Leave It to Beaver (1957–1963)
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A Horse Named Nick 

The boys help out at a traveling carnival for a couple of days. Instead of getting paid the $20 they were promised, they are given a run-down old horse.



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Episode complete credited cast:
Michael Ross ...
Rendering Man
Board of Health Officer


Wally and Beaver are excited that they have managed to get jobs with a traveling carnival for the three days that it is set-up in Mayfield. They are getting paid $20 for their work. By the smell of the boys, their parents can tell the job entails working with animals. June doesn't like the idea, but Ward thinks it will be good for the boys, and gives them the advice not to do anything dangerous, especially as animals can be unpredictable. After the fact, Ward does think the work itself has been positive for the boys. What both Ward and June don't think is as positive is that the boys were not paid $20 in cash, but rather in an old horse named Nick, which they have brought home with them. While Ward and June decide what to do with Nick, they all come to learn what sort of constitution Nick has and what little use he would be as a work animal. So even selling Nick may be a problem. But old farm boy Ward comes up with what he thinks will be a good solution for all. Written by Huggo

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Plot Keywords:

baseball cap | See All (1) »


Comedy | Family





Release Date:

2 April 1959 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Barbara Billingsley related in an interview how this episode stood out for her as both one of her worst days on the set and at the same time one of the funniest, due to the fact that the titular horse, which the script called for to be lying down virtually all the time it was on camera, refused to do so on cue. A vet was called in to sedate the horse for an hour so that the scenes could be done, but misjudged the dosage and wound up putting the horse to sleep for the entire day, whereupon the horse could not be moved and all the scenes had to be done around it. This was complicated by the fact that the horse snored loudly and ruined take after take, causing the cast to have to stay well after regular quitting time. Billingsley recalled that six men had to guide the still-groggy horse off the set at the end of the day. See more »


Wally Cleaver: [Wally and The Beaver have to sell their old horse] Boy, you know, I'm really gonna miss Nick.
Theodore Cleaver: Yeah, me too. Well, at first it wasn't like havin' a dog or a rabbit that you could hold, but when I was sittin' with him this morning he put his head *right in my lap*.
Wally Cleaver: Yeah? No foolin'?
Theodore Cleaver: Yeah. I never had anything that big like me before.
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User Reviews

Horsing Around
25 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Wally and Beaver get a job for two days after school and on Saturday at the traveling carnival that's in town. They clean out animal cages, rub down the horses, etc., and come home each day smelling as such. Ward is pleased but June isn't thrilled. (She's always worried about something. although sometimes she has good cause to worry!).

Anyway, Ward encourages the boys but warns them than carnivals have been known to pick up and leave before paying their bills. Wally answers, "Gee whiz. One of the owners has a tattoo of the flag on one arm and his mother on the other. A guy like that wouldn't gyp us."

Well, they didn't exactly gyp the boys, but the carnival people didn't do them a favor either, giving them an old horse named "Nicholas" instead of the cash. June and Ward freak out when Benji's mom calls up and tells June she saw a horse in the Cleavers' garage. To make matters worse, the horse likes to lay down all the tine! They thought the animal was sick, but old Gus from the fire hall explains that sometimes horses do that sort of thing. (Gus - Burt Mustin in real-life, is the wisest man in Mayfield. As Beaver says, Gus knows the answers to anything.)

Even the boys know they have to get rid of the horse so they put an ad in the newspaper want ads under "Used Horses." A man comes to get him but the boys find out he's going to turn Nicholas into glue, so they rush out to the street before the man drives away and demand their money back.

As you can tell, this was a funny episode....and a very warm one in the final few minutes. Hugh Beaumont (Ward) wrote this story, by the way.

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