Tristan was a wild horse for four years in central Nevada. I wrote a little bit about where he came from here: the Callaghan Herd Management Area.
After that, he was in BLM custody for two years. After that, he was in an adoptive home for two years. Then he was relocated to the rescue for two years. Then he came to me.
At some point prior to coming to me, he acquired a really scary scar.
His roan coloring means that scars show up as darker spots against his coat. See just above his hock? That dark line along the tendon?
The picture doesn’t show it very well, but it’s actually a semi-circle, There’s a matching one on the other side. Those are teeth marks.
Have you ever seen a horse – a boss mare, usually – herd other horses, head snaked down low, teeth bared? It’s the equine body language equivalent of MOVE RIGHT THE FUCK NOW.
My best guess is that at some point Tristan did not move fast enough, and another horse bit him, just above the hock, on either side of that tendon. Badly enough to go through the skin, and then heal so that it left a pretty big scar.
He has never – knock wood – been lame on that leg, so it obviously healed. But can you imagine the perfect series of circumstances that had to occur so that an injury that gnarly healed without any lasting damage – in the wild?