It is very common to hear people talk about how horses have helped them heal their long-standing traumas. We also hear people talk about rescuing horses. But there is very little conversation around helping horses truly heal and release traumas. Here are 3 reasons we should not only be talking about helping horses release their traumas, but also making it a point to actually do it. We can help our horses truly heal!
Trauma leads to anxiety...
very much the same as it does in people.
Each horse shows their anxiety differently- also, just like people. It is very common for horses to express their feelings of anxiety as common stable vices: cribbing, weaving, and pawing. If these vices go on long enough they will become bad habits (or become unmanageable). If we can help the horse release it's trauma, we can help them heal, stop the bad vices, and live a better life.
is totally possible.
Stable vices are definitely not the only side effects of trauma. From loading in the trailer to misbehaving under saddle, trauma responses and the physical manifestations of trauma can happen anywhere and can range from barely noticeable to straight-up life-threatening for the horse, handler, and any bystanders. By helping the horse release their trauma every aspect of life for the horse and surrounding people can be improved, from the show ring to the trails.
Helping the horse heal
can lead to a deeper bond.
So many people have stories of how horses have helped them heal. People have stories of trauma that result in feelings of anxiety and unworthiness. Those people (and others) have reported that working with horses has made them feel whole again. A huge part of that healing is the emotional connection that people have to horses. There is no greater feeling than when you and your horse have bonded on a deeply emotional level. This often leads to more joy and fluidity during the time spent between horse and rider/ handler.