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Wild horse thanks his rescuer with a kiss as he’s freed from his chains

At least as of a few years ago, it was common practice among some people in Romania to chain together the front legs of horses to keep them from running away.

This understandably upset many animal activists.

One of the issues they brought up was that the horses weren’t trained to understand what was going on, so they would try to run away and break free.

A pretty common reaction, don’t you think?

Of course, we can all imagine what happens next – the chains either cut into their legs or trip them up and cause devastating injuries to their legs.

At that point, there’s not much more you can do for them.

An organization called Four Paws is trying to change this treatment.

They’re working with the Roma people who commonly use this practice.

They use their horses for labor and since they travel around frequently and are quite poor, they don’t have permanent places to house their animals.

On their website, Four Paws explains:

“Animals and humans lack everything that is needed for a good life, and because of the hard work and poor keeping conditions, the animals suffer from malnutrition, painful colics, lameness, and other ailments.

The animals are overworked, they do not get adequate veterinary care, and have bad or no hooves.

Their keepers lack the financial resources to help their horses and are barely aware of their needs, while heavily relying on them. We want to help.”

In a video posted in 2016 that’s now been viewed over 13.7 million times, Four Paws shows us one of their rescues.

And we can’t but feel relieved when the horse is finally free.

First, we see what chains can do to a horse’s leg as they struggle against them.

The clip was filmed when a veterinarian with Four Paws named Ovidiu Rosu was visiting an area in rural Romania called Letea and saw a horse with his legs bound trying to run.

His attempts to gallop were taking him nowhere and he was simply hurting himself.

So Rosu did the only thing an animal lover could do – he decided to free the horse from its chains.

(Arguably a controversial move when it’s not your horse and belongs to someone without many assets.)

He appears to have sedated the horse in some way since there’s certainly no way to help while an animal of that size kicks and panics.

Then he set to work removing the chains that had dug deep into the animal’s hooves.

As he worked, a volunteer accompanying him recorded the deed.

They also caught an amazing moment of thanks between two nearby horses who had been watching the action.

And this will REALLY make you reach for the tissues.

While the horse Rosu helped was recovering from his sedative, one of the nearby unchained horses came up and gave the man a gentle nose boop. Another stood by as if to add its thanks.

It was likely a moment that Rosu will likely never forget.

We sure wouldn’t! It’s moments like those that make it all worth it since animal rescue certainly doesn’t pay well.

Luckily, when the injured horse woke up, he seemed to have some idea that the man’s presence was no threat and was calmer.

Rosu helped him get back up on his feet and left him where he found him.

Four Paws does some admirable work in Romania, not only administering volunteer veterinary care but also sterilizing them so their population doesn’t get out of control.

They also run an education campaign for the Roma people to encourage them to treat their animals with respect (and prevent them from getting injured since a wounded horse doesn’t do anyone any good).

Now, they’re working with the next generation of Roma children to make sure they grow up with a healthy respect for the creatures they live with.

Be sure to view the touching video of Rosu’s rescue and a horse’s thank you below.

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