Echo River Ranch

The Artful Dodger

This horse will soon be one of the ranch favorites. He comes to the ranch after being run through local auction and ending up in the "unwanted" pen.

Statistics - A Description of Dodger

The Artful Dodger The Artful Dodger goes by the barn name "Dodger". He is a registered Tennesee Walking Horse gelding that was born in 1999 and he can really gait (walk fast) when he wants too. He stands about 15-2 hands (or 62 inches) tall.

Horse Statistics At A Glance Dodgers main body color is black with random old age white hairs. His mane and tail are also black. He has a fading white star on his forehead and a short stripe coming out of the white snip on his nose. He also has short white socks on both the front and back right legs. At some point in his life he was branded on his left rump cheek; first with the numbers 725 and above that with a symbol similar to the outline of a bell. Perhaps someday ` we will make the time to search the internet for more information on them.



The Beginning - How We Obtained Dodger

Dodger always ready to walk away We found Dodger in February 2014. A horse rescue group was trying to save him from the "unwanted" pen of the local livestock auction barn. A few people had posted comments that they knew him to be a kind and rideable horse, but our attempts to learn more went unanswered. We took a chance and bought him over the phone using our credit card.

When we arrived to pick him up, Dodger looked very sound and healthy. But he was very difficult to catch in the small pen. He dodged behind other horses in the pen; thus the name The Artful Dodger. It took us almost an hour to get him cornered alone and only then did he easily slip his nose into the halter.



Horse Tails - Funny Things & Stories About Dodger

Dodger wanting to be friendly Dodger soon took over leadership of the herd. And grazing in the neighbors front yard one evening, he decided to take the herd for a run down the main roadway. Out of sight, all we could hear were hooves at a run on pavement.

We didn't know which way the herd was running, left or right on the main road. We jumped into the truck and hurried to look down both directions, the herd was no where in sight and there was no evidence (poop) to give us hints as to their direction. The sheriff was notified and we continued to search. After several hours, they were reported safely in a fenced yard about two miles away.

The finding deputy was very upset that Dodger had threatened to run him over several times in his attempts to keep the herd from being captured. We were just happy to get everyone home safely. And we learned our lesson to keep Dodger securely penned up when the other horses are loose.



The Present - What We Think About Dodger

Dodger always looking over his shoulder Dodger has had substantial training. He both neck reins and accepts direction through leg and body cues. It is hard for us to fathom him as "unwanted" by anyone, let alone by an owner who actually knew him.

He continues to be wary when we try and catch him, but our gentle approach makes him give up much sooner than he used to. He remains wary in other ways to, constantly watching while he is tied. And a relentless caution during the trail rides. Admittedly this is our first ownership of a Tennessee Walking Horse (TWH) and we are not sure if this is just his personality or a breed trait (as Riddle, also a TWH, has a similar cautious demeanor).