Pet of the Day

September 11, 1998

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Annie, the Pet of the Day
Name: Annie
Age: 20 years old
Gender: Female
Kind: American Saddle Horse
Tennessee Walker
Home: Franklin, West Virginia, USA
   A horse is maybe an unusual nominee for Pet of the Day, but Annie is an exception. I've had her for two years now, and she has brought so much joy and light to my life that I can hardly describe it. Annie has a very sweet and gentle personality... though she can be very wild at times too. But I love every moment with her. There's never a dull moment with her around. I've ridden her almost every day, rain or shine, since I've gotten her, and over all of those miles we've developed a strong bond. She'll do anything I ask of her, though sometimes she does like to get in a good argument first :-) And a lot of times I don't even have to use voice or hand signals of any kind, she knows what I want of her....she senses it...and she does it. She is very perceptive to my moods, and adjusts herself to fit me. She knows when I want to run, and have a wild ride, and when I want to think and just walk along one of the many forest paths surrounding our home. I am so used to talking to her... sharing all of my thoughts and feelings during our rides, that now I do it unconsciously :-)

    Annie is a very special part of my life, and I hope to share a few more fantastic years with her before I go off to college and start a new life. I know that I must leave her behind then, for this is where she belongs. She loves the mountains, she was born and raised here and I would never take her away. I know that the day I leave her will be one of the hardest of my life. But I'll have the assurance that she'll still be in good hands, and never be sold to someone that would mistreat her. I will always have the memories, and the stories I can share with my children some day. Annie truly is the light of my life, and I'll continue to make many more happy memories with her for a few more years.

    I just found out Annie's exact age a few weeks ago. The best the man I got her from could figure was that she was 16 or 17 by this time. I happened to run into his first wife, she stopped me as I was riding one day. And she was able to tell me Annie was born in 1978. My little girl is 20 years old! No one I tell will believe that. Especially the horse people. In all ways, she still looks like a young horse. She has the endurance and stamina of a 4-year-old, and the beauty and form. I've never seen a horse her age who wasn't depleting in beauty, sway-backed. Annie is the exception. At first I had worried that I had her on to heavy a schedule for a horse her age. But on talking to several horse people, one a vet, they tell me that the schedule I've had her on has probably been good for keeping her in shape. They told me not to slack to much off. And I'm just as happy with that arrangement.

    Just yesterday, Annie and I took a three hour ride through the mountains. It was beautiful. Someday, I'd like to write a book about our adventures, and the things we've seen. Deer, baby racoons, signs of bear, bobcats, skunks. You name it, we've likely seen it :-) When I start talking about her, I can hardly stop! She's my pride and joy. I keep a busy schedule between work and school, but I always leave her at least an hour and a half a day in there. Sometimes she's the only thing that keeps me sane! You wouldn't believe what a short ride will do for the heart and soul. I always come back so refreshed, ready to take on the world :-) And I'm so happy she's been a part of my life.

    This is Annie's page. I will be adding more pictures of her to it soon. It's called Heidi's Horse Page. It's not much yet, but I'm working on it. I also have pages of my other pets.

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