Absorbine® is proud to be the fly control sponsor of the Kentucky Horse Park (KHP). In this Absorbine® Spotlight, we meet Brook, a 25-year-old American Mustang who is one of the KHPs longest members in residence and who has helped over 1,000 people learn to ride and to appreciate and love horses.
Did you know that the Kentucky Horse Park offers horseback riding lessons, as well as youth horse camps?! If you were to sign up for lessons, you might end up riding Brook, a 25-year-old American Mustang gelding who has lived at the Kentucky Horse Park since 1994. Brook was one of 24 bay Mustang geldings gifted to the Kentucky Horse Park by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in 1994 to begin the “Mustang Troop.” The Mustang Troop was designed to partner inner city children with horses for a summer-long program to not only learn how to care for horses and ride, but also to teach respect, dedication and responsibility. The 24 geldings had previously been handled in a BLM holding facility, but none of them were originally trained under saddle. Many of the original geldings have passed away or been adopted into retirement homes, however Brook is still enjoying his job as a senior citizen of the Horse Park.
What is Brook’s daily routine like? Brook is considered semi-retired at this point in his life. Like many Mustangs, he prefers to live outdoors in a herd setting rather than in a stall or barn. For the most part, Brook enjoys a luxury retirement lifestyle at the Kentucky Horse Park, residing in a green pasture with his pasture mates. Since he has been around the longest it is his job to “educate” the newbies and show them the ropes on a daily basis. He is typically called into service when we have a person coming to take a lesson at the Kentucky Horse Park that has no horse experience, or exhibits a fear of horses. Brook has seen all types of riders, so he knows how to take care of those who may need his help. He enjoys giving lessons on Sundays and occasionally serving as a mount for summer camps.
What is Brook’s favorite treat? Peppermints
What is Brook’s favorite Absorbine® product? Brook is partial to his Absorbine® UltraShield® fly mask. At his age, he doesn’t have the patience to be bothered by flies. He also likes to hear staff members explain what a fly mask is to visitors when they ask why he is wearing a blindfold. Brook also likes his The Missing Link® Well Blend® Senior Supplement. He knows he has special needs as a senior, and The Missing Link® helps to keep him fit and healthy so he can continue teaching new equine enthusiasts how to ride.
Who is Brook’s best horse friend? His best friend is Cochise, also a 25-year-old bay Mustang.
How long has Brook lived at the Kentucky Horse Park? 23 years Fun Fact: Although staff lost count many years ago, it is believed Brook has literally taught at least 1,000 people to ride, or given them their first introduction to horses. He may not have lots of shiny trophies, but very few horses can boast that accomplishment.
Brook’s handler is Amanda Reardon, who has been riding and working with horses for over 20 years. She started her riding career as a pony clubber and advanced over the years, competing on high school and college level teams, as well as training and working with a number of professionals in the equestrian field. At age 18, Amanda became a certified horseback riding instructor though the Certified Horseman’s Association (CHA), completing the course as one of the youngest participants. In May of 2015 Amanda completed her education by earning a bachelor’s degree in Equine Science and Management and a minor in Agriculture Economics from the University of Kentucky. Once graduated, Amanda came to the Kentucky Horse Park to continue to pursue her love for teaching and horses where she now manages the Equine Education Department. To learn more about riding lessons at the Kentucky Horse Park, visit their website.