His lips wrap around the grass, and he raises his head at an angle. The tender shoots rip and snap from their roots. His muscles ripple beneath the skin, and he strains for the last few nibbles.
His nose won’t reach.
He readjusts himself, preparing for the battle to come.
I hold steady. This is a fight he cannot win.
Zeus is allowed a certain length of rope as I graze him in the back yard. He isn’t allowed to step out of our “bubble.”
The Alpha horse in each herd decides when to stop and eat, when to move on, and when to drink. The Alpha is In Charge. He’s a kind, benevolent leader–but in the end, is also a dictator.
Zeus needs to learn that he is not the Alpha of any human.
He pulls and yanks and nods his head in irritation. I stand firm.
He sighs, snorts, and shakes his head. I smile. He sniffs the desired greenery, but steps back. His nose wiggles as he munches on the tuft near his feet.
I step forward one step. He lifts his head, a question in his eyes.
“Go ahead, buddy. You earned it.” I scratch behind his ears, and he lifts his head. He arches his neck, begging for me to find his itchiest spot. I oblige. Grey hair trickles through my fingers as his spring coat sheds from my touch.
“C’mon. I’ll groom you. It’ll be nice,” I say.
We mosey back to the barn through the now-forgotten grass.