Horse sense — and more

A new equine therapy program

By Larry Hendricks

She has found a way to diminish the crushing anxiety that keeps her from full participation in life.

Heidi, 47, is bipolar and also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. / Arizona Daily Sun

Heidi, 47, whose last name is being withheld to protect her privacy, is bipolar and also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder along with her anxiety. She spent many years trying to take care of her mental illness by herself by drinking alcohol and smoking crack cocaine and meth.

She spent time in prison for a DUI conviction, and she is now receiving disability and living at the Royal Inn as a guest of the organization’s transitional housing program.

She credits horses for bringing her back into life.

“I’ve come a long way because of these horses,” Heidi said. “I’m finding my voice. I’m finding out who I am. Those horses, they know everything.”

Heidi, a client for Southwest Behavioral Health Services, is a participant in a new equine-assisted therapy program run by local therapist Libby Smith.



Canadian horse advocacy groups to use undercover investigators/

If interested in discussing equine law, you can contact Equine Law Attorney Adam Trenk,

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August 2012