More than a Little help
July 4, 2011
My name is Cheyenne Little and I am 14 years old. For as long as I can remember I have been in love with horses; they’re my passion.
Last year I was given a National Champion Arabian halter horse named China for my birthday, along with a 2-year-old Arabian filly.
When I first got her, I hated her. I only took her because she was free. I had reason to hate her. She bit, bolted, kicked, and was simply vicious. I couldn’t catch her in the pasture and she wasn’t trained to be ridden. So I ignored her and focused my time on the filly.
Two months later, my filly was put down due to a shattered leg from jumping a fence. Devastated, I started to look at China in a new way. I saw hope and beauty. But mostly inspiration for life.
China broke her leg before I got her, while she was in Canada. It took more than $30,000 to save her, but she lived. When she was taken off her medication she got very sick, an auto immune disease was soon discovered and she was declared unbreedable. The little mare still fought though and she lived in spite of a previous broken leg, auto immune disease, and a skin condition called pemphigus.
Months after I started working with her, the horse I had once hated with all my heart I had grown to love and trust. She was the horse I had waited my whole life for. After many more months, we formed an amazing bond that seemed to never quit developing. She began taking care of me and I soon rode her for the first time.
After just a few rides I could go bareback through our woods without even a bridle, an amazing accomplishment. China learned tricks and really loved me. I trusted her and took care of her, in return she trusted me.
I had always been told to never trust a horse. That all changed after China.
On June 26, just 20 days after our one-year anniversary, we went to our first halter show together. We earned three first places, two trophies, a picture frame, high-point nominated, a fifth place, and reserve champion.
China also started coming off her medication for over two months at a time, a true miracle – or at least it’s a miracle to me. This gave me the opportunity to breed her and learning about embryo transfers and auto immune issues led me to my dream career.
China inspired me to do my best in school. Now I hope to attend UC Davis and become a large animal veterinarian, specializing in equine reproduction within the thoroughbred racing industry. Next year I will only be a freshman and will begin college classes. The following year I will begin working as a vet assistant.
China also inspired me to give to the less fortunate because I realized how lucky she is to be alive. She once fought for her life in the same way that people all over the world fight for theirs.
In my free time, I work at Horses For Healing with disabled children. To give back more this year I plan on donating 50 percent of all my profits from my hog at the Nevada County Fair 4H auction to local children’s hospitals. I really enjoy giving to the less fortunate. China reminds me to be thankful for all the little things in life, even life itself.
I am currently looking for horse show sponsors because I was recently given the opportunity to take China’s latest filly to national and regional level shows. It is my dream and my goal. China is my life. She’s perfect and amazing. I waited my whole life for this horse and now I have it. Please look for my upcoming book, A Horse With A Purpose, about our amazing story. We were meant to be together.
And if you don’t believe in fate, read our book, then we’ll talk.
Cheyenne Little is homeschooled with Union Hill Charter School and lives in Grass Valley.