Parker County Today August 2016 - Page 58

our pets: LOYAL FRIENDS For the Love of a Friend Does true friendship really last forever? A immediately. Just like people, horses have other horses they prefer to eat with or walk with, but with Hootie and Fancy, it was different.  “Hootie followed Fancy everywhere,” Teresa said. She described their relationship as being, “Kind of like a little marriage. Fancy would tell him what to do but he would always be right there to protect her [and] take care of her when she needed it,” she continued. “He would have done anything for his best friend.” This unfailing loyalty never wavered, even when Fancy’s health started to decline. Early in her career, Fancy acquired a leg injury that had unexpected effects as she grew older. Gradually, because of this injury and the added stress of old age, her health deteriorated. “It got to the point where I was the only one who could get her up in the morning,” Teresa said. “She had no more motivation to get up … . Once AUGUST 2016 PA R K E R C O U N T Y T O D AY ristotle described best friends as a single soul split between two bodies. Most people have had a friend that we thought, or perhaps wished, would be with us forever. However, it’s sometimes only when we lose our best friends that we can truly understand their value to our lives.  Just like people, members of the animal kingdom are able to develop strong friendships that can last a lifetime. Hootie is an 18-year-old quarter horse gelding and Fancy was a 32-year-old, quarter horse mare from Washington. The two had been inseparable since the beginning of the Stars and Strides equine therapy program. The program, established in 2012, uses therapeutic riding as a tool for physical therapy, emotional growth and learning. Teresa Miller, co-owner of the Stars and Strides program, tells us that Hootie became attached to Fancy Hootie and Fancy 56 BY EMMA MOORMAN