Sabino Recovery’s therapeutic model is designed to heal the whole person, and so to that end, our horses are also used to work with residents on how to have fun, an experience that is often scarce for those who arrive with trauma, addiction or depression. In addition to therapy sessions, clients are encouraged to spend time with and care for the horses. This time with the horses outside of group can be powerfully therapeutic in that it provides clients the opportunity to connect with, touch, be accountable and take care of another living being. The process of learning, mastering new skills and, in some cases, overcoming fears builds self-esteem. Many residents report that the simple act of “being with” a horse gives them access to healing that is profound.
MEET THE HERD
Oreo is a striking Quarter Horse gelding who works in both our riding and equine therapy programs. His athletic build and gregarious personality make him a quick favorite for all his riders. Known for his bossy attitude, Oreo prides himself on keeping his herd (and his humans) in line – ensuring that he receives the proper amount of cookies and cuddles from everyone he meets.
Buster is as sweet as they come. Don’t let his size fool you, this bay and white paint gelding is a total schoolmaster and specializes in helping nervous riders thrive. Known for his easy trot and can-do-attitude Buster does it all − his sensitivity and easy going personality make him the ideal horse for independent riding and lunge line lessons. Buster loves to be groomed and fawned over, he is even known to nod off at the hitching post when he relaxes.
Mr. Memphis is another seasoned pro. This handsome chestnut gelding is enjoying his second career as a part of our team after retiring from a life as a rodeo champ. Memphis won his ribbons as a team roper, working with his rider to catch cattle quickly and efficiently. As an ex-show horse nothing phases Memphis − he is steady, reliable, and super sweet. In his spare time Memphis loves getting his neck scratched and hanging out with his lady love (Tara) and best friend (Buster) in the turn out.
This flashy black and white gelding is the chatterbox of the group. With a (very) loud, friendly whinny Skippy is often the first to greet both horse and human friends alike. With his signature blue eye and perky black ears Skippy is always keeping tabs on all that goes on at the stables- especially at dinner time.
Ruby is as precious as her namesake. This Clydesdale/ Morgan cross mare has become a wonderfully sweet and sensitive addition to the Sabino Recovery herd. Ruby is an expert at snuffing out treats tucked away in pockets and is never opposed to being fawned over. Under saddle Ruby boasts a graceful, elegant trot and a willingness that makes her a quick favorite of anyone she meets.
Despite her small stature has a very commanding presence at the Sabino Recovery stable. This firecracker of a miniature horse runs the show and makes sure that both the bigger horses and her caretakers know it. Tuffy spends her days parading around with her (mini) horse drawn cart and is often found galloping victory laps around the turnout. Her sassy shenanigans can put a smile on anyone’s face.