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The Heirloom Apple Orchard

The hardest part of our job here at Orchard Equine Retirement is saying goodbye to the horses who have become a part of our family. We all take comfort though in knowing the horses spent the last years of their lives living a wonderful retirement with their buddies, and they are now laid to rest under the apple trees next to their friends.

Contrary to popular belief and what vets may tell you, it is not against Pennsylvania state law to bury a horse. Pennsylvania, like most states, has regulations regarding the disposal of dead animals. Local townships may have their own ordinances. Unless an ordinance can be produced stating it is illegal to bury your horse, it is not illegal. An act cannot be illegal unless it is written down. As long as it remains legal for us to bury horses here on the farm we will continue to offer this service to our owners.

If the situation arises where a client's horse passes away while at a veterinary clinic we can arrange the transport of their horse back to our farm for burial by a compassionate transportation service licensed to transport deceased animals.

Here at Orchard Equine Retirement we are passionate about making sure that owners are given the opportunity at this difficult time to lay their horses to rest knowing that they are not breaking the law or be forced into choosing a disposal option that is offensive to their beliefs.

Orchard Equine Retirement provides the option of having your horse laid to rest under the apple trees in our Apple Orchard. The majority of the trees are heirloom varieties from around the World. We even have a Horse Apple Tree! We strive to accommodate owner's wishes concerning the location of their horse's final resting place. Most horses are laid to rest near their pasture buddies.

Spring flowering bulbs, usually Daffodils and Crocus, are planted on each horse's final resting place, many of which include markers.

When you decide to board with Orchard Equine Retirement we will discuss our burial options

The cemetery at Orchard Equine Retirement where our four legged friends are laid to rest facing the finish line and next to their buddies.

Horses at Orchard Equine Retirement are buried complete.

We prepare a lock of hair maintained in a braid so our owners can choose if they wish to memorialize their faithful friends with jewelry or other beautiful items crafted by artists who specialize in horse hair.

Saying Good-Bye: Headliner

The Rainbow Bridge

The Rainbow Bridge 

(inspired by a Norse legend)

By the edge of a woods, at the foot of a hill,
Is a lush, green meadow where time stands still.
Where the friends of man and woman do run,
When their time on earth is over and done.
For here, between this world and the next,
Is a place where each beloved creature finds rest.
On this golden land, they wait and they play,
Till the Rainbow Bridge they cross over one day.
No more do they suffer, in pain or in sadness,
For here they are whole, their lives filled with gladness.
Their limbs are restored, their health renewed,
Their bodies have healed, with strength imbued.
They romp through the grass, without even a care,
Until one day they start, and sniff at the air.
All ears prick forward, eyes dart front and back,
Then all of a sudden, one breaks from the pack.
For just at that instant, their eyes have met;
     Together again, both person and pet.
So they run to each other, these friends from long past,
The time of their parting is over at last.
The sadness they felt while they were apart,
Has turned into joy once more in each heart.
They embrace with a love that will last forever,
And then, side-by-side, they cross over… together.


Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor;
those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again,
just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.

The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing;
they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance.
His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers.
Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass,
his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet,
you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy
kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head,
and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet,
so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

  ~ Author unknown...

Saying Good-Bye: Welcome
Saying Good-Bye: Contact
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