Language selection


Hoofed Helpers

Princess Louise with soldiers after being saved in Italy.
(Photo: Public Domain)

Hi boys and girls, I am Bonfire Jr. the horse. I discovered a really neat old cap badge for Canada’s Remount Depot during the First World War that looked like it was showing an old relative of mine! Horses were very important helpers and friends for soldiers during past wars.

I heard a story from the Second World War that shows this bond. Soldiers fighting with the 8th Princess Louise’s (New Brunswick) Hussars in Italy found a wounded young horse. The Canadian soldiers—mostly farm boys—took her to a medic for treatment. The men liked her and named her ‘Princess Louise’. She would recover and stay with the regiment for the rest of the war as a special pet and mascot. Wherever her soldiers served (Italy, France, Belgium and the Netherlands), Princess Louise went too, travelling in the back of a big truck.

After the war, Princess Louise was shipped to Canada where she became a local celebrity in southern New Brunswick. She was honoured in parades, awarded medals and met royalty. She even became an honorary Canadian citizen and a member of the local Royal Canadian Legion branch (signing her application form with her hoof). She would die at the ripe old age of 29.

Bonfire Jr. the horse
Date modified: