What do you do when your horse has a vet appointment, but you don’t have a trailer or lorry to transport them in?

Well, Hack 1,000 Miles challenger Jesse Lowry-Phillips shared her solution – and that was to add a few more miles to her total by hacking Irish cob Bette to the vets.

Jesse and Bette

“After I’d owned Bette for about six months, she started gaining weight, had prominent milk veins and udders, and kept pushing me towards her backend like she wanted me to feed from her,” says Jesse, who was concerned that her mare could be pregnant. “The vets suggested doing a full check up at the practise, in case she needed to be sedated.”

After consulting with the vets, who cleared her to continue riding the mare, Jesse booked the appointment and hacked to the practise.

“I rode her there, she had a full check and she’s not pregnant – just a fat cob!” says Jesse, 57. “Fortunately she didn’t have to be sedated so I rode her home afterwards, but the vets had agreed to keep her there for a few hours had she needed to be sedated so I could hack her back.”

Jesse explains that having grown up in America before moving to Ireland with her husband in 2019, cobs are a new breed to her.

“My husband surprised me with her for Christmas in 2021. She’s wonderful and a lot of fun,” says Jesse of her 16-year-old mare. “We don’t have many places to ride so go into the town or to the marina. People recognise her now and I carry mints so that kids can feed her. She’s like a bit of a celebrity.”

Jesse decided to sign up for the challenge after picking up a copy of Your Horse at the airport.

“I was reading it on the plane, and when I saw the challenge I thought I’d like to see if I could do it,” says Jesse. “It’s good motivation and to feel like a part of something.

“It’s nice to share pictures and stories in the Facebook group and connect with people, even if it’s remotely.”

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