Anishinaabe Word of The Day

Horse (bebezhigooganzhi)

The Lac La Croix Pony, also known as the Ojibwe pony (bebezhigooganzhii, mishdatim) and Lac La Croix “Indian” or “Indigenous” pony is a semi-feral Canadian horse breed developed by the Ojibwe people. The population became critically low; and, by 1977, only four mares remained. To preserve the breed, these mares were crossed with Spanish Mustang stallions. The modern breed name derives from the Lac La Croix First Nation of Ontario, where the horses were last found in the wild. Historically, the breed was also found in Minnesota.

Today, it remains a critically endangered breed; there are about 150 horses located in Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta in Canada, as well as Minnesota and Wisconsin in the United States.


Audio Piece

Anishinaabe Story

Source (

Ojibwe Spirit Horses are said to have roamed the traditional lands of Turtle Island (North America) for thousands of years before other horse breeds were introduced by Europeans.

Indigenous Peoples have enjoyed a harmonious spiritual and working relationship with Ojibwe Spirit Horses throughout their long shared history.

In the early 1900s, thousands of Ojibwe Spirit Horses could be found in Indigenous communities across Ontario.

However, colonizers viewed the horses as a nuisance for eating their crops and ruining their fields. Ojibwe Spirit Horses were hunted almost to extinction, and by the 1970s, there were just four mares left. These last four horses were deemed a health risk and ordered to be euthanized by the government.

A courageous group of Indigenous men rescued the horses under the cover of darkness and smuggled them over frozen lakes and across the border to a safe reserve in Minnesota. Eventually, they were bred with a Spanish mustang stallion.

Click here to view the whole story!

Related Words


bebezhigooganzhii na a horse

See also: mishtadim na [BL][RL]

mishtadim na [BL][RL] a horse

See also: bebezhigooganzhii na

inday nad my dog; my horse
giday nad your dog; your horse
odayan nad h/ dog; h/ horse
fall off a horse

banoomigo vai s/he falls off a horse

have a horse

odayi vai

  1. s/he has a dog
  2. s/he has a horse
mount a horse
omboomigo vai s/he mounts a horse, gets on horseback

Source (