Ok so this is a bit of a soppy “I love my pony” post but if you can’t write it on her birthday, when can you?

My baby Shelley aka Smelly is turning 26 but as far as she’s concerned it’s just the twentieth time she’s turned 6!

To be fair, dear pony, most of the time I’d believe you if you did say you were 6 when you’re charging around setting off all the others off in the field. But sadly your legs show your age, the wear and tear but also proof of all the amazing things you’ve done and achieved!

It's my birthday so I'm not getting up for no one!

It’s my birthday so I’m not getting up for no one!

When we got you, we weren’t really looking for a horse. My young horse was injured and it was a week before my last ever pony club camp, which I was desperate to go to. We tried a few potential horses on loan but none of them clicked. Then a friend told us about an advert of a horse for sale which would fit the bill and was cheap, but it’s downside was that the advert was originally published 6 months previously. Luckily for us you were still there, your poor conformation and stallion crest had put others off, not to mention the fact your gut was so large that your sides touched the stable door frame each time you walked through! When I got on, the smile on my face couldn’t be wiped off, despite my parents puzzled looks into why I loved you. We were given you on trial for camp, where my instructor thought exactly the same as my parents in “What the hell are you thinking?” only to leave at the end of the week practically giving us the money to buy you after we won practically every award going!

Throughout the years you took me everywhere I wanted to go and beyond. Every time we thought we’d reached your limit, you tried your hardest to prove us wrong. Sometimes it may not have gone perfectly but the experience you gave me is priceless. Father may blame you for us needing a bigger and better truck due to all the national championships you qualified us for, but really he loved the fact you did it for us every time!

Horse of a lifetime

Horse of a lifetime

 The fact I’ve fell off you less times than the number of fingers on one hand just shows your nature. You’re still the only one my mother could stomach to watch me jump cross country despite you taking me over some of the biggest tracks I’ve ever done!

You nearly bankrupted us due to all the pretty poses you did in front of a photographer!

You nearly bankrupted us due to all the pretty poses you did in front of a photographer!

At 26 and after a few years in retirement, you’d think you’d be wanting to slow down, but NO; you’re still the only one on the yard that has to be lead around with a racing chifney.

You’re still the muskiest horse I’ve ever stabled. We’ve tried and failed to train you to be clean, I’m pretty sure you know exactly what we want you to do and do the opposite just because you can! You’ll trash the box but then flutter your eyes and you know I can’t be mad at you for too long…but your nickname Smelly has been given to you for a reason!

I can tell you don’t understand when we pull the horsebox ramp down and load up the ‘young’uns’ but not you. It makes me sad too but I know if we just took you along for a jolly in the horse box you wouldn’t be contempt unless I got you off and I got on & took you around the XC course too!

So to celebrate your birthday, I can’t say I’ll treat you like a princess because that’s what you are and that’s how you deserve to be treat every day! But we’ll spend the day cuddling and giving you new gifts (although I know you will only care about the edible treats!). I expect you to continue telling the others off as you are top dog and always will be but if they cause you trouble, come see me and I’ll have words with them as they have a long way to go to achieve your greatness!

Are these my Birthday Presents?

Are these my Birthday Presents?

My only regret with you is that we found you when you were already 16 and not 6. Nonetheless, here’s to another 10 happy years, my beauty.

Emma