Our Therapy Horses

Each member of our herd has a very unique personality, but they all share traits in common that make them ideal for serving the participants in our therapeutic riding and equine-assisted activities programs. Horses that succeed in these roles tend to be between 10 and 20 years old and have a solid foundation of training and experience. They’re also kind and patient by nature, less reactive than the average horse, and in good health with sound walk, trot, and canter movement which is especially important for riders with physical challenges.

We assess new potential herd members for these desired qualities, followed by a trial period and training program to introduce them to their new role. They practice being on lead, teaming with side-walkers, working with riders that may be vocal or physically unstable, and interacting with items on our sensory trail. They then complete a final assessment before serving riders and participants.

In appreciation of the special gifts our horses provide, we give them the best possible care with the help of veterinarians, equine dentists, horse chiropractors and massage therapists, saddle fitters and farriers. This kind of quality care requires a great deal of resources. Please contact us if you’re interested in making a recurring or one-time contribution toward their care or if you are interesting in donating a horse that may be suitable for our programs.

Berri

Full Name: Crescent Lake Berri Wyne

Birthday: May 8, 2002.

Berri is a dynamic horse with no shortage of energy and curiosity! She is a fiery red head whose expressiveness makes her stand out in the herd. Over the years she has worked in the carriage driving program and the therapeutic riding program. Today she brings her special energy to unmounted work with groups. Her sensitivity makes her uniquely qualified for horse-human interaction. She is quite interested in communicating and connecting with participants. Berri is best known for her skill in getting the attention of her humans, especially when it’s time for dinner!

Chloe

Full Name: Chloe Girl.

Birthday: February 14, 1999.

Hidden Acres oldest, wisest, and calmest horse–Chloe is one of our founding members. She is incredibly sweet and has accepted and carried the most physically and developmentally challenged riders for many, many years. Her kind heart and gentle manner have changed countless lives for the better, both physically and emotionally. Now retired from our riding program, Chloe shares her beautiful gifts in our unmounted sessions as she continues to provide our participants with the opportunity to heal from the equine-human bond.

Jocasta

Full Name: Spring Hollow Jocasta

Birthday: May 8, 2002.

All who have had the pleasure of meeting her know the meaning of her name, Shining Moon, suits her perfectly. Jocasta shines brightly as a founding member of the Hidden Acres herd. She is a strong, versatile, hardworking horse and a leader in all three of our therapeutic programs. While Jocasta’s first passion is for carriage driving (rightfully so, as a world champion in the obstacle division), she also excels equally in both our therapeutic riding and horsemanship programs. Jo’s intelligence and great heart make her ideal for helping those with physical, developmental, and emotional challenges through the benefits of therapeutic riding and equine-assisted activities.

Suzie

Full Name: Doublesan Scootnrouge

Birthday: December 15, 2001.

Suzie lived a beautiful 21 years, sharing her tremendous gifts with humans and horses alike. She will live on in the hearts of all of us that had the distinct privilege to know her. Suzie was curious, playful, and super talkative. A star in our group and unmounted horsemanship programs. Suzie’s lively, energetic personality and intuitive sensitivity to peoples’ energy made her an ideal partner in equine-assisted therapy activities. She will always be remembered for her willingness to turn towards and connect with people. She truly enjoyed humans and excelled at her job mirroring them, leading to self-awareness and connection for participants of all ages.

Quinn

Full Name: The Mighty Quinn

Birthday: June 1, 2010.

Quinn is a rare horse, and not just because he is one of only 4,000 registered curly horses in the world. He has a deep soul and connects with people in a truly special way. He is a steadfast companion to many participants going through a diverse range of challenges in our mounted and unmounted programs. He is the snuggliest of the bunch: well known for putting his head on your shoulder and blowing in an ear to share his secrets (while keeping participant’s secrets to himself of course). Quinn has a good-natured, playful spirit and will unzip your jacket when you least expect it!

Zoe

Full Name: Beta B Moet

Birthday: April 23, 1999.

More info coming soon!

Coco

If you are watching the herd and see spots before your eyes, you have found our new pony, Coco! Coco is an appaloosa, known for their colorful spots, who came to us all the way from Texas. She is the only appaloosa in our herd, and she looks pretty snazzy out in the field. “Don’t Mess with Texas” is the motto of her birthplace and she knows it! As a pony, she’ll always be shorter than the others, but don’t tell her that, she’s the new boss! She is not afraid to speak her mind with the other horses. Coco enjoys her new job as a therapeutic riding pony. She especially loves carrying little ones around.

Mateo

Mateo is a handsome Haflinger who comes to us from Lancaster County, PA where he pulled a buggy for an Amish family. He is now a superstar in our carriage-driving program. His luxurious mane and tail are admired by all. His favorite quote is: “Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful.” He is highly sensitive and loves to meet new people. Pulling a carriage in the carriage-driving program doesn’t seem like work to him. Although he is somewhat of a ham, he has a real soft spot for our participants and loves nothing more than making them smile. We are so lucky to have him as part of the Hidden Acres herd, and he knows it!

Simba

More info coming soon!

Little Zoey

Full Name: DPS Ima Star

Birthday: May 5, 2007.

Kiera

Full name: DPS Riccan for the stars

Birthday: May 5, 2009.

These two mini horses, by their very existence, make the world a more joyful place. Kiera and Little Zoey are half-sisters. Kiera, while 3″ taller, is the younger of the two. In typical sibling fashion, Little Zoey makes sure she knows it! Zoey makes the decisions in this bonded, connected relationship. It is beautiful to watch as they each share their remarkable gifts.

Kiera is a star, by her own right, in our carriage driving program. At 36″ tall, she excels while pulling an adult in her little cart! Little Zoey shines in our senior program; at exactly 33″, she is the perfect height and temperament to provide love and connection to those in a wheelchair.

 

Currently Seeking Therapy Horse

Do you know of a horse that would be a perfect fit for our programs?

Hidden Acres Therapeutic Riding Center, located on 80 acres in Naugatuck CT, is in search of a horse to join our therapy herd. We are a private nonprofit 501-3C providing equine assisted therapies and activities to children and adults with special needs, disabilities and mental health challenges. The members of our therapy herd are considered full partners in the therapeutic process and as such are respected team members who are afforded the best possible care. Our horses receive regular equine massage, saddle fitting, veterinary care, specialty shoeing if necessary and constant assessment of their physical and mental health. All horses have daily turn out on large grass pastures.

The horse we seek should possess the following characteristics:

• 5-17 yrs. old
• 14-15.3 hands
• Sound
• Finished W/T/C
• Calm, easy-going temperament
• Suitable for beginner riders

We are interested in all of the following: donation, free lease or horses available for purchase. You can be assured of an excellent home for your horse, whose contribution will be highly valued. In free lease situations, owners are welcome to remain in contact and continue riding their horse outside of the therapy schedule. Horses in our herd typically engage in eight or less therapeutic lessons per week. A 30-90 day assessment and training period is necessary before accepting a horse into our program. Hidden Acres provides all necessary care except for major emergency care during assessment period regardless of whether the horse is accepted into program.

Please email Rebecca: [email protected] or call/text: 203-516-8380 for more information.