A wealthy woman I used to ride for had a pair of oxen. I think the colonists just didn’t have many horses, access to them – and certainly not a variety of breeds. An ox is a big, ungainly creature, generally slow moving – but they can run for short burts but they look so silly. Basically, once castrated I think something is just triggered with their hormones and they …well just wanna eat. And, they get bigger and fatter. End up pretty useless. All things considered don’t you wonder how the Colonists ever survived. No wonder they died young.
I ended up with the mule, who is a huge 18 plus hands (my biggest horse in the photos is 16.2 hands from a friend who filed for divorce and made big life changes. Looks like a big draft horse (mother was a Shire) with big ears. She could outwork an ox I’ve no doubt and is much calmer/unflappable – yet quick and oh so agile – then a horse. And, I can ride her.
One of the reasons I also am training them all to come to me, and come full on quick – is because I know they will be valuable and become a target for thieves. Modern day ‘rustlers’. It already happens occasionally around here – more frequently with the cattle because they are easier to hide and sell. Many horses of any value are micro-chipped now – not the cattle. But a well-trained horse is going to become a highly desired animal in the future I suspect. Heck, even as it is now, to find a versatile, well trained horse costs no small amount of money. Probably have about 38k or more in horse flesh decorating the pastures at the moment. Thankfully I bred/trained 3 of them. Been wondering and talking to friends when I think about it if I could try training them to avoid a human when not under saddle (ecept me or someone able to provide them some positive ‘ok’ signal/sound) ‘Course, if the human knew how to throw a lasso with any accuracy the point would be moot.
Would love to own a Clydesdale or Percheron someday. Love the big, chunky guys! Anyway, late. Just…think about going on a trail ride, getting on a horse or getting to know any horse people if you can.