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Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Horses .. .. .. Mustang .. .. famous owners !!


Other than my self-professed love for elephants, there were couple of animals that formed the trio in Thiruvallikkeni Perumal purappadu – a beautiful white horse and majestic Ox.  There were rumours that ‘the white horse’ was once a racing pedigree and was later retired and presented to Temple ! – now there is none !!

Horse  is one of two extant subspecies of Equus ferus. It is an odd-toed ungulate mammal belonging to the taxonomic family Equidae. Humans domesticated horses and needed them to perform a variety of duties.  There is an extensive, specialized vocabulary used to describe equine-related concepts, covering everything from anatomy to life stages, size, colors, markings, breeds, locomotion, and behavior. One type of horse-powered work was the hauling of heavy loads, plowing fields, and other tasks that required pulling ability. 

Mustang Caves or Sky Caves of Nepal are a collection of some 10,000 man-made caves dug into the sides of valleys in the Mustang District of Nepal. Maharajadhiraja Prithivi Narayan Shah (1723–1775) was the last ruler of the Gorkha Kingdom and first monarch of Kingdom of Nepal, also called Kingdom of Gorkha.  Prithvi Narayan Shah is credited for starting the campaign for the unification of Nepal. He proclaimed his kingdom  as Asal Hindustan ("Real Land of Hindus") due to North India being ruled by the Islamic Mughal rulers.  He followed Hindu social code Dharmaśāstra.  His rule extended over Mustang District  is in Dhawalagiri Zone of northern Nepal.  The district, with Jomsom as its headquarters, covers an area of 3,573 km²  and is the gateway of our holy Salagrammam (Mukthinath divyadesam)

This is no divine post but one on horses -  Mustang horses are descendants of escaped, domestic Spanish horses that were brought to the Americas by Spanish explorers in the 16th century. The name is derived from the Spanish words "mestengo" and "mostrenco" — meaning "wild or masterless cattle," according to the Oxford Learner's Dictionaries.  Mustangs are not technically wild horses because they came from a domesticated population, and so the mustangs living in the wild are considered feral, according to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH). They can be found roaming free across the western United States but are also kept by humans in captivity and ridden like other horses. Mustangs have muscular bodies and hard hooves, which makes them suitable for scouting and trail riding, according to Horse Canada, a government-run equine website.

Mustangs, which like other horses, are typically measured in hands,  stand 14 to 15 hands tall. This measurement equals 56 inches to 60 inches (140 to 150 centimeters). They weigh around 800 pounds (360 kilograms), according to the America's Mustang program. Mustangs can be a wide variety of different colors and, according to Oklahoma State University, their coats show the entire range of colors found in all horses. Usually, they are bay, which is a reddish-brown, or sorrel, which is a chestnut color. They can also have a variety of patches, spots and stripes. Most mustang horses can run, or gallop, at speeds of 25 to 30 mph (40 to 48 km/h), although a mustang has been recorded reaching 55 mph (88 km/h) over a short distance, according to Horse Canada. 

We are reading about horses because couple of very famous people now own them ! .. ..  thala MS Dhoni, whose love for big dogs is well known, added to his list of pets when he bought a black stallion soon after arriving at his seven-acre farmhouse on the outskirts of Ranchi. The Chennai Super Kings skipper flew in from Delhi where he was leading his franchise before the tournament was potsponed due to Covid-19 cases in the bio-bubble. Dhoni's wife, Sakshi posted a video of the horse on her Instagram account and captioned it, "Welcome home Chetak! A true gentleman! Happily accepted in our pack!" Dhoni already has a Belgian Malinois, a white husky and a German Shepherd.

Dhoni is the second cricketer after CSK team-mate Ravindra Jadeja to keep a horse as pet. Soon after reaching home from Delhi, allrounder Jadeja too had posted pictures of his three horses on twitter, captioning it "Back to the place where I feel safe."

Interesting ! 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
11th May 2021.

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