As a single parent of two small children, 4 year old twins, I had been struggling to find a safe way to introduce my children to the joys of riding. I had purchased matched Shelton mares and found that it was very difficult, and at time a bit unsafe, to have the kids, who knew absolutely nothing about riding, each on their own horse. I got to the point where I could manage pretty well if I led them from the ground, but never got to the point where I felt totally safe “ponying” them from my horse.
I finally decided I needed to do some “horse trading” and found Skittles on Christine Wakefield’s website. I called Christine and talked with her about my specific needs and thoughts, i.e., to sell one of my full-size horses and down-size to Skittles, a small ~13 hands mare, with the intentions of having my children ride double. Christine and I talked several times about what I was looking for, what I needed and what I planned to do. She ensured me that Skittles was a very well-behaved horse and she felt she would do great with my children. I ultimately purchased Skittles, based on just my phone conversations with Christine, and traveled down to Rouge River to drop off my full-size horse and pick up Skittles.
I am very happy to say that Skittles has turned out to be everything that Christine described, and MORE. My kids started out leading her (since they are so small, I put carrots in their pockets for Skittles to follow) to give them confidence and develop trust with her. They have now transitioned to riding double and it is a true joy to see them enthusiastic and excited to go riding. My son was terribly afraid of riding the ponies, and he has completely fallen in love with and totally trusts Skittles. We are planning our first trip to the mountains for later this summer, and I am certain that Skittles will be the rock-solid performer she has shown herself to be.
Finding the right horse can be a very difficult endeavor and is filled with a tremendous amount of uncertainty, apprehension, and potentially, misinformation and mistrust. I can honestly say that Christine Wakefield removed all of these issues and assisted me in getting the perfect horse for my children. I could not be happier. I have already talked to her about keeping an eye out for another “Skittles” as my kids will be moving to separate horses within the next two years.
Thank you Christine. I sincerely appreciate what you did for me and my children.