By Hilda Szabo – Saskatoon, Sask.
I had a very intelligent horse called ‘Chester,’ a purebred Arabian. His registered name was Par el Sadat. Chester thought he was invincible and also thought he was human.
When the water would stop working, he would stand at my husband’s shoulder and watch to see how he fixed the waterer.
Next time when the water wasn’t working properly we saw him try to flip the lid up and have a look how to fix it himself.
He considered himself the herd guardian. One time a little mare had gotten a twig caught in her halter and she was frightened and trying to run from it. Chester chased her down and grabbed the twig from her halter so she wouldn’t be frightened anymore.
We had another horse named ‘Barny’ that liked to walk through fences. Barny, the Percheron, could hear when the electric fencer quit working and because of his size he would just push on the fence until he could walk out.
When the fence was down, Chester would stand guard to make sure none of the other horses would go out.
One time all the horses did get out, and lo and behold, we saw Chester herding them back home and into the fence.
Would tease other horses
Chester liked to rearrange his living space. We had a bunch of 16-foot rails sitting in pasture and he decided he wanted them elsewhere, so one at a time he moved them all to another location.
A neighbour saw him doing that and thought that he was hooked on the rail and came to tell us about it, but, no, he was just doing his thing. We expected to see him doing just about anything.
Chester was a tease. He liked to tease my daughter’s horse who was afraid of sticks by chasing him with a stick. He would also chase the other horses with an old inner tube. He thought that was great sport!
Chester was, however, the perfect babysitter for our newly-weaned foals. You would have thought he owned those foals the way he took care of them!
When the vets came, he understood that they were there to help him.
One time we had to be gone when the vet came to remove a sarcoid from just below his ear. Since they knew our place well, they said they’d just come and use the barn for the surgery and put him out in our isolation paddock.
When we came home, Chester appeared to be telling us all about it and made a big deal of showing us what happened while we were gone. The veterinarian said he was a real gentleman about it all.
Chester was a good show horse and won many ribbons. He also was a good trail horse, who was sensible and never tired out. Chester always took care of me. What a horse he was!