Those that follow our blog may be interested to learn how our unicorn is getting on. Last year we wrote that we were becoming concerned about the lonely white horse living in the oak forest opposite the house with winter approaching, and, having consulted a local veterinarian, had decided to start feeding him. Of course, like any animal in need of rescuing, feeding him brought him to the house and he chooses not to leave. After much thought and discussion, we named him Oberon, after Shakespeare's King of the Fairies in a Midsummer Night's Dream. Guests love meeting him and watching him wander around the grounds.
Oberon has settled into life at La Cazalla extremely well. He's very calm and never troubled by the comings and goings of vehicles and different people. The vet has confirmed that he is doing well for his age, despite his many years without care and attention. We managed to discover his full story: Oberon's original owner had died of old age and the surviving children just didn't know what to do with him. They are happy for him to live at La Cazalla now. Astonishingly, a brand on his shoulder made after his castration identifies Oberon to be at least 25 years old and he is in remarkable condition, considering his years alone. A touch of laminitis is all, and we are working on this to keep him comfortable, even if we can't always keep him clean! (He doesn't much like to be fussed over, but tolerates basic attention, especially if you have carrots or parsnips.)
The one thing that we really wanted to do for Oberon was find a companion for him. He's lived on his own for SO long and was spending much of his time at the fence of our neighbour's property, because they have two horses there. His loneliness made us feel so sad. However, we are pleased to report that this weekend, this happened:
Just look at how happy he is, holding his head high, running around like a youngster and showing off! Oberon's new friends are a chestnut mare called Boticaria, and Rociana and her foal, Rociera. We are very grateful to Juan Jesús for bringing a few horses from his stables. Juan needed a place for his younger horses to 'live like horses for a while' before they are trained at the stables, so Oberon will continue to meet new girlfriends every so often. We think he's pretty happy with the arrangement.