Julius is the 6th pony I have fostered for Here4horses – he came with his pal Noggin the Nog and they quickly settled into life with me and the two other geldings that lived here at the time.

Julius and Noggin the Nog

After having liveries for years I got a bit fed up with having people around…. but my older horse needed company, so fostering was the perfect solution.

During the first winter, Julius was a bit clumsy and would tread on you if you weren’t careful to show him where he needed to be.

I got some steel toecap boots and gradually sorted the problem out with clear voice commands and pressure/release, asking him to step over or back.

Then, in the second year, he developed a lump below his left eye – diagnosed as a sarcoid.  The Here4horses Vet Nicola decided it needed treating and I was supplied with specialist cream and advice on how and when to apply etc.

I think this was the beginning of our special bond, as despite this treatment being quite painful, Julius allowed me to apply the cream even when the area became sore and inflamed.

I felt he trusted me and somehow knew I was doing my best for him.

Thankfully, after a repeat period of treatment, the nasty lump totally disappeared – hooray!

The Covid lockdown meant Julius and his pal stayed a bit longer than they would have normally, he had matured bigger than we originally thought and I began to think that maybe Julius and I could make a ridden team.

I discussed this with Wendy and explained that I had an experienced and trusted friend who could start him under saddle. The Trustees were very happy for us to go ahead and so his ridden education began in the skilled hands of Wendy Ellis.

Julius, Long-reining

Julius was very straightforward and sensible throughout his training. We had just one rather exciting episode when he met a gang of black and white calves that were newly turned out!

In every other way he is proving to be a really lovely chap with a very sensible head on his substantial shoulders.

Julius and Finn relaxing

One of his favourite things to do is hacking out; always with his ears pricked on the way, enjoying seeing the world.

He also adores water – always passing through the middle of deep puddles with great enthusiasm!

Recently he went into a stream and enjoyed splashing about and feeling the water on his legs.

A trip to the seaside is the next thing on our list of fun things to do.

Julius will now live with me indefinitely having transferred onto the Loanie Pony Scheme with me and it’s great to have that the Here4horses team there in the background, keeping an eye on us both – that’s definitely a good thing!

Julius, Noggin and Finn

Obviously he is still learning about the world; I’m having lessons on him to keep us both on track but I love him to bits and I’m confident that he trusts me.

Julius turning out to be a keeper was an unexpected bonus.

I have loved fostering all the ponies over the years and have learned so much from caring for them.

If you can offer a foster home; then just make an application! There are still so many horses and ponies needing people to put the time in and help secure their future.

Pam and Julius