When we first met Bugsy he was busy being was a total disaster as a lesson pony at the big, busy barn where we were taking lessons.
He was impossible to catch in the field. The owner's daughter was the only person who could catch him -- and then one day he kicked her, hard, right in the chest.
What happens to a naughty pony? They can end up at auction, a dangerous place for a pony. They can end up anywhere even a slaughter truck..
Luckily, the barn owner cared about where Bugsy went, even though she was really mad at him for kicking her daughter.
She thought our then-7-year old daughter Djuna might be a good match for him. She offered, and we said YES! (If we had known then what we know now, we never would have taken him! But we were new to country life and couldn't believe we were being offered a FREE PONY!)
Bugsy and Djuna met and they clicked. So much of YA horse literature is about the love story between a kid and their horse. Two misfits, no one else understands them -- until they find each other. So much of this is true with horses. There is chemistry. We got this with Djuna and Bugsy. She was a timid rider. He was a misunderstood pony. They just loved each other.
And then, on our little farm Bugsy figured himself out. It turns out maybe he was just really shy and the big barn was too much for him.
He made an equine best friend, Jasmine (another FREE PONY, also a little misunderstood, although she never quite rehabilitated!). He stopped being hard to catch. He stopped even thinking about kicking us. He went from naughty pony to dream pony.
And then we discovered one of his greatest talents -- giving pony rides and lessons to even the littlest children.They say that some horses and ponies "take care of their riders". Bugsy does exactly this.
Bugsy has carried kids as young as two years old, and it seems like he tiptoes, he is so careful. He has given rides to kids with a variety of special needs, and he is just as careful. It is no wonder that so many of our returning kids call him "MY pony, Bugsy".
He is a special pony, and we are so lucky to have him, and delighted to share him with our guests. Rides on Bugsy are included in farm camp, as often as kids want.
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I'm Larissa. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved animals, and always felt the urge to MAKE things. In my farm life, I get to pursue both these paths. Luckily, my husband and kids feel the same way.