Warrior Ranch Horse interaction program

The purpose of this program is to assist veterans and first responders with a focus on those suffering from PTSD. By rescuing, retraining, and repurposing horses, the Warrior Ranch Foundation will give veterans a path and purpose. The Warrior Ranch Foundation will educate veterans on the nature of horses. An equine specialist will do the initial retraining while the veteran observes. When the equine specialist deems the horse safe, the veteran will step into the arena with a trainer and execute the basic skills he or she was taught. 

Why does this work? For safety reasons, anyone working with a horse must be one hundred percent "in the moment" with that horse. This is because, by nature, the horse is a prey animal, and, to the horse, humans are potential predators. When horses are around a human, their senses are heightened. They must be aware at all times because, as a prey animal, their life depends on it. Horses feed off of our energy. Horses are a mirror of us. For example, if a human is feeling anxious, the horse will sense that and respond anxiously. Our equine specialist will give the program participant tips on how to relax by breathing, and the horse will relax in response. For the program participant, this the beginning of becoming self-aware.


9:00am-9:45am Check In and Orientation

  • Introduce the staff.
  • Demonstrate how horses behave in a herd.
  • Explain the Prey/Predator relationship in nature and how to use it to succeed with horses.
  •  Explain what is to come and what is expected of program participants.


  • Equine professional will demonstrate, in the round pen, how safe we can keep things, as long as we maintain principles before goals. 
  • Equine professional will show the importance of human demeanor and how it affects the outcome when handling horses.
  • Equine professional will demonstrate the positive change we have made for the horse and how his life will now be better in every way moving forward.    


10:30pm-10:45pm - Break 

10:45am-11:00am Assign Squads and Begin Bonding with Horse

  • Assign participants to horse interaction coaches.
  • From outside of the fence of the round pen, trainers introduce participants to the horses.
  • Observing and noting the level of experience and fear - or not - each participant has with the animals.
  • Coaches will teach the participants how to move around the horses, safely, while having them touch, brush, and love all over the animal to eliminate as much anxiety as possible for both horse and human.


11:00am-12:30pm Participants Begin Working with Horses - The Basics of Movement

  • In a very safe and low-key way, coaches will show and explain the significance of movement in the horse world and have the participants succeed at moving the horses in the most basic way.
  • Bonding, again, to end on a good note.


12:30pm-1:30pm -Lunch

1:30pm-3:30pm - Basic Movement with Exercises added

  • Participants will learn how and be expected to move the horse successfully, from the ground, in all directions, at the lower gaits of walk and trot.
  • Basic exercises such as circling a horse in a specific direction.



3:30pm-4:30pm Question and Answer Session, Coffee & Snacks

  • Equine professional will have Q&A session.        
  • Camaraderie