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How Does Equine Therapy Work?

Talking with your pet is easy. You can share your thoughts and feelings without worrying. What you say to your pet is told in a judgment-free zone, and they will still love you. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee of unconditional love when talking with your friends or family.

When you need to discuss sensitive topics, you can turn to a therapist for help. Conversations in therapy are healthy because you can discuss uncomfortable topics without fear of being judged. There are times, though, when talking with your therapist is difficult. Your therapist may suggest you try Equine-Assisted Therapy (EAT).

What Is Equine Therapy?

Equine therapy reportedly began in ancient Greece. Hippocrates, the “Father of Medicine,” documented his thoughts about the therapeutic benefits of horseback riding. Since then, horses have been used to help those with various mental health disorders.

Specially trained equine therapists will combine psychotherapy with equine therapy to help you create healthy behavioral change. For example, your equine therapist may have you grooming, riding, feeding, or leading a horse around the designated area, depending on your mental health diagnosis.

Why Is Equine Therapy Helpful?

Have you ever felt freer when you’re outside? The inclusion of equine therapy into your treatment allows you to be outside. Studies about equine therapy have found positive connections between equine therapy and decreasing symptoms of mental health disorders. Adults who may hesitate to share in a psychotherapy environment can feel more comfortable working with their horses. A few reasons why include:

The Environment

Equine therapy environments are non-threatening, thereby making you feel safe. A key to successful therapy is feeling secure.

Greater Trust

When participating in equine therapy, you learn to trust your horse, surroundings, yourself, and those around you. Learning how to build trust benefits the well-being of those with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Increased Self-Esteem

Horses are large animals that can intimidate some. You may wonder if you will ever be comfortable around them. However, your fear can decrease over time as you master taking care of the horse. Whether you’re learning how to take care of the horse or ride it, you can see the achievements you made during your treatment. A sense of worth or happiness can increase your self-esteem. Unfortunately, horses don’t always listen. While you’re telling it to go right, it may go left. Working with a horse is a great way to learn to be assertive, not aggressive.

Connection With Your Feelings

Horses are intuitive animals. They can sense how you’re feeling. Sometimes they will mirror your emotions. The feeling of being understood and accepted can increase your emotional well-being. Finding your comfort level with your equine therapy horse can take time, but it’s worth it.

The combination of psychotherapy and equine therapy benefits your mental health. The relationship you build with your horse can translate into building healthy relationships with yourself and others. The equine therapists at The Guest House can guide you to build self-esteem, courage, and trust. Your emotional growth is why we encourage you to participate in equine therapy. We know through better mental health, you can find your inner peace. From the moment you enter our doors, you will experience quiet luxury. You can start a conversation about treatment at our location in Ocala, Florida when you call (855) 483-7800.