Yeah, I'm also always thinking about my pets when I'm gone. And I know my cats miss me very much when I'm away for more than a day, especially my black one, Ayeed. Also Snickers always acts happy when he sees me, even if I've been away for just a few hours, so I guess he'd miss me if I'd happen to go away for a longer period of time.
Agreed Saranda! Honey always seems happy to see me. I'm scared to go to Italy in case she forgets me or thinks my friend is her new owner :/ can that happen over 5 weeks? It'd break my heart if she changed loyalties that fast :(
I don't think it will happen. Horses have excellent memory - I've seen them recognize past herdmates they see several years after parting, they also remember fantastically acurate details from training even if left as pasture puffs for a very long time, or, let's say, characterstics of their abusers, e.g. Become afraid from men with black cowboy hats for life, if such a man has abused them when they were still foals.
She might get friendly with her new owner, but she will most likely remember you. When Snickers was a lesson horse he was taken for a month to a summer camp where he worked as a guided trail ride mount, but, when he returned, he still nickered first thing as he saw me coming. These things don't fade that easily.
Cowgirl - I don't think you have anything to worry about. The horses at my family's farm still come running up to the fence when I get there and are always happy to see me, and I only make it back there a couple times a year. So, 5 weeks is nothing to even worry about. You know what they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder.