Many children yearn for a pony or a horse, creatures that promise thrills and a freedom otherwise unavailable.

Hannah Simpson was one such child, but when she asked her parents for a horse when she was 11, they said it was too expensive. Undeterred, she turned to the next best possibility on the family's New Zealand farm: a 6-month-old dairy cow named Lilac.

Hanna — who's now 18 — and Lilac take daily rides around their hometown of Invercargill, and as the video above demonstrates, Lilac has an aptitude for jumping over obstacles just like a horse. But she doesn't always have the best attitude, as Hannah told the Guardian: "She is a cow and I can't expect her to ride like a horse. Without a bit of prodding she wouldn't really do anything, she has a very chilled-out nature."

While 7-year-old Lilac doesn't always want to jump, she does seem to enjoy their outings, which also include long swims and walks. Hannah has tried riding other cows on the farm, but she always comes back to Lilac. They have a special bond, as you can see in the second video below.

New Zealand cow is girl's faithful steed
Denied a horse as a youngster, Hannah Smith trained Lilac, a dairy cow, to do some horse activities, like jumping.