Thursday, 15 August 2019

Wouldn't you think a horse could go fast enough under its own steam?

In fact, the faster the horse, the greater the need to have it go at speeds that no horse could possibly attain under its own steam.

Many an average equine plodder will spend its entire life on its own four feet plodding its way happily from  A to B and back again. That's as long as both A and B have a goodly supply of grass or other good foodstuff. 

But if that equine has a swift turn of foot, if it can gallop for miles at high speed, then suddenly there is a need for it to travel much faster, say 60 mph for hundreds of miles as it is taken in the back of a lorry from racecourse to racecourse. Or if it's exceptional in the speed department then it gets to travel at many hundreds of miles per hour in an airborne stable.

And there is money to be made transporting horses, even when you need to employ six other horses to pull the trailer.

Thursday, 18 July 2019

Six horses take a seventh to Doncaster in 1836 - and they don't go by Tardis

The very first horse trailer, so it's said, was built to transport a single horse and was pulled by six horses. That might have a pointless feel to it, but if the story is true then the horse being taken by his six equine mates won a lot of money through being transported in this way to Doncaster.

It's a neat story, summarised HERE.

Jack himself rarely travels by any means other than hoof, but there was one significant journey detailed HERE.

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Don’t mess with a Dawn Horse

Okay, partly don’t mess with a Dawn Horse because being in the position to be able to meddle means you were just transported back in time by about 55 million years, so you’ve more pressing things to pay attention to than messing about with the horse’s earliest ancestor (for emergency access to a Tardis see HERE).

But also, don’t be fooled by its diminutive size. The Dawn Horse was a survivor, it hung around for a long time and founded a huge equine dynasty, and it did it with a more-complete set of teeth than its modern counterpart. Its teeth suggest that its diet was mainly the soft, leafy vegetation that was around back then in the parts of the planet it inhabited. 

Jack is reassured to know that 55 million-year-old soft, leafy vegetation is not the same as grass, hay and carrots, because if there is any suggestion of competition at feeding time, he will personally stand guard on the Tardis the full weekend of 1st and 2nd September making sure that no Dawn Horse bridges the gap.

Thursday, 10 May 2018

The Dawn Horse

Great name for a breed of horse, right? But don’t go searching, you won’t get one these days.

The Dawn Horse, otherwise known as Hyracotherium – not that Jack has any truck with fancy names, and though Hyracotherium might look OK on some fancy breeder’s certificate, the way he sees it there’s just one question to ask about any horse that will tell you all you need to know about it** but no, wait... he’s diverting me again... where was I? 

The Dawn Horse, the Hyracotherium was around in the Paleogene Period, only that’s like saying Stonehenge is in Europe, which it is but that’s no good for directions. And the Paleogene Period lasted for 43 million years, which the Dawn Horse sadly did not. It was plodding the planet 55 million years ago, and it was pretty small; could have looked a young miniature Shetland in the eye, but a modern racehorse only in the shin, so certainly couldn’t have got up to the sort of capers Jack gets up to. Jack notes at this point that he himself would not get up to that sort of stuff without the severest of provocation from that more-energy-than-sense duo, Megan and Amy.

Jack and I share a narrow-eyed glance. We both know we’ve not heard the last of the Dawn Horse, but that’s enough for today. 

**will it attempt to claim gustatory rights over my hay?

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Other loquacious equines

Jack is not the only horse who writes about his life. He accepts that he is getting on a bit and thus doesn’t record anything quite as energetic as Billy Bank in his British Horse Feeds regular blog, but he’d like it to be recognised that in the current mad world, he and his equine friends often show more sense in one front hoof than a bar full of supposedly sentient human beings.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Zonkeys and zebroids

March’s equestrian news reports that the breeding of zebras with horses or donkeys results in zonkeys and zebroids.

What does Jack think about that?

He says, ‘Not in my field!’

Megan Crewe thinks we might be confusing the issues here. Are we into 93-E Contradiction territory?

We’d been thinking Horse of a Different Colour but good question.

Jack? Are you taking this seriously?

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Seeing the right colour

February’s horse fact: horses are not colour blind but they can see greens and yellows much better than other colours.

What does Jack think about that?

He thinks it’s pretty obvious. The best food is green. Who needs to see further than that?