Liberty work for rescue horses

So many horses that come into my purview in the past year have been rescue horses, more than ever before. It is a sign of our times that so many horses are desperately in need of homes. Fortunately, the ones I have met recently have been at my clinics and are in my Equine Ortho-Bionomy practice, and have found loving homes.

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Thinking as a herd

In the beginning there was the herd. The herd traveled as one; each member had its own thoughts but they thought as one being when deciding where to move, when to move, where to eat, to drink, what to do if a predator approached. Their days flowed together and were designed around the quest for food, shelter and space. They shared a language that consisted of body language, sounds, just thinking a desire.

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For the love of ponies!

This past weekend I had the opportunity to work with some ponies, all with different personalities and levels of training. While they are really no different than horses, they are often treated differently and are in some cases so small that adults can’t get in the saddle, which may mean they might lack some basic training.

Rose, the feisty pony, comes into relationship.
Rose, the feisty pony, comes into relationship.

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Have you hugged your therapy horse today?

I’m leaving for a clinic today so I thought I would repost this blog, one of my favorites on the lives of therapy horses. I’m hoping some light shed on this topic will help people consider the lives of these wonderful souls.

Body Language

I know what I’m about to write is probably controversial to many people. But I believe therapy horses need help.

Until our gelding Patches came to live with us, I didn’t know much about the horses in therapeutic riding programs. I thought they were doing a public service and that was great. Now I see remnants of that experience in our horse and have spent two years helping him get confident again. During the past two years, I’ve spoken to others who have either worked in such programs or who have horses from the programs and have also seen similar problems these horses suffer.

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