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Desperate for affection? Go and cuddle a cow

AMERICA
By Nicholas Asego | April 11th 2021
Renee Behinfar cuddling a cow. [Courtesy]

Renee Behinfar lives alone in Scottsdale, Ariz. The pandemic has been painfully isolating for her and has left her longing for warmth and touch.

On a recent afternoon, she finally was smothered in long-awaited hugs - by a 900kg cow.

“It was really my first real hug of the year,” said Behinfar, 43, a psychologist who sought out bovine comfort with a friend.

People are signing up to hug cows at sanctuaries across the country, many desperate for affection as the nation approaches a full year of social distancing during the pandemic.

When Sammy the cow, who was rescued from a dairy farm, laid her head in Behinfar’s lap and fell asleep, Behinfar began to cry. The pandemic, she said, has been a time of unprecedented loneliness.

“In the end, I really didn’t want to let her go,” Behinfar said.

Behinfar brought a friend with her to Aimee’s Farm Animal Sanctuary in Queen Creek, Ariz., near Phoenix, to cuddle cows as a birthday present for the friend. The farm has about 100 rescued farm animals, many with disabilities. Cow-cuddling sessions, which cost Sh7,500 an hour, are booked until July. Owner Aimee Takaha says she gets around 20 calls a day about the service she has offered for five years. Business has picked up dramatically in the past year.

“They’re just like happy pills, just to be around,” she said of the cows.

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The bovines will amble over to guests for hugs and cuddles, she said. They also like to roll over on their sides and rest their heads in people’s laps.

[Courtesy of pressReader.com]

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