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Would You Like To Cuddle A Cow For $75 An Hour To Improve Your Mental Wellbeing?



man cuddling cow

When most people see cows, they think awful smells, poop, flies and dangerous horns. However, this wellness trend will offer you a chance to cuddle a clean, smell-free, hornless cow for $75 an hour. Several studies have shown that the company of animals can help reduce anxiety, depression, and stress. Cuddling a gentle animal can also increase the levels of serotonin and dopamine to improve happiness and calmness [1].

Cow cuddling is a practice that has gained popularity in Europe over the past few decades, especially in The Netherlands. It’s popularly called koe knuffelen in Dutch, which means cow hugging. 

In 2017, when Suzanne Vullers, 51, and her husband Rudi Vullers, also 51, traveled back to their hometown of Reuvers in The Netherlands, they had their first cow cuddling experiences while trying out country-based activities. The couple owns the Mountain Horse Farm in the Finger Lakes region of New York. The bed-and-breakfast is a beautiful expanse of green land and peaceful scenery. 

In 2018, Bonnie and Bella joined the family as part of the Horse & Cow Experience program offered by the B&B. 

Gentle cowgirls

These two Highlander-Angus crossbred cows, Bella, 3, and Bonnie, 2, are cultured therapy animals that are giving the farmyard’s equine horses a run for their money [2]. It’s easier to cuddle cows because they are more welcoming, lying down to let a cuddler relax on their soft bulks. You can talk to them, play with them, stroke them, brush their fur, or just hold them close. Bella and Bonnie are not milked or used for breeding. They are exclusively groomed for the cuddling program.

According to the B&B’s website,

Cows have a body temperature that is slightly higher than humans and their heart rate is lower than ours. Cuddling up with a cow, feeling that lower heart rate and higher body temperature, is very relaxing.” 

The B&B explains that their animals are very sensitive and are quick to pick up on mood markers. 

 “They will pick up on what’s going on inside and sense if you are happy, sad, feel lost, anxious or are excited, they will respond to that without judgment, ego or agenda.” The cows are so warm and gentle that it’s easy to fall asleep on their fur. 

Bills

The Mountain Horse Farm offers 60-minute sessions with the cows for $75. 60-minute sessions for up to 4 people costs $125. You can have a maximum of two hours a day with no more than four people. If you want the full Horse & Cow Experience with the equine horses and subtle cows, that’ll be $300 for 90-minutes. Participants must be 12 or older, and the experience is only available for people who stay at the B&B. The program runs from May 31st to October 31st.

Is safety certain?

According to Rudi, the cows were carefully selected for the program because of their naturally gentle personalities. They were not trained to be calm. They are calm. They were only groomed in the right environment to be better. Recall that the sweet ladies do not have horns. The safety and confidence of every participant are important to the couple.

“A lot of cows are not suited for it,” Rudi said to Independent [3]. “They can chase you out of the field.”

 Cuddlers take their sessions with two supervisors. Suzanne is a trained equine therapist and she usually oversees the connection while giving the cuddlers some privacy. A second person keeps a watch out for other animals on the field. The therapy is not done in an enclosed space or a farm stall. To improve the quality of the experience, the cow and the cuddler get to lie down on the lush greenery, breathing in the fresh air, and enjoy the cool wind.

According to Suzanne, the cows offer a non-conventional form of therapy where a person gets to channel away from their problems without saying a word.

“Whatever they’re going through, they don’t have to talk about it,” she says. “It’s not like [conventional] therapy, right?” 

Although the cows are petted and brushed, Suzanne explains that the Experience is not a petting zoo.

 “These girls (the cows) get to live a natural life,” she explained. 

Bella and Bonnie are loved cows who get to love others back, and what could be more calming than 1,000 lbs of furry, warm heifer willing to snuggle? 

  1. Brooks, Helen et al. The power of support from companion animals for people living with mental health problems: a systematic review and narrative synthesis of the evidence. PMC. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5800290/. Retrieved 26-09-19
  2. Admin. Cow Cuddling Is The New Wellness Trend Now And It Costs $300 For A 90-Minute Session. Beyond Blindfold. https://beyondblindfold.com/cow-cuddling-is-the-new-wellness-trend-now-and-it-costs-300-for-a-90-minute-session/. Retrieved 26-09-19
  3. Elisa Mala. Cow cuddling: The latest therapeutic trend taking off in the US. Independent. https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/cow-cuddling-america-netherlands-therapy-a9007096.html. Retrieved 26-09-19
  4. The Mountain Horse Farm. Official website. https://www.mountainhorsefarm.com/the-horse-cow-experience. Retrieved 26-09-19

The post Would You Like To Cuddle A Cow For $75 An Hour To Improve Your Mental Wellbeing? appeared first on The Hearty Soul.



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