It isn't often that a relationship with a large equine comes along that is 'once in a lifetime'. I think I was very lucky to have Badger find me so many years ago. He was a big lanky ugly and gangly barely 3 year old mule that was too tall for me...and an unlikely match for me.
Somewhere in that first 3 months that we were together, he became an equine like no other I'd ever experienced.
The two of us became inseperable. After riding and working with him for a year, it seemed that he could understand my very thoughts and intentions.
And Badger as always, is very gentle.
He loves children. He is fine with adults as long as they don't ride him. [I wonder if he thought I was a child all these years because I'm so small???]
I've had Badger since 1997. In 2009 he became sick with Equine COPD. I've been doing periodic updates on him since then.
This weekend the grand kids visited and since they have grown up with Badger as their buddy, we got Badger out and dressed him up. My grand daughter thought he would look pretty with ribbons and a necklace of beads. We took photos [thank you Stephanie for doing so] knowing that this would be the last time that the kids saw Badger alive.
Badger has had life fade from his eyes. He struggles daily just to stand and breathe. He has let me know that it is time to move on across the Rainbow Bridge to the Merry Meadow. One thing I do know about that, I am sad, but know that he will meet up with his once favorite dog, Xena and Cheyanne who eagerly await him on the other side.
Badger has given delight for more people than you can shake a stick at.
I leave this post with the simple words that Ariel uttered as she gave him a hug.
"I love you Badger"