Z-The Horse Who Loved Me
My mare Z, or Ziad's Minnie,
was my best friend, but unfortunately she passed on October the 20th,
2007 due to a freak accident. She was an Appendix Quarter Horse whose
bloodline included Man O'War and War Admiral. She died at an early age of
20 years old. I feel that was an early age because she was going to live
here with us forever, even if she was only a pasture ornament. I knew her
1 year and 8 months. This is her story while we knew her...
I rode horses as a child
due to my dad's love for horses and owned one up until I met and married
my husband in 1990. My husband knew how I loved horses and promised me that
one day I would get another one. It took almost 16 years, but I finally got
Z in February of 2006. The previous Christmas, we had bought our 14 year-old
daughter a horse for Christmas and that's when we started our little
farm. We went to look at Z on a rainy Saturday. If anyone else would have
seen her, they would not have bought her. She was underweight, cracked hoofs
and a dull coat. She was lifeless!!!
I told my husband to see if we could take her home, meaning we try
her out, but he thought I meant that I wanted to buy her. I'll have to admit
that I really was not that excited to have her because of her looks. I did
not take any full body pictures because I was ashamed. I now wish I
had taken pictures so you could see before and after pictures. We started
feeding her properly and taking care of her hoofs. She turned out to be the
most beautiful horse with a nice shiny coat and veins that showed in the
summer. I came to find out that she had been trained on the race track in
her younger days but had never been in a race. Boy, could she run!!! And
she loved it and so did I. She always asked me to let her run and sometimes
I would have to hold her back.
We did a lot of trail rides together along with the other three horses we
ended up with. Z's bottom lip had a habit of hanging low and sometimes while
riding you could hear the bottom lip hitting the top lip. She also would
twist her top lip around as if she was trying to talk. It was quite comical
at times. She always took good care of me while we rode. She never acted
ugly, but she was a horse who loved to run and would not listen to someone
who did not take control.
On the day she passed away, only her and I went for a ride on the road.
We could not ride the trails because of the hunters. It was a beautiful day
with a light breeze. While we were gone, she had asked me to let her run,
but I held her back. I did not want her to overheat because it was a warm
day and she had started to grow her winter coat. When we got about a half
mile from home, I let her run to the left side of the road, facing traffic,
never thinking in a million years that it would be our last run. As I felt
her go faster, she all of a sudden stumbled and started to go down.
I fought to keep myself in the saddle and to slow her down. When we came
to a stop, I got off and to my horror, her right front leg was broken at
the pastern and the bone was coming through the skin. She did not act as
if it was hurting her but I wanted to lay her down. A neighbor came by and
saw me on the side of the road and stopped to help, thinking that I was injured.
I called my husband and told him to come quickly and bring his gun, knowing
what had to be done. She was losing blood quickly and I knew that there was
no way we could get her to the vet in time. When my husband arrived I was
hysterical. We took her saddle and bridle off, thinking she would not go
anywhere, but we were wrong. She took off running up the road on three legs
with the hoof hanging there. She stopped in someone's yard and began eating
grass. She must not have felt any pain. She was still quickly losing blood
and knew what had to be done. My husband could not shoot her so he asked
the neighbor, who was the first to help, to do it. I fell to the ground
dreading to see what was going to happen. Finally, after getting up the nerve,
the neighbor did what we asked of him. At that moment, I lost it as well
as my husband. I cried and cried on her neck telling her how sorry I was
for letting her get injured. Why did I let her run?? Why did it happen to
Afterwards, we took her home on a trailer and buried her in the backyard.
It has been a hard week and I still sometimes think it is just a nightmare
hoping to wake up. My best friend was gone!!! I loved Z and I felt she loved
me back. We just clicked! Never will I find another horse as great as her.
I know she is in heaven running with Barbaro. My friend, I anticipate the
day we will one day be together again.
Your forever friend,