A friendly horse raised a few eyebrows after going into his local pub for a Guinness before insisting on stopping in at a second boozer on his way back to the stable.
Tommy, a 16-year-old Gypsy Cob, shocked punters as he took a sip from his glass in a North Wales pub and appeared to bask in the attention.
Owner Jessie Jefferson, 21, was with Tommy when the pair called in at The Hand Inn in Lenton Pool, Denbighshire, for an afternoon tipple and half a pint of Guinness.
Tommy then later insisted on a second pit-stop for another half-pint just across the road at the Plough Inn, North Wales Live reports.
“It was his first time drinking out of a glass!” said Jessie, a freelance rider and horse producer.
“He loves it and it’s good for him, so why not?”
The pub visit was a way of introducing Tommy to the locals, with Jessie having re-stabled him in Denbigh just three weeks ago.
“There are some horse-friendly pubs in Llandyrnog but I haven’t taken a horse to a pub here before,” she said.
“We were riding through the town centre when I saw the Hand had a bouncy castle, so I thought it might be OK to visit. Tommy got so much attention there! Families were asking for photos with him and the kids quickly abandoned the bouncy castle.”
Some pub regulars understandably needed a double take to truly believe what they were seeing when Tommy entered the beer garden and began sipping his drink.
“I thought I was still very drunk,” said one man after Jessie posted a photo on Facebook.
Others were equally baffled, with one mum telling Jessie: “We drove past you as you turned into the pub…my daughter was confused, asking if the pub served hay for horses.”
“He was such a calm gentle horse,” added another local.
“Even got a kiss off him!”
Jessie, who lives in Denbigh, featured in Horse and Hound magazine last year after triumphing at the STARS Champions of Champions final in Aintree.
Not only did she handle the supreme in-hand champion for the horse’s owner, she helped Flintshire’s Lloc & District Riding Club to 14th place out of 51 in the overall standings.
Like Tommy, the champion was a Gypsy Cob, a breed in which Jessie specialises. Their placid nature makes them ideal for learners and Jessie’s partner, Robin, earned his spurs on Tommy, who was a post-lockdown buy in 2020.
Having behaved himself moderately well during this week’s pub crawl – even if he did stick his tongue right in the glass of Guinness, Tommy is being lined up as a Friday evening pub regular in Denbigh.
“It will be his end-of-week treat!” said Jessie.
“I was told that Guinness is good for his joints and he seems to enjoy it. He certainly wolfs down his Christmas Day dinner when I mix in a can of Guinness. He’s spoilt rotten!”
Tommy’s competition name was Mr Pickle, though he is now retired. Too many pub crawls and he might start living up to his formal name, and he’s bound to be invited on a few in the near future.