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Bergen County Family, Volunteers Search For Missing Horse

The Vulgaris family's horse, Chief (credit: Handout)

The Vulgaris family’s horse, Chief (credit: Handout)

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MAHWAH, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A Bergen County family is looking for their beloved horse, which got spooked during a ride last week and ran off.

As CBS 2’s Jessica Schneider reported, Chief, a black and white horse, is 15-year-old Makenzie Vulgaris’ prized possession.

“He is my best friend,” Makenzie said. “He’s my everything.”

Makenzie has been combing the woods in Mahwah for the past week trying to find him.

“I just hope he’s, like, OK,” Makenzie said. “I want him to come back. I miss him.”

On Saturday, a man was riding Chief when the horse slipped. The rider jumped off, and Chief then darted into the woods.

“He hopped off, and Chief just ran and kept going,” Makenzie said.

Since then, there’s been an all-out search for the horse — by foot, by vehicle. McKenzie’s father even rented out a plane this week.

Even psychics are weighing in, calling from all around the country to offer their insight to the Vulgaris family.

“They feel like he’s in a radius of, like, four miles,” Denise Vulgaris said. “They feel like he’s going to other barns, not being seen by humans. He’s, like, trying to hide himself because they’re saying that he doesn’t want to be found; like he’s nervous if he doesn’t see us.”

The Vulgaris family has left the door open at Chief’s stall, with feed inside and hay on the ground in case he finds his way back home.

“These horses have been domesticated,” Carol Tyler of Tyco Animal Control Services said. “They expect dinner at morning and night, and if it doesn’t happen, they get a little antsy and they’ll start searching out food. That’s why we’re a little concerned. He should’ve turned up somewhere; on someone’s front lawn. That’s what usually happens; the horse gets loose, we get the phone call.”

But after seven days, there has been no such call.

Makenzie and her parents aren’t giving up. Meanwhile, horse-riding volunteers from all over Bergen County are planning to meet at the Ramapo Valley Reservation on Friday morning to intensify the search.

“Every day, I’m like, ‘OK, today’s going to be the day,'” Makenize said. “And it’s not.”

Makenzie is just hoping he turns up soon.

Horse-riding volunteers from all over Bergen County were planning to meet at the Ramapo Valley Reservation Friday Morning to intensify the search.

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