Free-roaming Horse Cheers Up German Town During COVID-19 Lockdown

Every morning a white horse named Jenny is seen strolling freely through her Frankfurt neighborhood.  Her owners, Anna and Werner Weischedel, say the 25-year-old, free-roaming Arabian mare, is brightening up the coronavirus lockdown for many people in the Fechenheim area of Frankfurt-am-Main.  “She goes wherever she wants, she has no limits. She can travel further away than we can, because we have travel restrictions at the moment. Jenny has ‘Corona-Freedom’, everything is allowed,” Werner said.For more than a decade Jenny has roamed solo through the town, taking the high street or trotting along the tram line to a nearby field nibbling for hours on patches of grass. “People seem to notice her more because they have more time. A lot of passers-by stroke her, maybe because they are missing some human contact,” Anna said. “Everyone knows her, no matter where she goes. People always greet her nicely, especially now in times of coronavirus, they are happy to have someone to cuddle. People have to stay apart from each other, but Jenny sometimes has 10 children around her. Adults too come out of the tram and hug or pet her,” Werner said.Germany, like many other countries, has closed schools, playgrounds and many businesses to curb the spread of the coronavirus. It has slowly begun to ease some lockdown measures, but people are urged to observe social distances and limit their social interactions. But the guidelines do not apply when it comes to interacting with Jenny and people can still snuggle with her. Since residents have in the past called the police to report an unaccompanied horse, Jenny wears a note around her neck that reads: “I haven’t run away, I’m just out for a walk.” 

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