The tragic death of Scoop and Charger epitomizes the love and sacrifice of two horses
Scoop came into our lives in October 2005, a beautiful black Tennessee Walker with a white blaze and three white socks. He was gentle, very smart and as playful as a boy can be. About a year later, we acquired his brother Charger. They instantly bonded and we promised them they would be together for the rest of their lives.
On the night of June 21, 2010, my husband and I were awakened by a phone call from my daughter. The news was bad. Charger was dead and Scoop was not doing well. They had been attacked by Africanized Bees.
The owner of the ranch told me that the horses were attacked a few hours earlier and the fire department, the on-call vet and several people on the ranch were trying to save them. Veterinarian Dr. Wayne McNeil told me Charger died a few hours earlier and he was trying to save Scoop.
Scoop and Charger had been stung by thousands of Africanized bees, and the massive poison in their systems could not be overcome. Scoop died just hours after Charger.
SEQUENCE OF EVENTS
Earlier that evening, one of the ranch aides was walking by the stalls at feeding time and he saw Charger on the ground. After contacting the ranch owner, who immediately called the fire department and the vet, the ranch hand discovered that both horses were covered in bees. When he shook the stall to try to scare the bees, the bees attacked him. He ran into an adjacent building and tried to shake them off. A boarder and her 10-year-old son ran over to investigate and were also attacked. They ran into the same building. All three were stung on the face and arms but thankfully are going to be OK.
When the firemen arrived, they were astounded by what they saw. They had never seen so many bees. They suited up and taped their gloves and boots for added protection. They gently sprayed the horses with water in an attempt to chase the bees away. Once they removed as many bees as they could, they opened Scoop’s stall to let him flee. He would not leave his brother. After much urging, he left the stall and ran to the other side of the property. As he was running and rolling, Dr. McNeil, the vet, arrived. He caught Scoop and gave him injections for pain and antihistamines, and did the same for Charger. But it was impossible to save them. They had too much poison in their systems.
The next morning I contacted Debra Saum in San Diego, a dear friend and wonderful animal communicator who has known us and spoken with “the boys” many times. I needed her to help me try to understand what happened.
The first thing Debra asked me was if the horses were distanced from the herd at the ranch. I told her yes, they had been moved that morning into two new stalls that had been built for them under the shade of a tree. She told me that was OK with them; they were happy being together.
SCOOP AND CHARGER “TELL” THEIR STORY
Through Debra, we learned the horses were playing that night and their energy disturbed the bees. The bees were ready to park, not yet an established hive. Normally when bees park they are not agitated, but with the energy the horses created, they sensed a threat to their queen so they attacked. Charger was attacked first, then Scoop. Scoop had to make a tough decision: flee or stay with Charger. Scoop stayed to help his brother pass on.
Debra told me animals understand that death is a transition, they give in to it and do not worry. Native American teachings tell us when a prey animal is hunted by a predator they both agree to the death. The spirit leaves the animal that is dying before there is any suffering. This happens in a nanosecond.
The strongest image she received from both boys was they were willing to give up their lives to save the other horses. They do not feel the same way about death that we do. “We are the epitome of accomplishing a good death. We are strong and we are loved and we can sacrifice ourselves.”
Animals don’t look at death as a bad thing. They died a good death, a dramatic and honorable death. “We are saving many horses’ lives.”
Things this dramatic happen for a reason. There is a blessing here and it will start to show itself in time. I thanked Debra for her incredible message from the boys and felt the peace of understanding.
So many people tried to save two beautiful horses and I thank them for that. They could not understand what had happened because they had never seen anything like this. But I knew because Scoop and Charger had told us the story.
If you ever doubt the nobility, love and loyalty of a horse, please remember my story.
Nikki Tropodes can be reached at email@example.com. See the “Talking Art” of Animal Intuitive Debra Saum at www.debrasaum.com . Contact Debra at 858-759-9760 or firstname.lastname@example.org