Meeting the Chubby Bottom Boys
After three years of looking for a reliable team of small drafts I decided to consider a team of Haflingers or Norwegian Fjords for our wagon, carriage and sleigh rides. After several visits and perusing many ads I found a post on Facebook about a pair of stout brothers that had previously been pulling ponies. Six and seven years of age, Jim and Bob were gorgeous and fat from lack of use. Their owner had been focusing on his grandson’s team so Jim and Bob needed a new home that would use them.
The owner knew about Carousel Horse Farm and we had actually met a few times years ago through the Farmers Draft Horse Club. We agreed on a time and the owner hooked Jim and Bob up to a drag and off we went for a drive. They were perfect. Going in nothing but a snaffle. I didn’t expect the owner to know much about their riding history but he was pretty sure the old owners girlfriend and her son had trail ridden them.
Bringing Them Home
This was good news. Even though they may not be experienced under saddle it was likely they wouldn’t buck or be difficult while we trained them to ride. I asked the owner if I could bring the girls over to back them one day before I made my decision. He didn’t hesitate just said, “Come get them and try them out at your farm for as long as you want. I just want a good home for them.”
Why They are Staying at Carousel Horse Farm
So we picked Jim and Bob up and brought them home. They were respectful of fences, great for the farrier and led and loaded extremely well. So far so good. A few days after arrival we did our best to fit two saddles to their flat wide backs and slowly mounted and rode them around the ring. They went perfectly away from each other and following. So we tried a trot, excellent. We decided to ask for a canter, expecting no experience in this but wondering how they would react to being asked something new, Bob cantered without effort and consistently! Jim, not so much.
Now its been three months, we’ve had them driving as a team on the trails and on roads with lots of traffic, from dump trucks, to tractor trailers and motorcycles. They are great! After fitting them with breast collars, special girths and rear girths we’ve managed to fit a saddle on them that will stay in place and started using them on the trails. We guide with them regularly and Jim is excellent with the customers. Bob needs a little time with trust issues but is coming along nicely and leading experienced skill level rides as well as beginner.
Where You Can See the Chubby Bottom Boys this Winter
We can’t wait to work with them this coming Christmas Season at the Seadogs and Naples Christmas Festival. They are hard workers and in great shape! Very personable, they enjoy attention from strangers. We affectionately call them the Chubby Bottom Boys, a spoof on the Soggy Bottom Boys from the movie “O’ Brother Where Art Thou”.