Flower-stealing Shetland reunited with the Queen

  • The cheeky Shetland pony who tried to nibble The Queen’s flowers during a recent royal visit has met Her Majesty again this week.

    LCpl Cruachan IV, the regimental mascot of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, was on his — almost — best behaviour this time.

    The Shetland joined the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders to welcome The Queen to Balmoral Castle for her annual holiday on 7 August.

    However, keen to be the centre of attention, the mischievous pony reportedly let out a loud whinny after Her Majesty had finished inspecting troops and was walking away.

    The Queen is said to have replied: “Oh we know where you are!”

    The pony hit headlines in July after taking a well-timed swipe at a bouquet The Queen had been given as she arrived for mass at Stirling Castle.

    But the monarch was too quick for him and tucked the bunch behind her back, adding: “they always try to eat the flowers”.

    Fans of LCpl Cruachan, who also celebrated his ninth birthday on 7 August, will be pleased to hear the pony has recovered well after a bout of colic at the end of last month. He was treated at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

    The pony “tweeted” the good news that his impaction had passed and he was “on the mend” on 30 July.

    The gelding started his service as regimental mascot in 2012, taking over the role from Cruachan III who had retired aged 23.

    The name Cruachan comes from the war cry of Clan Campbell and he leads the regiment on parade on formal occasions and represents the regiment at events across Scotland.

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    Meanwhile at Buckingham Palace, two other regimental mascots took part in the changing of the guard.

    The 1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment’s Swaledale ram, Private Derby XXXI, and the 1st Battalion Irish Guards’ Irish wolfhound, Domhnall, went on parade.

    It was planned that they would take part in a prestigious handover of duties in front of the palace, but the ram was taken ill and returned to Wellington Barracks.

    However, the pair did have the chance to meet face-to-face at the barracks beforehand.

    Making reference to the upcoming high-profile boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor, Cpl Philip Thornton, The Mercian Regiment’s Ram Major, quipped: “In terms of a face-off it was better than anything Mayweather and McGregor could come up with.”

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