Sunday, April 09, 2006

The Horse Undertaker

David Heidt drives out to a farm, where he finds the deceased horse, he then picks up the horse with his crane and puts it in a red steel box on the back of his white truck. He takes it back to his farm, where he buries it in a pasture at the end of a valley.There are no grave markers at the end of the road, but it is a final resting place for a growing number of horses, along with a some llamas, deer even a old pet pig. Sometimes visitors come out to lay flowers. For two years, Heidt has offered his services, traveling to farms and veterinary clinics. Back home, he puts the animals in the ground in neat rows and keeps a map showing where each horse is buried.

He makes money off the business, but not a lot! Heidt charges $225 for a horse, less for smaller animals and he said that's not why he's doing it. He says he is doing it for people who are horse lovers and want a respectful burial for thier horse. People,who do not want thier loved one sent to a rendering factory or some other hideous place. Most of his business is from referrals by equine veterinarians, who say they're glad he took on the task. Heidts got the idea to provide mortuary service for horses about 2 years ago when a horse Marta had owned for 27 years had to be euthanized. They buried it on their farm. Afterwards, the Heidts asked their vet, what other people do when their horses die. This was where they learned it was a real problem. So a service was born! Heidts provide this service in a respectful and kind manner attending to the mourners as much as the deceased.

This is an awesome story. Please read the entire story here:

As the owner of a gelding who just turned 27 yo this spring, this thought has (however fleetingly) crossed my mind a time or 2. I am sure S. already has a plan when the time comes. Scooter is a much loved part of our family and will be treated as such even when he goes to 'horseheaven'. I hope he has many many more years with us.


Don't Cry For The Horses,

by Brenda Riley-Seymore

Don't cry for the horses That life has set free

A million white horses Forever to be

Don't cry for the horses Now in God's hands

As they dance and they prance To a heavenly band

They were ours as a gift But never to keep

As they close their eyes Forever to sleep

Their spirits unbound On silver wings they fly

A million white horses Against the blue sky

Look up into heaven You'll see them above

The horses we lost The horses we loved

Manes and tails flowing They Gallop through time

They were never yours They were never mine

Don't cry for the horses They will be back someday

When our time has come They will show us the way

On silver wings they will lift us To the warmth of the sun

When our life is over And eternity has begun

We will jump the sun And dance over the moon

A Ballet of horses and riders on the winds to a heavenly tune

Do you hear that soft nicker Close to your ear?

Don't cry for the horses Love the ones that are here

Don't cry for the horses Lift up your sad eyes

Can't you see them As they fly by?

A million white horses Free from hunger and pain

Their spirits set free Until we ride again...


Blogger occam said...

I have a 26 year old horse, a 20 year old one and a 19 year old one. In this area, they just take dead horses to the landfill. The ground is very, very rocky & would cost well over $1000 to dig a grave suitable for a horse. I am not able to pay for that. That makes me sad but that is why your the poem you have here is so poignant for me. Where can I get a copy? I don't believe it matters in this life what happens to your body, it is the afterlife. Suitable comment for Easter Sunday?
Thanks for commenting on my blog.

2:20 PM  

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