This is Makayla. We purchased Makayla from a Welsh Cob breeder, Goldhills Welsh, in central California. She is a section D Welsh Cob and was the first horse in our herd to start our equestrian therapeutic activities in the area of carriage driving. She is chestnut coloring with a fabulously long mane.
After the loss of our beloved thoroughbred, Clipper, due to colic, Cheryl was introduced to carriage driving by a dear friend, we embarked upon looking for a horse that could help us enter this equestrian activity.
She was the first horse in our herd to start our equestrian therapeutic activities in the area of carriage driving. She started by carriage driving and eventually competed in the Special Olympics and local county fairs under saddle and in carriage. She has helped our guests win many ribbons.
Carriage driving under normal circumstances is a two-handed activity. However, we had a guest that only has the use of one hand. We crafted special reins to direct the horse using only one hand. Makayla and her driver drove in both horse shows for individuals with disabilities and county fairs for typical drivers.
After a few years of driving and riding Makayla, this guest requested at the morning of a Special Olympics horse show that she wanted to ride in this event without the aid of a side-walker. Not having prepared for this kind of independent riding a family meeting ensued to discuss the considerations. All agreed she was ready. After uncoupling the lead line at the gate of the event, we stood by watching this special horse take care of our precious student. Makayla took such good care of her rider and brought her two blue ribbons.
Shadow is a majestic black Friesian. He started with us on a free-lease for six months. Not too far into the lease we fell in love with him and wanted to purchase him. His owner loved him too and said he was not for sale. Everyone that entered the barn made their way to this special horse. He is quite large, over 16 hands with a very upright headset and a beautiful head and expression. Despite his immense size, he is as gentle as they come. He not only is a fantastic riding horse he also pulls a carriage. He had done some therapeutic work before coming to our barn and was a natural when it came to therapeutic riding and carriage driving. Our good fortune lead to circumstance where his previous owner agreed to part with him and we were able to purchase him before his lease expired.
JR was acquired by Take the Reins through a grant provided by the Nashville Predators Hockey Organization. He is a sorrel Quarter Horse. JR is very sweet and enjoys his job as a therapeutic riding equine. He is gentle, patience and quite a looker to boot.
Dakota and Montana Red are our miniature horses and are too cute not to love. Because of their small stature, they are great during ground lessons with our smaller participants. These two adorable equines are being taught to drive a small cart and can be used in unmounted lessons.
Maggie is the farm’s canine mascot. She is a golden-doodle and is on the larger size. This friendly over-sized pup, entering her teens soon, makes sure that everyone feels welcome as she has appointed herself the greeter of all visitors. Sometimes she’s a bit insistent about getting attention but stays out of the way of the lessons and watches attentively in between classes. She’s never met a stranger and we don’t’ expect that will change.
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