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Bella, the Dog, Best Friend to an Elephant – The Dog Lovers

Again in 2011 we had been saddened to listen to concerning the loss of life of Bella, a candy cream-colored stray who was the unlikely greatest buddy of an Asian elephant named Tarra (see The Bark in Nov./Dec. 2008).

Bella first got here to The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Tenn., in 2004, and over time, Tarra and Bella cast a deep bond, generally wandering the grounds all day collectively.

After eight years of this shut friendship, the sanctuary employees realized the pup was lacking and launched a search. “Late Wednesday morning, Bella’s physique was found near the barn Tarra shares with Bella and 5 different elephants,” Steve Smith, director of Elephant Husbandry, mentioned.


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“Bella’s accidents present she was attacked by animals, in all probability coyotes,” mentioned Dr. Scott, long-time veterinarian for Bella and all of the sanctuary’s animals. Samples have been despatched for evaluation to examine whether or not different causes could have contributed to her loss of life.

Each effort was made to offer Tarra with the chance to permit her to come back to phrases with Bella’s loss of life. “We anticipated Tarra to go to Bella, as elephants of their grief pay nice consideration to the our bodies of their lifeless, however to our shock Tarra stayed away,” Smith mentioned.

With extra proof, the employees has come to imagine that Tarra was conscious of Bella’s loss of life many hours earlier than her physique was found and handled it in her personal manner. In truth, they imagine Tarra discovered Bella throughout or after the assault and carried her physique again to the barn. There was no indication of a wrestle wherever close to the place Bella was discovered, and based mostly on the extent of her accidents, it was clear Bella couldn’t have reached the spot herself. Moreover, examination of the underside of Tarra’s trunk revealed blood.

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“I’m satisfied Tarra skilled the loss of life of her buddy that fateful night time, introduced her dwelling and mentioned her goodbyes,” sanctuary CEO Rob Atkinson mentioned. “Tarra was a real buddy to the tip, and Tarra’s sisters and caregivers will proceed to care for her, as she and Bella did one another.” 


The Elephant Sanctuary, based in 1995 because the nation’s largest pure habitat for Asian and African elephants, has arrange a tribute web page on its web site to memorialize Bella with hyperlinks to Tarra and Bella’s story and up to date pictures of the 2. Info on the creation of a Memorial Fund established in Bella’s honor and the scheduling of a memorial service shall be posted to the web site within the coming days. For extra info, go to www.elephants.com.

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