Today (8 June 2017) is National Best Friend Day (who knew such a thing even existed?), but we all know most riders’ best friend has four legs and a tail.
But sometimes, even the dearest of equine pals can make you wish you could just sink through the floor. We take a tongue-in-cheek look at the times your horse just didn’t deserve that best friend tag…
1. That time you gave him an all over bath and manicure, waited for him to dry, then freed him in the field — and he promptly trotted off and rolled in the only mud patch.
2. When you were so excited to be in the warm-up at the same time as Mary King (or William Fox-Pitt or Lucinda Green) and then he refused at a tiny cross-pole and you fell off.
3. The joyous occasion when you stopped at a road junction with a big queue of traffic behind you and he took the world’s longest pee. Oh yes, and your childhood enemy’s mother was just coming out of the shop right next door. Shame he didn’t quite manage to spread the flood over her suede shoes.
4. Dressage test farting. For the whole length of the arena. Need we say more?
5. And the time he decided to do a muck just as you were putting on his hind boots. Without any warning. And you had clean hair, for once.
6. Oh yes, the time you snuck out of work early to ride, then had to take a call while hacking and he totally gave you away by letting out a massive whinny. “Oh yes, I’m in the office. It’s just the… it’s an advert playing on a website, sorry.”
7. When you told the vet/dentist/farrier he’s a total softie and he immediately took a massive chunk out of them with his teeth.
8. He took a snack from a hedge while you were riding past. While the hedge owner was standing on the pavement trimming said hedge.
9. When he dumped you in a dressage test. In the walk section. Enough said.
There's little doubt that your horse knows exactly…
10. A nice lady you met out hacking asked if she could feed him her apple core. He chewed it up, then spat it out all over her.
11. That time he decided to lie down in the water jump when you were cross-country schooling, in front of two groups of giggling Pony Clubbers.