If you love horses, you know how delightful it is to be around these gentle animals. I own several horses, but before I read this book, I didn't realize how many ways they are used to heal humans. Hayes reports on horses being used for healing in a variety of programs.
In a maximum security prison in Colorado, prisoners are used to tame wild horses and discover compassion and an ability to deal with their own fear. There are several programs known as Horses for Heroes that help returning soldiers suffering from PTSD deal with their demons. Autistic children have been helped through programs that include horse therapy. Teenagers suffering from emotional or addiction problems find healing in horses, as do people with cerebral palsy and other physical disorders.
In addition to discussing the programs for healing with horses, Tim Hayes recounts his own relationship with horses from being a cowboy in Idaho to teaching natural horsemanship in New York City. For those people unsure about getting on the back of a horse, natural horsemanship emphasizes ground work. You can become a friend of a horse and gain all the benefits of the interaction without having to ride. Although once you get to know your horse and realize how gentlethey are, you'll want to take the next step and ride or drive.
This book is a tribute to the amazing relationship between humans and horses. Too many people today miss out on the wonders of dealing with nature because of their city lives and reliance on electronic devices. I recommend that everyone read this book to become familiar with the joy of horses and learning to live with nature.
I reviewed this book for Net Galley.