see the sweet side. However, if I vary, ask her to do new things, she can get pretty excited. So I've had two trainers tell me not to get on her unless there's a professional there! My trainer Robbie, reassures me I don't have to ride her, or give her some idea (mine) of being used, that she and I can be very happy as we are. He teaches her and me how to make it better between us.
So, I have toyed with looking for another horse, one that I could ride easily, a solid citizen, calm, bomb proof, so to speak. I"d like to go on trail rides. I'm now 70 years old! In my early 60s, I went after a goal of starting to do endurance riding. That was the reason I looked for Arabians. I thought I'd learn to train them, start to ride again, and breed one also. That's not how it worked out. So now I'm enjoying learning to train her in small ways, and being amazed at how intelligent she is. Getting another horse would add back more excitement to the mix. I still consider it, not sure how that will go.
Here's her breeding:
There's some well known names there. She's a gggd of Morafic, and I read he was a handful, also!