Prince Gold Twist

Prince Gold Twist was born on April 22, 1975. I got him in 1977, when I was 10. After I showed him a year, a girl came up to me and told me that was her horse. I got indignant and told her he was not! He was mine! Anyway, she explained that he used to be her horse, and her dad couldn't train him (he hated men riders), so they sold him. We became best friends, and I am friends with that girl to this day. He was my first horse that was my very own. I had ridden horses on the farm where my dad worked since I was three, but that wsn't the same. I trained him myself for Western Pleasure. He was what I called a left handed horse. He just couldn't seem to step off on his right lead no matter what. I got creative and once he learned, he never forgot. He did really well in Western Pleasure, winning every class he was entered in and 1st highpoint year end award in the adult and open classes also! When he was 10 years old, I started running him in barrels. He place 3rd in his first competition out of 26 horses. Unfortunately, he couldn't stand the strain of barrel racing, his knees started to bother him in a fast run. I retired him for a few years.

When he was thirteen, and my daughter was three, we brought him back out of retirement. His knees seemed fine for her to ride. She showed him in Western Pleasure by herself when she was only 3. Her legs wouldn't reach down his sides to cue him, so she told him "walk, jog, wope, weverse, and whoa. He also listened to the announcer to help her out. She continued to win award after award on him. She retired him again when he was 18 and she moved on to barrel racing. 

He lived out the rest of his life, until he was 27 years old, on a 20 acre pasture eating grass as God intended a horse to live. A lot of people condemned me because he was looking poorly and they thought I should have stabled him, but he wasn't happy in a stall. I knew he was going downhill and losing weight, but as long as he didn't seem to be hurting, I wasn't going to end his life. He was still getting enjoyment out of life. He still loped up the hill to meet me when I came to feed him. In fact, he loped up the hill the night before I had to put him down.

We went to the pasture on June 29, 2003 and he was laying down and didn't get up, so I knew something was wrong. He tried, but just couldn't. While we were waiting for the vet to arrive, I fed him almost 50 pounds of Equine Senior feed, I had just bought a bag, didn't have anything else to feed it to, and it wasn't like it was going to hurt him. He ate every bite! He was really a chow hound. I remember one time he figured out how to lift the lid of a hog feeder and ate almost 50 pounds of whole corn. We had to take him to the vet and get all kids of shots to keep him from foundering. He loved his feed, so I feel like he left this world happy. I held his head as the vet administered the medication, he told me he might panic a little, but he didn't. He just calmly laid his head on my lap and drifted off to sleep. I buried him under a tree in his pasture with his head facing east to watch the rising sun.

I will never forget him, and there will never be another to take his place in our family.

Nancy Hamm

Prince's Support Group Honoree page.

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