“”Little Bit” is an Appaloosa mare who was named equine of the year by PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) International in 2009. She has served her special needs students well for the past 10 years at Equi-Ed, a therapeutic riding program. She is in excellent shape due to the LMF Senior feed she has received every evening for the past 10 years. LMF Senior is the senior feed of choice for all seven of Equi-Ed’s special horses.
A western horse most of her life, at the age of 22 “Little Bit” entered her first dressage show and took first place with a score of 72.4%! Now at the age of 27 she is still more than happy to carry a student during their first canter in the arena or stand quietly as a student is transferred from a wheelchair onto her back. She moves off softly and slowly for those that require a lot of assistance, such as some of our riders that require wheelchair mounts and 2 sidewalkers. She remains stock still as adjustments to stirrups and equipment are made. She is also reliable for our independent walk/trot/canter students who are interested in competition and has traveled to local horse shows and to LA for the CAL-Net Horse Show for riders with disabilities.
“Little Bit” is used for vaulting with our youngest vaulters. Her small stature (14.3 hands) makes her less intimidating to these 4-6 year olds. “Little Bit” also stands quietly and patiently for students working on the ground with her, whether their lesson entails learning to lead, giving her a bath or grooming her. Student, Tara, reminded us that “at Christmas she likes to wear her Santa hat and have her pictures taken with us”. Student Alex says “Little Bit is very friendly to people. She knows when something is wrong and tries to make you feel better. Also she looks in my face. No other horse I know does that. Like she is talking to me.” When not doing busy doing her job, as a therapeutic riding horse, she looks forward to gallops on the trail and running the barrels with her owner.”
Sheila McCarthy Program Manager - Northern California