Our horses are the heart and soul of our business and are the very reason St. Petersburg Carriages exists. We fondly refer to them as “our boys” and love each of them for their unique qualities. They are truly part of our family.
When they’re not working, the boys enjoy being a herd together in a large pasture behind the barn, where they enjoy running, playing, and sun bathing. They even have a pond where they can cool off on hot days.
With our Florida weather, we are careful about turnout. While they are often put out early in the morning, they are usually brought in to enjoy their lunch. They spend the afternoons in their individual stalls where they each have their own electric fan. They are turned out after dinner to enjoy the cooler evenings.
If a storm threatens, horses are always brought in. Tampa is known as the lightning capital of the world and we don’t take any chances with our precious horses. They are always brought in for their protection.
The horses are fed the highest quality hay and grain to keep them happy and healthy. We also supplement their diets to suit their individual needs as directed by the vet, who also regularly checks them to help keep them in tip-top shape.
We don’t cut corners when it comes to the care of the boys. They are truly the cornerstone our business and we cherish each of them for their unique personalities and characteristics. We want the best for them and ensure that they have everything they need to be happy and healthy.
Henry is our resident Clydesdale and has been with us the longest. He’s 12 years old and stands at 17.3 hands tall (a hand is 4 inches, so 17 hands is 71 inches at the top of his shoulder. That’s nearly 6 feet tall – and that’s just at his shoulder!) Henry is very laid back and knows his job well, remaining calm even in the loudest noise situations. He has the trademark white “feathers” – or long hair – of the Clydesdale on his legs. His dark brown body is beautifully offset by his white blaze, giving him a very flashy look.
Duke is a 13-year-old Belgian cross. At 18.1 hands, he is the tallest of our horses. He’s a hard worker and is very willing to go wherever we need him to go – as long as he gets rewarded for it. He is a beautiful chestnut color with white markers, or socks, which make him look great in pictures. Because he is a cross, he has a lighter frame which allows him to easily pull the carriages and look fancy doing it. Duke is a ladies man and is well known when we work downtown.
Tiny loves his job because he knows he will get lots of attention. He’s a quiet, sweet fellow who is 16 years old. But don’t be fooled by his name. He is a Percheron who stands at 18 hands. While he isn’t our tallest horse, he is our largest, weighing over 2,300 lbs. He is very strong, which makes him perfect for pulling large loads. Because he is such a hard worker and he likes to get the attention, he likes to give it back, making him perfect for close-up pictures. Tiny is known for looking very dignified, often perking up his ears and stepping up with pride, making him look extra regal.
Bill is also a black Percheron and a half brother to Tiny. He is our youngest horse, 11 years old. He joined us from Kansas City in February 2013 but has already established himself as the leader of our herd. At 16.1 hands, he is our smallest horse of all the draft horses, but his solid build still makes it effortless for him in any of our carriages. In fact, when he’s working, he walks faster than the other big boys. And, like the other horses, he is also flashy and enjoys holding his head high in a beautiful arch and prancing with beautiful movement.
Goliath is our newest addition to the herd. He’s a 13 year-old Belgian draft and is officially the biggest of all our horses. He’s 18.1 hands, like Duke, but weighs much more, earning him his name. This sweet boy is currently in training to do our downtown carriage rides. He’s sweet, happy and loves to please and we are thrilled to have him in our family.