We don’t know what happened to Nikita before she came to us — horses don’t always arrive with a full story of their abuse and neglect. But back in 2011, we welcomed Nikita knowing she’d been labeled dangerous and untouchable. Someone even claimed she was “a killer.”
For a long time, she maintained her distance. She came close in the mornings when feed pellets were laid out but made it clear she wanted the humans to stay away. Eventually, she joined her herd mates in a paddock close to where we were working with other horses. After watching us for a few days, Nikita decided to join our training games and we welcomed her in.
There are horses who never want to carry a rider, and Nikita is one of them. That’s okay with us. She accepted basic care training and now stands for the farrier and dentist, and doesn’t object when it’s time for vaccines or deworming. We suspect that’s as far as she’ll go — she still prefers the company of other horses. From time to time, however, she approaches one of our Miracle Workers when they’re working in her pasture. It turns out she’s very fond of a little scratch on the cheek.