April 22, 2013 was a sad and stressful day for humans and horses alike at a farm in Wells, Nev. Emma, a gentle white mare, narrowly survived the delivery of Skittles, her sickly filly who only lived a short time.
Under the care of her human family, Emma fought for her life in the 24 hours following the birth of her child. She eventually regained her health, but her heart remained heavy as she mourned Skittles. In the weeks following the tragedy the once lively horse would stand in her stall, dejectedly gazing at the wall.
Enter Av8r, an orphaned colt who was brought across the country in hopes that Emma might take him in as her own. Her two-legged family reports that Emma and Av8r immediately took an interest in the relationship and could be heard calling out to one another across the barnyard. The young horse was bottle-fed milk while the bond between the two strengthened.
Emma’s maternal instinct was strong, though, and Av8r soon began to nurse from his adopted mother. With her newfound purpose, Emma watched over her colt with pride as he grew into a strong horse, quickly surpassing his new mom in height and weight.
A heartwarming testimony to the healing power of family, Emma and Av8r thrived after being connected. Today, their bond remains strong, and with a little help from their human family the two horses have moved past tragedy and are flourishing.