Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Introducing Prince and Wild

Last Friday was a really exciting day at work. We went to pick up 2 new horses! We've been asking the owner for more horses and he finally pulled through. Two prior race horses from mainland Japan were put into a shipping container, put on a ferry and boated on down to Okinawa.

We went to the Naha seaport to watch the boat come in, dock and unload the containers. A huge crane picked up the horses container off the boat, brought it down to the dock and then a fork lift tractor thingie picked up the container and moved it to it's assigned spot. Of course it was pouring down rain, but nothing could make us more excited to see the new boys for the first time. It was like Christmas!

We don't know too much about these boys except that Wild was never in a race. It looks like he has a prior injury - blew out his knee. And he was gelded only a few days before transport. Prince has been used for riding off the track already, we think. They both sure look like race horses!

The shipping method here in Japan is sure different from what I've seen before. The horses were put in a metal container in non break-away halters, tied to the side. Prince broke his lead rope leaving a metal clasp hanging off his halter and Wild untied his so his was just hanging down so he could trip all over it. The bottom of the container was disgusting, as in like inches of muck. They had buckets of water that promptly spilled everywhere leaving them nothing to drink and even more icky stuff to stand in. Fabulous. But, they both seemed very calm and totally fine with all of it!

I was pretty nervous about how the horses would load onto the trailer, but they both went on just fine. As you can see the "horse trailer" is totally not what we think of in the states. Once we got back to the barn they both came off the trailer fine too except Wild decided to totally skip the ramp and just jump from a stand still cross country style all the way down to our surprise, especially Madie's since she was leading him.

We immediately turned the horses out into the arena so they could stretch their legs after their long journey. Here is a video of them when they were first set loose:

They had fun showing us their moves! Both are super pretty movers. As a side note, in the video I call the horses by the wrong names. Yama goes "I made a mistake!" The names are opposite! Prince is the chestnut and Wild is the young bay.

They also got to go out on the grass for a little bit before we brought them in to look them over and shower them off. Then into the barn they went to meet the other boys and eat their first meal.

I'm totally in love with them already!

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