We learned a lot about "Shorty" for the We'd Love to Own department. So much so, that we couldn't put it all in one article. Learn more about the fun-loving gelding in this interview with his owner Diana Davidson of Franktown, Colorado. The 2000 sorrel AQHA gelding is a Western riding specialist and is trained by Chad Evans of Parker, Colorado.
H&R:What is Shorty's personality like?
Diana: Well it depends on whether you're on the ground, in his stall, or on his back. On his back, he's a perfect gentleman. If you're in his stall, he pins his ears and gives you this look like "get out of my stall." (Laughs) And if you're getting ready to turn him out?and he knows it?he acts like a stud horse instead of the nice gelding that he is. Oh my gosh, we love our turnout.
H&R:What sorts of things does he do?
Diana: When you're leading him out, he blows up, he snorts, and he prances and trots along beside you. When you put him out into the pen, if you don't hold on really tight, when you let him go, he turns around, pivots, bucks, kicks, and runs around like a crazy guy.
So you have to be really careful and get out of the pen fast or make sure you have a hold of him so he can't get loose while you take the lead rope off. But the thing is, when you get on him, he's always perfect?always. Never a buck, never fussy. He just goes out and does exactly what he knows he supposed to do.
H&R:What's the funniest thing he's ever done?
Diana: It was before I owned him. He's kind of an escape artist. You have to make sure you shut the stall door when you go in there?even when you're cleaning, you've got to have the wheelbarrow in front of the door. If you're getting ready to saddle him, you have to tie him up or shut the door behind you because he's an escape artist.
He will take off, and he won't just mosey out of his stall. He'll take off and go running down the aisleways. At one of the shows, one of the girls had a hold of his tail as he was running down the aisleway. She's holding on to his tail trying to stop him, and it didn't work until some guy stood at the other end of the aisle with his arms up. Then Shorty finally stopped. That was quite funny.
H&R: When were you the most proud of him?
Diana: It's like every time we show, because he loves to show. He's such a trouper, and he works really hard at doing his job. He's a showman. He's loves Western riding and trail; he loves his job. The best thing that happened was when we were at a show in Las Vegas, not this March, but last March, and we had a severe thunderstorm come up. The fire alarms and strobe lights came on all over the facility. And the sirens started going off just as we started our Western riding pattern. One of the strobe lights was right at the end of the line.
We had just started our pattern, and I didn't know if I should stop or go. So I just kept going. Other horses were freaking out, and he did the whole pattern, didn't miss a beat, and I think we won under all three judges. He started to elevate just a little bit and look at the strobe lights, but I just closed my legs around him, and he went "OK Mom, I got it." It was so cool. And everybody in the audience clapped, and you know they don't do that very often at horse shows. He was such a good boy.
H&R:How long have you owned him?
Diana: It's been 4 years.
H&R: What events does he do?
Diana: He does trail and Western riding, sometimes horsemanship, but I don't make him do that very much. He used to do pleasure. In fact, he was the highest winning money earner 2-year-old for years and years.
H&R:Does he have a favorite treat?
Diana: Peppermints; he loves peppermints.
H&R: What is he like to ride?
Diana: He's just a joy to ride. You never have to get nervous on him, and he's very quiet. Plus, he's just comfortable to ride?some horses are and some aren't.
H&R:What are you looking forward to the most about the AQHA Select World at the end of August?
Diana: I enjoy the show a lot. I enjoy the pattern and the trail. They're always a challenge for us. Tim Kimura does really challenging courses at the world show. In Western riding, Shorty can compete with the best of them, so we're just looking forward to a good show.
H&R:Anything else we should know?
Diana: He's just kind and awesome. He's a good 'ole boy!