Now, about my mare, Ami. We've had her since she was a yearling, and she's now 18. She wasn't moody until she had a miserable bout with what my vet finally diagnosed as Lyme Disease when she was about 8. She had become extremely defensive about being touched. In fact, if you didn't stop when she told you to, she could become agressive to the point of actually being dangerous. As it turns out, this is a common sign of Lyme in horses, and it can remain as a permanent after effect.
This is apparently what happened to Ami. She's nothing like what she was when she had active disease, but she's certainly not like she was before either. She still doesn't like to be touched. Sometimes I can groom her reasonably well by starting slowly and staying away from the places she especially wants left alone.
Ami was never as much of a "people" horse as Indy, and now she'd really prefer for Mike and I to just leave her alone as far as "fiddling" with her goes. She doesn't seem to worry about me, but she is downright hostile to poor Mike, and he does NOT touch her if he can help it, believe me.
When she and Indy are eating hay at the outside feeder, all Mike has to do is walk by and she'll pin her ears and swing her head at him. Sometimes she will take a step toward him, and sometimes more than that.That's why he never goes into the paddock without a manure fork. Ami is smart, and she won't even try anything if he's "armed."
That's what happened on the day in question. The horses were eating on opposite sides of the hay feeder when Mike walked by. Ami pinned her ears and swung her head at him. Then she took a step toward him, and then another.
Mike said he didn't have time to react to Ami before Indy whipped around the end of the feeder to cut Ami off, ears flat and head snaked out at her. Mike said he'd never seen Indy look like that. Ami too realized that, for once, Indy meant business and jumped back instead of all but ignoring him like she usually does. Indy was protecting Mike - there's just no other way to look at it. Mike himself is absolutely sure about Indy's intentions, and he was the one that was there after all.
All I can say is, we knew Indy was a hero. Now he's proved it in no uncertain terms. Whatta guy!