"Ask Sara" Blog

March 10, 2017

When training therapy horses, I use the same techniques I use with any other horse that will allow us to form a connection while still maintaining mutual respect. I find it most effective when I remember these 3 things:

ONE.  An important component in training a horse for any discipline is to give the horse the confidence it needs to express itself safely with humans. Safely means free from physical harm, not just for the human but the horse. This is the first step in helping to keep the horse mentally and emotionally feeling safe when working in training sessions - and then during equine assisted therapies and activities (EEAT). I always make sure to work toward fully acknowledging the horse and what is best for them, and that they always take away something positive from each experience. And it never hurts to try to have fun!

TWO. I always work toward a deep understanding of each horse: Their behavior, herd dynamics and body language. In selecting therapy horses, a common trait to...

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