Horses are not predators; they are prey animals. Their instinctive response to danger is to run, which is why they have such long legs. However, when cornered or desperate, they will fight. This is what Sally was prepared to do now. She was desperate. Her mind filled with images of an earlier encounter with coyotes. Images that were extremely painful. Once before, she had faced a pack of coyotes. They had taken her colt from her. She would not let that happen again. The images drove her forward in desperation.
Swirling around her like wind whipped sage brush.
So focused were they on their approach to their wounded prey, the coyotes didn’t even realize Sally was coming until she was upon them. The first coyote Sally reached was the smallest of the pack and no contest for Sally’s strong teeth and jaws. She headed in a beeline for the wild dog and reached her side in a matter of just a few long, powerful strides. She arched her neck, lowered her head and clamped her teeth around the coyote’s neck. She lifted it high in the air and threw it down to the ground like a dirty old rag. Oblivious to the yelps of pain coming from her quarry, she reared up on her hind legs and rammed her sharp front hooves into the animal’s ribs. It yelped no more.
The other three coyotes stopped their advance and turned, the coarse hairs rising on their backs. As if working in concert, they curled their lips, growled and slunk low to the ground. The largest of the pack walked stealthily straight forward, growling softly. The other two split apart and moved to either side of the approaching horse, their new enemy an enemy that needed to be dealt with before they could have the feast they were craving.
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