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  • Kirstin Halverson

Why Horses Make Great Therapy Animals

The Therapeutic Qualities of Horses


Horses are uniquely positioned to serve as great therapy animals. The therapeutic qualities of

horses can help people to overcome trauma and live happier, healthier lives. We can help you

to harness the therapeutic qualities of horses and reap the benefits that horse interactions

have to offer. There are many qualities that horses have that help them help you. In fact,

children and teenagers often gain many benefits from regularly spending time around horses.

We offer multiple programs to help you harness the healing power of horses. Here are a few of

the reasons why horses make great therapy animals.


Horses are Uniquely Sensitive


Have you ever noticed that your pet tends to be attuned to when you are sad or anxious? A

horse can do the exact same thing and are often even more capable of picking up on your

emotions. Horses are uniquely sensitive creatures that are attuned to the emotions of others.

They can sense the emotions of other people and react to those emotions. This ability to feel

and react to emotions is one of the major reasons why horses make great therapy animals.


They Mirror Feelings


Not only are horses sensitive to the emotions of others, but they also tend to mirror feelings. If

you are feeling anxious while working with a horse, they may mirror that emotion back to you.

This often helps people to understand how they are feeling and become more aware of these

emotions. Learning how to recognize your own emotions is a critical component of regulating

them and dealing with them healthily. If your own anxiety is going to make the horse anxious,

you become more aware of how you are feeling in the moment and how you can handle those

difficult emotions.



Horses are Group Creatures


Horses are group creatures that respond to the feelings of others. The way that horses

respond to other people help you to ensure that you are paying attention to your own

emotions. It can also help you to become more aware of the emotions of people around you.

The group mentality of horses can also help you to feel more connected and realize how your

own emotions can impact everyone around you.


Objective Insight into Emotions


Horses are sensitive creatures that experience emotions. They tend to experience anxiety and

other common emotions that are likely to be familiar to you. Attempting to uncover and discuss

your own emotions can be uncomfortable and even painful. However, discussing the emotions

of the horses can help to provide objective insight into your own emotions. By paying

attention to and recognizing the emotions of horses, you can learn more about emotions in

general.


Improve Confidence


Horses are large, powerful animals. Partnering with an animal as large as a horse can be an

incredibly empowering experience. When you spend your time working alongside horses, you

will often be able to improve your confidence. This goes a long way toward building self-esteem

and trust in your own abilities. In addition, you will develop valuable leadership,

communication, and teamwork skills that can serve you in many different aspects of your life.


Help Build Trust


Children or teenagers with traumatic backgrounds often have difficulty trusting other people.

Horses can help them to build trust in others and learn how to form healthy connections. A

horse doesn’t have ulterior motives, so the child or teenager will have confidence that they are

forming authentic connections.


Non-Judgmental


In addition to not having ulterior motives, horses don’t care about how someone looks, the

clothes they wear, or the place they come from. When you work alongside horses, you will

have access to connections that are completely non-judgmental. This can help you to build a

sense of self-worth and well-being. Not only can horses help individuals to build trust with

other people, but it can also show them how to develop healthy relationships.


Get Physical Exercise


Spending time cuddling puppies is certainly good for the soul, but it doesn’t exactly help you

get in shape. Working with horses for therapeutic purposes will often enable you to

incorporate more physical exercise into your regular routine. This exercise causes your body

to release endorphins that can boost your mood and increase your happiness. In addition,

consistently exercising will help you to get healthier, which can provide many additional

benefits in your life.


Improved Focus


Working with horses requires you to stay in the moment and focus on the present. When you

are riding, you have to be aware of your surroundings and potential hazards on the trail. You

also have to be aware of the horse and how they are feeling. Consistently focusing on the

moment that you are in can often help you to improve your focus. Improved focus can provide

many additional benefits, such as better performance in school or work. It can also help

individuals to learn how to deal with their emotions as they arise, rather than ignoring them.


Build a Sense of Connection


The group tendencies of horses ensure that they are creatures that are adept at forming

connections. When you work alongside horses, you will be able to feel connected to the

larger group. This sense of connection can provide improvements to overall quality of life, as

well as helps to ensure that valuable skills can be built. A greater sense of connection helps to

lend direction and purpose in an individual’s life.


These are just a few of the reasons why horses make great therapy animals. When you work

with horses, you are likely to develop an array of skills that can help you to come to terms with

difficult emotions. Our professionals can help to guide you through the process of working

alongside horses to promote healing and overcome emotional obstacles. To learn more about

the services we offer to help you work with horses, contact us at Harness your Power today!

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