Even though I JUST recovered from my Thanksgiving feast, I am already gearing up for more holiday dinners and sweet treats! I’ve been taking advantage of this festive holiday season to eat all the little goodies I could swindle from my caretakers! They are always careful not to over-feed me, because that could lead to some serious health problems. When humans overeat they may need to spend a couple of days at the gym, but when horses overeat, it could be deadly!
Have you ever heard the phrase, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth?” Ever wonder what it means? Today, it means to be thankful for a gift (even if you secretly want something better) and don’t take something given to you for free for granted; but the roots of the phrase go back to when horses were used for everyday work, and when people depended on them for survival.
Did you know you can tell a horse’s age by examining its teeth? I ask because to understand the phrase, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth,” you should know how to estimate a horse’s age.
Last week, the Equine Science Center was well represented at the first Dorothy Havemeyer Foundation Equine Geriatric Workshop. That means that a bunch of scientists and veterinarians got together to talk about old horses – one of my favorite topics!
You’ll never guess what happened last week when I went apple picking – there were no apples! No matter where we looked, all the apples had already been harvested. All we could find were tomatoes (Yuck!). I was really bummed out until later in the week when a couple of pretty cool things happened…
The extremely dry summer we had finally took its toll on me a few weeks ago; therefore, I haven’t been able to type with my hoof for a while. Let me tell you what happened…
Several weekends ago my owner arrived at the farm to notice that I wouldn’t move and had assumed a stretched out stance which looked like I was straining to urinate. He immediately thought I was colicking and ran into the pasture to offer assistance, but once he saw that I had just finished my large breakfast (like I would EVER miss a meal!), attention was drawn away from my belly to my left leg. I simply could not put my weight on it; it really hurt!
Do you remember my pal Frankie? She starred in “Horses on Treadmills?!” here on Equine Science 4 Kids! Well, she is back along with some of my other friends from the Equine Science Center. Take the new Equine Exercise Physiology Laboratory virtual tour on the Equine Science Center website.
It’s going to be another great week for horses and horse-people in New Jersey! This Friday, Saturday, and Sunday is the New Jersey State 4-H Championship Horse Show. Young equestrians from all over the Garden State who have advanced from their county shows will be competing in different events, such as Western and English riding, Driving, and Dressage.
Have you had a chance to check out the Ryders Lane Virtual Tour on the Equine Science Center website (http://www.esc.rutgers.edu/rlp/rl_virtual_tour.htm)? There you can find all kinds of cool information about what farmers, particularly horse farmers, can do to keep the environment clean.
My ears were burning last week, and it wasn’t because of the heat! People were talking about me!
Some of my friends from the Equine Science Center attended the annual meeting of the American Society of Animal Science in Denver. They wanted to spread the word about Equine Science 4 Kids, but most of the professors and students at the meeting already knew about our website and yours truly! Some were a little confused though; they thought my name was Prince Nelson, or King Nelson. I’m normally pretty happy to be called Nelson, but I REALLY like the sound of “King Nelson.”
I’m Lord Nelson, a American Quarter Horse.
My first job at Rutgers University was on mounted patrol. I also carried the Scarlet Knight mascot at football games. One day I became famous when I got excited, stepped onto the field and became the only horse in history to receive a penalty in a football game! And I’m curious and mischievous! I love to be outside, so don’t ever leave my stall door open. I love all kinds of food – just about nothing at a picnic is safe. I also don’t like cheese puffs. That cheetah on the bag scares me to death! After 22 years on mounted patrol, I’m proud to be back, working for the Rutgers Equine Science Center and telling everyone what I know.