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Archive for August, 2016

PTSD Veterans Communicate with Horse: The Results are Shocking

PTSD Veterans Communicate with Horse

Saratoga WarHorse Images, 2016

We at Stoneways love all the stories that are out there about horses. Continue reading for a heartwarming story about human and horse.

PTSD (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) is a disorder where in which someone experiences trauma. Many soldiers experience PTSD and symptoms consist of depression,  sleeplessness, substance abuse, mental and physical deterioration and suicide. Sufferers of PTSD encounter distress in regular social life, for example, they experience difficulties in social settings, have marital issues and trouble with parenting. These effects are undoubtedly detrimental to someone’s life.

The bravery of war veterans can sometimes come at a huge cost- their entire life can be consumed by PTSD. Their undetectable wounds affect every part of their lives as they don’t tell anyone. Many relatives, spouses and friends are oblivious to the painful reality they face every day or they become deeply affected by their loved ones being depressed.

A program called Saratoga WarHorse was launched to help veterans overcome their PTSD symptoms and hopefully recover by using a unique equine therapy.  This life-changing program was created by Bob Nevins, a Vietnam veteran himself, who saw similarities between veterans with trauma issues and horses who were bound to the racecourse for years then felt lost after leaving. Both horses and veterans find the transition of career difficult and leading a different life becomes distressing.

Veterans can partake in the three-day program free of charge including accommodation and meals. The program is really concentrated on veterans with trauma and suicide prevention. When introduced to the horses and as veterans get used to them, they and the horses seem to deeply connect on another level. Feelings appear to arise that have been suppressed for years and a lot of the stress seems to leave their bodies. This really is a sign that we are not so different to animals as we may think.

This might sound a tad hard to believe but there is scientific evidence that the Saratoga War Horse program works. And if veterans feel it, isn’t that enough? In the video below you will see the intense influence this unconventional therapy has on the veterans and how it brightens their lives that were once so dark.

See the amazing video below:

Find out more about what we do at Stoneways here.


Healing Horses: Magic Minute Mares Used for Horse Therapy

Healing Horses

Yes, it’s true that heroes can come in all shapes and sizes- these ones are warm furry mini horses used for healing horse therapy. Many mares are using their cuteness and tranquillity to cheer up the most in need of love, affection, and serenity in our hectic world. One particular precious pony, Magic, made it in Time Magazine’s top 10 heroic animals and for a marvelous reason…

The story about mini Magic (pictured above) is deeply touching and quite frankly, magical. An elderly woman in an assisted-living facility didn’t talk to anyone during her three years there until that one day, she saw Magic and had to comment on Magic’s bedazzling beauty. Since then, she has continued to communicate. This horse changed her life for the better by simply being there and offering a love that only animals can- no pressure, no awkwardness and no shamefulness- just kindness without expecting anything in return.

As you can imagine, this day didn’t just change her life but everyone who cared for her, everyone who wanted her to simply smile. The activities director was so profoundly moved she began to cry and was bemused by the blue-eyed beauty’s remedial powers. Magic managed to do the near impossible without a psychology degree- just by using her/his pure and peaceful nature.

More beautifully, this story is just one of many. These spirited heroic horses are going (or shall I say trotting) around spreading their joy to the neediest of people in assisted living facilities, hospitals, and hospices.

So who came up with this magical idea?

This truly outstanding organization named Gentle Carousel Miniature Therapy Horses founded nearly 20 years ago had the main aim to bring curing horses to immobile people who needed some sort of support or therapy whatever their age. The idea has become extremely successful as the hope-bringing horses have helped the fragile elderly and ill children feel love and warmth according to many testimonials.

Garcia-Bengochea, the co-founder of the organization, explains that the horses are carefully bred, trained for two years and are of course, charmingly teeny. The reason for their small size is so they’re not intimidating to the weak and frail- just the right size for a good old cuddle or two…or three or four…

Furthermore, miniature horses interact well with humans making them the perfect caring companion (wiki). Gentle Carousel also assures that even though a lot of the horses’ work is indoors, they live natural and happy lives on a private farm in North Florida where they can run fresh and free with their other equine chums.

 The Gentle Carousel organization has deservingly won many prizes including the E.T York Distinguished Service Award and will undoubtedly win many more while boldly bettering the lives of people for years to come.

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