[image: photo of Jessica Dallman in a green and yellow hat, and a blue and white long-sleeved button-down shirt. Jess is gently reaching towards a bay horse, palm up, while smiling. The horse is turning towards Jess. Photo by  ShortHorse Studios .]

[image: photo of Jessica Dallman in a green and yellow hat, and a blue and white long-sleeved button-down shirt. Jess is gently reaching towards a bay horse, palm up, while smiling. The horse is turning towards Jess. Photo by ShortHorse Studios.]

The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us in contact with the rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit, and fire.
— Sharon Ralls Lemon

Equine therapy is gaining momentum as a treatment for PTSD, Autism, and other issues. I have found that equine therapy is especially useful for working with trauma, attachment issues, and difficult relationship patterns. Because working with horses addresses multiple areas, I might also recommend equine therapy if you have physical therapy, occupational therapy, or cognitive therapy goals.

I use Gestalt Equine Psychotherapy as a primary modality or as an adjunctive, supplemental therapy.
Equine therapy sessions in Colorado take place at Happy Dog Ranch in Littleton or at Medicine Horse Program in Boulder. Equine therapy sessions in Wisconsin take place at Snapdragon Farms in Mount Horeb or at Three Gaits in Stoughton.

 [image: Two brown horses are engaging in mutual grooming in a paddock. Their necks are wrapped next to each other, as if in a hug, so that they can groom each other's back. Other horses are nearby. A golden field is in the background, with shadowy mountains, and big white clouds. Picture was taken at Happy Dog Ranch.]

[image: Two brown horses are engaging in mutual grooming in a paddock. Their necks are wrapped next to each other, as if in a hug, so that they can groom each other's back. Other horses are nearby. A golden field is in the background, with shadowy mountains, and big white clouds. Picture was taken at Happy Dog Ranch.]

"Gestalt Therapy is defined as the process of exploring our experience in and of relationship while in relationship. Holding ‘I-Thou’ with the utmost respect, working to support growth in relationship, deepening contact, and inspiring creative choice are core tenants of this therapy. Gestalt Equine Psychotherapy (GEP) holds the above definition as fundamental as we integrate horses, and therefore nature, into the therapeutic process. Horses bring desire for relationship without prejudice, seeking contact and congruence as the only criteria for the creation of emotional intimacy. Nature exemplifies awareness and presence, providing an opening for us to move into contact and connection in the way we are designed, unburdened by layers of familial, societal, and systemic introjects. Horses and nature therefore allow the opportunity to re-create our original attachment with ourselves, environment, and others when we have experienced emotional injury, relational rupture and/or loss. Our journey into land/nature/equine based relationship provides the foundation to heal the nature of our being."

- Duey Freeman, Founder of the Gestalt Equine Institute of the Rockies