|Abrazos Adventure Portales New Mexico
offering family and individual recreation to Portales, Clovis, Cannon AFB and the surrounding area with horseback
riding and lessons
Wendy Toombs owner/instructor 575.760.4444
Butch is what we call a ‘grade’ horse. This means we don’t know exactly what breed he is and
he has no registration papers. That, however, doesn't determine whether or not he is a good
All we can do is guess at his age and we think, coming into year 2015 that he will be 22 years
His pattern of color and white is referred to as Tobiano Paint. The color is considered sorrel. He
is what we refer to as a gelding.
A friend bought him for someone she knew who was hunting for a riding horse. After the
purchase her friend decided she wasn’t interested in buying him. My friend didn’t ride him so he
stood around for about a year just eating and doing nothing.
She asked if I could use him and she would pay his expenses. She would still own him under
this arrangement and, of course, could come get him any time. I decided to try and see if it
would work. This happened the first of April 2012.
From what he told me about himself, it seemed that he had been ‘cowboyed’ in his past life. We
started the school with a horse like that and he turned out to be a solid school horse.
By ‘cowboyed’ I mean that he was probably expected to do what was asked of him without a lot
of education that we like to put into the horse in this day and time. He would jump when a
person simply raised a hand suddenly, either on the ground or on top of him. He was quite
jumpy and seemed to expect the human to sort of disrespect him.
When you rode him you needed to keep your body very quiet or he would take off and it took a
bit to bring him back down to the gait he left and calm down.
Experienced students rode him from the beginning and it became part of their lesson to help
him understand what we wanted from a horse.
He had been here about a month when his owner took him home overnight because she was
having visitors and wanted him for riding. He had just begun to understand what we wanted
here before he left.
Her way of doing things with a horse and my way were very different and when he returned 24
hours later it was like starting all over for us. I told her then, if she took him again he wouldn’t
The next 3 months he was with us my friend’s situation changed and she no longer was able to
pay his expenses. He was working enough to pay for himself so he continued living here.
At the end of August she took him again and had some long term plans for him. I sent him off
and didn’t give it another thought. After about 3 weeks, early September 2012, she contacted
me to see if I wanted him – she wanted to give him to me.
At the time we talked, no one at her place had ridden him this trip home.
He had come a long way by this trip back to her and I thought it wouldn’t take too long
(hopefully) to remind him of his progress so I said yes and he became ours.
I did have to laugh because before he came home she had a friend ride him. This time though
it didn’t make as much difference as it did with the first trip.
I continued putting experienced riders on him and he continued to make progress with trusting
the humans in his space.
The first summer I could not put children on him. The second summer he was much more
settled and I began to put the more experienced smaller riders on him. It took a little getting
used to but he handled the difference in rider weight and their feel on his back.
By summer number three, 2014, I was able to put beginner riders safely on him, both children
and adults. He has settled in very nicely and is a horse for either beginning or more
experienced riders. It has been fun to watch him get comfortable with the crazy human
population and even indulge in communication with different ones.