Wild Wisdom

It is a stirring sight to watch a band of wild horses on the run across a prairie or valley floor, manes and tails flowing in the wind. If they are in rugged country, they won’t slow their pace when the trail winds its way up a

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It is a stirring sight to watch a band of wild horses on the run across a prairie or valley floor, manes and tails flowing in the wind. If they are in rugged country, they won’t slow their pace when the trail winds its way up a bluff. Sure-footed, they will scramble to the top and pause, etched against the skyline, nostrils flared, ears up, keen eyes focusing on what had startled them.







Les Sellnow


The Arabian stallion bringing up the rear was donated to the band in the North Dakota Badlands by the author.


To the observer, they are a true symbol of freedom. However, the horses themselves sometimes pay a high price for this freedom. Forage can be scarce in their habitat, and they must endure a scorching sun in the summer and brutal storms in the winter, while many of their domestic counterparts rest comfortably in box stalls on cushiony straw or shavings, awaiting the next meal from a caring owner. In some areas, there is a serious threat to survival from mountain lions, while in others, humans in cars pose a danger. Then, there is the matter of injury. Damage to a foot or leg that is quickly cared for and of no consequence in a domestic setting could bring with it a death sentence to the horse in the wild

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Les Sellnow was a prolific freelance writer based near Riverton, Wyoming. He specialized in articles on equine research, and operated a ranch where he raised horses and livestock. He authored several fiction and nonfiction books, including Understanding Equine Lameness and Understanding The Young Horse. He died in 2023.

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