Horses are very different from other animals, and their behaviors are much closer to that of humans than one would think. They are social creatures and always seek attachment, just like us.
They are prey animals and are constantly scanning their environments for subtle changes to maintain safety. Humans also do the same!
While humans are natural predators of horses, it’s incredibly unique how these two creatures can learn to bond, to lead or follow one another, and to establish a connection based on trust. To experience such attachment is both rewarding and educational.
So, when one party loses the other, possibly through death, the surviving partner (whether human or the horse) will feel a sense of loss.
This horse-human bond was clearly displayed when a video showing a grieving horse in Brazil that smelt his late owner’s casket and emotionally hugged it before breaking down in anguish went viral.
Wagner Lima and his horse, Sereno, had shared a special bond for eight years. The horse loved his owner and had spent really great times together.
And then, the worst nightmare happened. Wagner was riding a motorcycle and got in a terrible accident. Unfortunately, he lost his life shortly after the crash.
Sereno didn’t know anything about it and patiently waited for his best friend to return. Wagner never came, and the horse possibly thought that his friend forgot about him.
Wagner’s family learned the horse’s concerns and decided to show him what had actually happened. They brought the horse to the funeral, and Wagner’s brother, Wando, took Sereno to the church.
Sereno started making pained neighing noises because he could apparently smell his best friend inside the coffin.
The truth hit the horse really hard that he laid his head on the coffin to say “goodbye” to his owner. He knew Wagner wasn’t coming back.
The pallbearers then carried the coffin to the cemetery, with the horse in tow. Throughout the parade, Sereno kept whimpering and beating his paws to the ground.
Wando Lima told a news outlet:
“This horse was everything to him. It was as if the horse knew what was happening and wanted to say goodbye.”
A close family friend in attendance, Francielio Limiera, added:
“As we brought the coffin out at the beginning of the funeral, (Sereno) sounded like he was crying and as if he recognized that his owner was finally leaving him. He pounded the ground with his hooves and kept on whinnying. It was very sad.”