As in horses that is, “Finley”, resides with us on the farm. She’s probably the only mare my husband has liked or ever will. It’s his cowboy point of view. Finley came to us in the spring of 2016, I was looking for a nice gentle horse for our first granddaughter to learn all the fundamentals of owning and riding a horse. Finley is a Haflinger, the Haflinger breed also known as the Avelignese, is a breed of horse developed in Austria and northern Italy during the late nineteenth century. The breed is known for their safe, versatile, and dependable character which made Finley a great choice for the farm.
We were lucky to find Fin just 25 miles from us, her owner living in Phoenix Oregon brought her to a trainer to get a driving tune up, Finley has been trained to pull a cart, as most Haflingers are trained to both ride and drive. Finley is characteristic to the breed (from the draft genetics) standing at 14.2 she is a pretty stout girl, heavier boned , feathered feet with a white double mane, she is very eye catching as the breed seems to be.
Finley originated from Ohio, eventually ending up in California where the lady we got her from purchased her, this is where two of my blog stories connect. If you’ve read my post Horse of Different Color under Farm Tales this will all come together. Yes Finley once resided at the same horse farm that has an association with the trainer that I got my buckskin horse from, needless to say myself and the lady I purchased Finley from have the same opinion regarding the breeder and trainer.
Haflinger’s are harder to find on the west coast, plentiful on the east coast simply because they are still used regularly for carting, and farming. They make beautiful carting horses with their flowing mane and tail and their coats of reddish sorrel, to a rich palomino color.
I wish I would have discovered this breed earlier in my horse loving life, for I find myself when I ride I no longer want to be riding something that boogers or jumps up and down when they get the notion or itch to do so. As my husband would say I’m a fair weather rider, as we all seem to be as we age but don’t want to give up our addictions.
The breed seems to have two shortcomings, their food intake has to be managed, they’re a breed that can easily founder do to over feeding where it be pasture, grain or hay. They also can be stubborn at times, once they discover it isn’t going to get them anywhere you pretty much have the perfect horse.
I’m looking for a second Haflinger which will take me some time to locate the best fit for the farm, I have another granddaughter soon to be at that age learning about what every little girl dreams of “Horses”. Haflingers very simply become part of the family, not much else I can say about our Finley, our granddaughter’s first horse that has captured her heart.
As my husband has said, He would love to see our granddaughter with her bright blue eyes, blonde hair flowing, galloping Finley across the back pasture with her flowing white mane and tail, it’s what this little girl dreams of.