Loyal until the final farewell, Queen Elizabeth II’s corgis, Muick and Sandy, and her beautiful black pony, Carltonlima Emma, watched the funeral procession of their beloved master on Monday. The animals were spotted on the grounds of Windsor Castle as the queen’s casket arrived at her final resting place.
Photographers captured the dogs and pony being cared for by handlers ahead of the committal service at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor. And if the tears weren’t already flowing, the images of the queen’s beloved pets bidding adieu to her surely brought them on.
The Queen was a true lover of animals and was known specifically for her love of the corgi dog breed. At the time of her death on Sept. 8, she owned Sandy, Muick, a dorgi (daschund-corgi) named Candy and a cocker spaniel Lissy, but had loved and cared for more than 30 corgis throughout her 70-year reign. And, many of them were part of the same bloodline.
The longest reigning British monarch also adored horses, receiving her first riding lesson at age three and her first Shetland pony at four, according to Town & Country. She was often spotted riding around Windsor Park and at her Balmoral estate in Scotland, and most recently took a lovely jaunt in 2020 at age 94.
To celebrate her 96th birthday, a portrait of the Queen standing between two of her favorite Fell ponies, Bybeck Katie and Bybeck Nightingale, was released to the public. Henry Dallal — who photographed the monarch on several occasions, snapped the “really special” photo, which truly encapsulates her essence.
“I’ve been so privileged to know and be invited to take photographs of the Queen,” Dallal told Sussex Life following the sovereign’s passing. “I’ve had to pinch myself. This woman is one of the most famous people in the world and I’m taking her photograph because of our common bond — a love of horses.”
The Queen’s son Prince Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson will care for her dogs at their homes in Windsor at the Royal Lodge, while her more than 100 horses will most likely be looked after by her daughter, Princess Anne, and granddaughter, Zara Tindall, who were both Olympic equestrians and well-known horse lovers, according to The Independent.
They certainly were faithful friends until the end.