Handmade & Vintage Treasures

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Precious Pet: Brightman the Leopard Appaloosa

As you know I love my animals and they are a lot of inspiration behind my crafts. So, I am going to do a series called "My Precious Pet", each telling the story of each pet. I hope you come to love these guys as much as I do...
      JB's Brightman
This weeks pet has a special history with me and my husband (Terry), so to get his story started I have to start with me and my husband. My love (obsession) started with horse when I was 10 years old and my oldest sister had taught me how to ride. I would beg my parents for a horse but they never caved in to my want of a 1200lb. companion. When I was older, I decided I would purchase a horse myself, this is where I met my current husband. He was a horse trader, having around 50 horse to choose from. I purchased a beautiful, gentle horse from him. We soon became friends, our families going on long rides in the mountains. I have to add at this time we were both married to different people, we didn't marry for many years later. With us being friends, I always go the heads-up on any horse that he would decide to sell. His son decided he wanted sell his mare because he was riding another horse more. She was a beautiful leopard Appaloosa, light grey with large black spots. Although I love the basic black and brown horses, the unusual always appeals to me more. Her name was Babe and she was a large, very muscular horse. I called her my barrel horse because it was like sitting on a barrel. When I purchase her she was bred. Babe is the mother our Brightman.
     Just a few hours old.
I was leasing some pasture not far from my house and my family helped me build a small two stall barn, with the up-coming foal in mind. When we built the stalls we left about 12 inches from the ground to the last board (big mistake). I came to feed and do stall duty, when I noticed Babe was pacing back and forth and she had a raw spot on her neck from rubbing her neck across the top board. I thought maybe she was in labor, until I noticed she was a lot thinner than yesterday. She also had a nice swollen bag of milk. What happen to the foal? When Babe had laid down to give birth her bottom was right next to the 12 inch space, so the foal was born on the outside of the stall. I was scared that coyotes or something else had taken the foal so we searched for about 30 minutes, when we found the little guy up in the woods nosing around some bushes.
     Goob is leading us.
He was the cutest thing I ever saw being white with chestnut spots all over...definitely the foal of my dreams. I'm not sure who was happier, Babe, the foal, or me, when he was put back with him mom. I was content to just sit and watch them, but I also couldn't wait to call Terry and tell him about the foal he missed out on. This was way before cell phones, so on the drive home, I was thinking of what I would say. He had told me that Babe had had a couple of other foals, all being just solid in color, so I knew I had a special foal. When Terry came to see him, he tried to purchase and trade for him, we no luck on his end. 

     He has been in a burr bush. I believe I have my work cut out for me.
Some time later, because of financial difficulties caused by my divorce, I was forced to sell all my beloved horses. Who better to sell them to than to someone I know will take good care of them. The day Terry came with his trailer to load up all my precious horses, was a day I don't ever want to live again. Let's get off this sad note and fast forward 3 years. 

     Brightman at 5 months old. Notice my dad's horse in the background.
Being a single mom, I had to work hard to support my son and myself, so I didn't have a lot of time for anything, much less riding. But after a few years, I was on a more stable ground, so I decided to bring a horse back into my life. Of course I contacted Terry to see what he had for sale. We hadn't spoke in a few years and I didn't know he was divorced, this is where I story begins. But this story is not about my awesome hubby, but about one of our precious pets.

     Here comes the boys.
Terry still had Brightman and was using him a stud horse, producing beautiful spotted foals. Brightman not only passes his beautiful coat to his off-spring but also his easy-going, gentle disposition. If you know anything about Appaloosas, you know that they usually have very thin and short manes and tails, but Brightman has the most thick, luscious mane and tail I have ever seen. He is a large, big-boned horse with a big backside like a Quarter horse.
     Treats from Aaron
Brightman has never been trained by a professional. We have trained him ourselves. He has such a gentle disposition, he has never acted out by rearing or bucking. Once he knows what you are asking him, his is always willing to do it. He was gelded around 12 years old and has been used as a trail horse. 
     He has a full mane and tail uncharacteristic for an Appaloosa.
This spring, we celebrated his 20th birthday. He spends his days grazing in our pasture with his buddy, Poncho, our other leopard Appaloosa. I don't ride like I use to because of a back injury, but they enjoy being groomed and daily treats. Although I don't ride much, both our boys will live their life out here on King Farm. 
     I'm riding Babes, Brightman's mom, in a parade. Gotta love that 80's hair.


  1. Brightman is beautiful! Thank you for sharing, I enjoyed seeing the pics and reading all about your horse, hubby and family! :)


  2. Thank you Trina. I so enjoy writing about my animals.

  3. Beautiful markings on Brightman. I have never seen a Leopard Appaloosa. Wonderful story.

  4. I had an appaloosa long ago as teen. Jamoche..very gentle as you describe and a great pal. How wonderful for both of you that Brightman gets to live out his days being loved and cared for. Not all horse (dogs, cats etc.) are so fortunate!

  5. What a wonderful story! I'm so happy that everything worked out for you the way it did. Your horses are beautiful. You are blessed!

  6. Thanks for sharing a wonderful story. Things always happen for a reason even though you don't know that reason when some of those terrible things are happening. Blessings to you!

  7. Thanks everyone. We are kinda partial to the spotted horses.

    It is amazing how things happen for a reason.

  8. like a jigsaw puzzle: all the pieces fit! truly awesome.


Thank you for reading my post. I enjoy hearing your thoughts. Tisha