Grit Blogs > Chasing Goats and Scratching Hogs

The Purpose of A Horse

Recently my husband confessed he wanted a horse. 

"I've always wanted a horse," he said. 

We've been married almost 12 years, and this was certainly news to me.

"What's the point of a horse?" I asked.

I, for the record, am not a horse person. My plan was to fill our farmstead with animals who would provide us with food in return for their feed bill, not simply look pretty while standing in a pasture.

"Seriously? You want a horse?" I asked again.

Yes, he wanted a horse. And some time later, the horse arrived.

 jasper stand
Jasper is an 11 year old quarter horse/thoroughbred who now lives in our barn. Jasper eats lots of feed. And hay. And harasses my goats. He's mowed my pasture down. He won't wear his fly mask. He and I have had words. I often ask him "My goat gives milk and my chickens give eggs...what do you give?"

He very clearly says to me, "I give rides."

 jasper ride 

Well, yes Jasper. I suppose you do that.

Even though I occasionally have words for Jasper, my heart has softened a bit towards him. You see, even though I still consider myself more of a chicken/goat/pig kind of gal, I realize I've figured out what the purpose of a horse is.

jasper jay
My husband likes Jasper. And Jasper makes him happy.

And that's enough purpose for me.

mushrif webmistress
11/14/2012 9:48:55 AM

Lovely Jasper! You can never have enough loving homes for horses. Long may your husband and his boy be happy together!

nebraska dave
8/2/2012 1:42:50 PM

Amy, your conclusion is correct about horses. Their function on a homestead is pretty much nothing more than a pet. There are dogs and cats which can have some protective and mouse control but horses are to be ridden to patrol, view, and enjoy riding around the homestead. They certainly can eat a lot and produce a lot of waste which, by the way, is one of the best fertilizers for the garden compost pile. Many old timer's cold frames used horse manure to heat up the frame while growing their tender plants for the garden in the spring. Horse manure and rabbit waste are two of the best natural fertilizers a gardener can find. So there is an up side to the practical gardener in you. :0) Have a great day in the garden.