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Emotional Rescue: Exploring Love & Loss in Equines

Do horses experience love and have friendships? If so, do they experience the loss of those as we do and is their bereavement as enduring or debilitating? If so, how can we help them? A draft horse refuses to work with another partner after his teammate has passed away, loses his zeal for life, and dies one month later, seemingly of a broken heart. A mare stands vigil over the grave of her dead foal for days, refusing to be moved from the spot. A gelding emits a crying whimper when his brother is put down and keeps up the eerie cry for weeks. Horse-Canada readers provided many such stories when asked if horses grieve. One reader recounted the tale of her two young horses that had grown up with their greyhound buddy and felt his death intensely. As the owner was carrying the blanket wrapped body to the gravesite…

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