Horses healing people in Southern Utah

Written by DAVID DeMILLE

ST. GEORGE – The horse has a long history of helping humans, and lately people in Southern Utah are finding new ways to take advantage of the unique relationship.

From teaching young children about responsibility to helping people with disabilities, treating those with mental illnesses to lending confidence to people who have suffered abuse, area horses are acting as a calming influence through equine therapy.

“It’s a symbiotic relationship,” said Linda Filter, a St. George resident whose eight-year-old daughter Erika is participating in a local program. “It’s not just a carrot and a stick.”

Since she started going to St. George’s Dual King Ranch last fall, Erika went from not being able to put on a halter to cinching her own saddle and knowing what it takes to care for a horse, and Linda said dealing with horses has been a positive experience.

“It’s mostly a confidence builder,” she said. “You can be who you are, you can do what you want to do and you can be proud of who you are.” Read full story at The Spectrum >>

4 thoughts on “Horses healing people in Southern Utah”

  1. I AGREE THAT THEY NEED TO FILE FOR PERMITS. I BELIEVE ALL BACKYARD STALLIONS SHOULD BE GELDED. ALL SHOW STALLIONS AND RACEHORSES SHOULD BE MONITORED AND NOT ALLOWED TO PREGNATE 1000 HORSES. IT IS IRRESPONSIBLE. I THINK YOU HAVE TO PROVE IF YOU CAN AFFORD TO HAVE MORE THAN ONE HORSE. I LOVE HORSES AND DOG AND CATS AND OTHER CREATURE THAT GOD HAS PUT ON THIS EARTH UNDER OUR CARE. I THINK IT SHOULD BE MANDATORY TO SPAY OR NEUTER OR CATS OR DOGS THAT ARE STRAYS.

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    1. Sasha I certainly agree on the dog/cat spay neuter. If states and counties passed tough laws with large fines and possible jail time if owners are caught with none neuter/spay pets the dog pounds would disappear. If there were large signs on streets and freeways warning people about what could happen if they break these laws. It’s not the animals fault it’s the owners fault. Some of these owners simply don’t have any common sense.

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  2. The owner of the horse Spirit sounds typical of backyard breeders. They throw these horses in a pasture along with a stallion not really knowing what they want to do with the animals. The owner saying he did not have the time to work with the horse, not even to teach it to wear a halter or lead is why you see so many nice looking and young horses in the slaughter pipeline. This is one of the reasons that states and counties need to get a handle on this type of irresponsible breeding by regulating the horse industry. If these people had to buy a county permit for each mare they wanted to breed I think it would cut down on a lot of over breeding. And have the county livestock inspector check several times a year on the local horse operations would certainly help things. The county would set the price of the permits. Then when the economy goes belly up you would not have the auctions filled up with these young animals headed for the slaughter plants in Canada/Mexico.

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  3. They are a miracle I know they did one for me , back in 1998 I lost my Father In Law in Feb, my Mother in May, and My Husband in Aug. I was completely devastated, I was Lost , and thought there was nothing left for me, I didnt know what to do?????? I worked and came home did nothing didnt care to go any where, or be any friends this went on for months until a dear friend who owned a beautiful Arabian Horse named Blazer, she remembered my love for horses and insisted that He needed to be groomed, I accepted very willingly, I knew he was feisty and she had a time trying to groom him, we took great care he looked beautiful , anyway trying to shorten a long story, In the pasture in the back there were 6 Tennessee Walkers all trained and ready to ride except for one , all had names except for one, all had been haltered except for one , they were all black in color with white blazes , except for one, the most beautiful one but she (a 6 yr old mare) her mane black full and sun bleached with awesome red streaks also her tail, she is awesome I thought, I inquired with the owner about her, he said she was never haltered , because her never had time,, i asked her name he said he never named her, if you can halter her you can name her, I would go every few days and try to get close to her, she was very willing but afraid , each time i went she would get close as I played with the others, finally she started nudging me , nibbling me , I was so happy, I touched her she became my special friend, I started trying to halter her , OH my, I tried every thing nothing worked only scared her, , asked everyone , tried all their tricks to no avail, one day I was feeding her carrots over the fence, I thought a ha I wonder, I got the halter held the carrot very low , she tried to get the carrot i flipped the haler over her head and clipped it so fast neither of us knew what happened she lifted her head with surprise, I looked at her in complete surprise, she ran around for a while a came back to me, with her new halter and on it was her name Spirit , the rest is History ,\many beautiful moments were spent with her , she taught me many things patience, was one… there are many stories I could tell about her although the owner would ever sell her to me, I see her all I can, she has been broken to ride now, she is a very happy horse and I am very happy also……….Just when I thought all was lost then came Spirit, we made each other very happy……..again…….. Life is beautiful again for us both……………..she thinks I made her happy but shes wrong she made me happy again….

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