A foal proved that she had all the makings of the majestic Black Beauty when she emerged into this big old world. Under the loving care of her doting mother Poka, little Coconut had the strength and support to make her first experiences of the world memorable ones.
Coconut was seemingly guaranteed a nurturing upbringing when she was born at Down Under Colour, a ranch located in Melbourne, Florida. The site is owed and run by a couple, Scott and Jackie Nelson, who specialize in raising a special breed of horses that have one very noticeable trait.
The couple raise American and Australian paint horses. These animals sport very distinguishable markings on their coats that are comparable to those of a cow. The horses have not just one but two colors on their coat, and these arrange themselves in pinto markings that grant the animals a mesmerizing appearance.
And with their horses winning award after award, the Nelsons are highly regarded within the ranch community. In light of such success, then, they were certainly a safe pair of hands when it came to Coconut’s entrance into the world and subsequent upbringing. Her birth was a highly anticipated one, in fact. The excitement began when the couple found out that a mare, Polka, was pregnant.
All along, the Nelsons knew that this would be an unusual birth because the father was a stallion named Chief, who also lived on the ranch. This meant that the foal would most likely have interesting markings – but which ones? Well, the couple would have to wait and see.
Unfortunately for the Nelsons, they had to wait a whole 11 months before they could see the results. Horse pregnancies are notoriously long, drawn-out affairs. And at the end of it all, they only produce one foal. But for Scott and Jackie, this just made it even more thrilling.
After almost a year, Poka finally went into labor. So much had been leading up to this moment and while Scott and Jackie were tending to Poka in her hour of need, they were beguiled by what they saw. It turned out that the result was even better than they could ever have hoped for.
The couple were amazed to see that Poka’s foal was a Medicine Hat horse, an incredibly rare type of pinto horse. Unlike other pinto horses, they have a white coat, punctuated with dark spots on their body. In addition, they sport dark fur on their faces and ears, hence the name Medicine Hat, as well as on their chest, which many say looks like a shield. Otherwise known as a “war horse,” the little foal was given the name Coconut.
The Nelsons wasted no time in sharing the news with the public and videoed Coconut’s first steps in the outside world. With the caption “Coconut stretching her legs to an audience,” the footage shows the foal running with enthusiasm, which is remarkable considering that she is just two days old at the time.
As the apple (or coconut) of Poka’s eye, the new mother cannot leave the foal unattended for one second. The footage shows her firmly sticking to Coconut’s side, even when she’s running around. Poka takes the opportunity to gaze across the fields, too, alongside the new arrival.
And it isn’t just Poka who’s enamored with the little foal. Indeed, the other horses from the ranch take a good look at the latest member of the clan as well. They also show Coconut what their majestic galloping as a group looks like, much to the delight of the cameraman – presumably Scott – who says, “Oh, and of course that’s Bluey.”
Commenting on the horses’ reactions, the narrator says, “The other horses are very excited and interested, because it was the first time they had seen Coconut.” The narrator goes on to add, “They have seen other foals, and the momma Poka is part of the herd and had just been out with them a few days before. It was amazing to watch!”
At one point in the video, Coconut even has the courage to interact with the couple’s dog, Pixie. The video shows the foal’s curious nature as she lowers her head to inspect the dog. Venturing closer and closer, Pixie affectionately licks Coconut’s nose, much to the foal’s surprise! Later in the video, we hear Scott saying, “Pixie, I think you passed, I don’t think you’re a threat.” It looks like Coconut is an old hand at making friends!
Scott is evidently enchanted by their new addition, continually cooing “Little Coconut” throughout the video. Intrigued by the foal’s rare markings, when she comes close to him, Scott says, “Turn here, and let’s see that little shield on your chest?” Coconut isn’t very cooperative, however.
And the video seemed to be a huge hit with horse lovers when it was subsequently posted on YouTube. Indeed, Coconut captured the hearts of many and before long, more than three million people had watched her prancing about.
The video attracted lots of comments, all of them praising the young foal. One YouTube viewer wrote, “I was searching for a video to lift my heart a bit, having lost my very special cat just a few hours ago, and coconut was just the right thing I needed. Thank you for posting this precious little gift for all to enjoy.”
The Nelsons treated Coconut’s growing fanbase to another video two weeks later, providing an update on her progress. The foal displayed signs of strong growth, showing off to her fans by running two laps at high speed around her mother before calling it a day. Scott is thoroughly enjoying the display and yells, “Go Coconut!” to rally her on.
Moreover, viewers seemed just as delighted as Scott. From the comments, it’s obvious that Coconut again brightened up some people’s days. One user wrote, “This was the sweetest video of today. Thank you for posting it. I’ve shared.” Meanwhile, another commented, “I love the videos plz plz keep doing them. I love her! Thank you for sharing your time with her!”
Since then, Coconut has gone from strength to strength and grown into a beautiful mare. The couple kept people updated on her progress through their Down Under Colour Facebook page. And although she wasn’t the cute foal that she once was, Scott and Jackie still seemed completely devoted to her.
The Nelsons eventually decided to give Coconut to another home once they realized how popular she was in the horse community. They sold her for an incredible $74,000, in fact, an apt price for an animal with such a sparkling personality. Even so, it must have been hard to say goodbye to the Medicine Hat marvel.