Miss Dixie, a miniature horse just short of 3 feet tall, gaited through the Pahrump Tractor Supply Co. retail store in her Christmas apparel.
DiAnna Frey-Johnson, Dixie’s owner, said this was her first appearance indoors for the 17-year-old miniature horse that was rescued in North Dakota some nine years ago.
Dixie has made several appearances throughout Pahrump over the last several years.
“We started doing rest home visits a year ago, and this year they asked her to come inside the building and actually do bedside visits,” Frey-Johnson said. “Yesterday, just to make sure that her costume all fit right and everything and that she was not going to be an issue in the closed spaces with the carts and such, I took her on a trial run to Tractor Supply, which she was just a major hit.”
Frey-Johnson also said she is looking to bring the Christmas spirit to Pahrump, something she said there should be more of in the area.
“This year, I decided, you know what, it’s time to bring Christmas spirit to Pahrump because we really need it,” she said. “I was raised in a small town where we went up Main Street and the storefronts were all decorated and stuff, and I miss it.”
Frey-Johnson went onto say that, “Really, what my goal is, just to make people happy, and a little bit of awareness. Dixie, like I said, was a rescue, and I work with rescues a lot, just kind of making people aware that just because an animal is a rescue, doesn’t mean that they’re garbage.”
Dixie has been making her way around town for the past few years, being brought to local farms, strolling along in parades and has made other appearances in the Pahrump area.
“I got started simply because I like doing the costumes and dressing up my horses and stuff, and I was doing parades with her,” Frey-Johnson said. “We also dress up. I have a Victorian costume, and she pulls the pony cart, and we do the parade.”
Frey-Johnson said people started asking her if Dixie could make an appearance at various locations around Pahrump.
Frey Johnson said things really started to get going when she started offering pony rides for special needs children at RNG Farms on the north end of Pahrump. That was about four years ago.
From there, the seven-year Pahrump resident said Dixie went onto doing pony cart rides at the Pahrump Disability Outreach Program’s Pumpkin Days event.
Dixie has also functioned as a therapy animal as well.
“I have two handicapped, I’m going to call them children, but they’re 37 and 40,” she said. “She’s just so good with everybody.”
In recent times, the miniature horse also has made stops at the nursing home on the north side of town as well.
Contact reporter Jeffrey Meehan at firstname.lastname@example.org