Twister spent the summer taking care of Reno, the orphan foal. He was quite wonderful at it. He seemed to know that Reno needed shepherding and comfort, and was quite willing to put up with baby shenanigans. So good at, in fact, that all three foals spent much of their time cavorting around him, chewing on his mane, or generally hanging out with him. The two mares got so comfortable with him that they left him to babysit much of the time and wandered off to do lunch by themselves. But when Reno got tired of one of the other foal’s rough play and ran back to Twister for protection, the big guy (bigger than babies anyway) would glare at Al (it is usually Al who causes trouble) and send him scurrying back to his mom. Esmerelda, who is our only filly this year, was so enamoured of Twister that she’d stand chewing his neck and/or licking him for long stretches. Twister put up with everything with grace and good cheer. Never biting or kicking any of them. Just the occasional glare when they got totally out of control.
Twister helped some with the weaning process. But it was obvious that Reno had grown up enough that he really didn’t need him. Reno is so confident that the other two foals took a great deal of comfort from him.
Last night I took the truck and trailer down to the farm at evening feed. Jen loaded up her pony while I fed, and we brought him home. There was a fair bit of excitement here as everyone welcomed him home… well, perhaps welcomed is the wrong word. There was a lot of crazed herd dynamics. Twister had to kick King, since King was being a bit pushy. But then Diego joined the mix, and that was bad. Diego is not polite about his heirarchical machinations. He gets downright ugly about it. So Twister got to go into the small side paddock for the night.
Twister, Nikita, and King will all be put in a separate paddock this winter anyway, since they are the “fat ponies”, so it is not a crisis if it takes a while for Diego and Twister to come to terms.