I came to the realization yesterday that there is a reason dragons are over-done in fantasy literature. Sure we think they're cool, but there's more to it than that. Really, there are only so many mythological beasts that are willing to transport humans, so if the writer is looking for something beyond horses and sailing ships, most animals slink off into the distance, unwilling to do the job.
The current short list for this novel includes dragons, gryphons, hippogriffs, and centaurs. I'm not extremely wild about using any of them. But this world deserves something beyond horses. No offense to my friend Flicka.