Our newest volunteer, Jean Jacques Robert, Newfoundland service dog, who loves and entertains everyone, and helps Kari Ann balance while walking on snow, ice and uncertain ground! Jean Jacques is still a puppy at 125 pounds, and he aids our students with learning to lead horses!
Our newest human volunteers. These advanced riders aid our students in helping their relaxed yet alert riding posture. And they help our beginning jumpers.
An interview with Sophie L., Wildhorse! Volunteer and English riding student. Sophie volunteered and studied basic dressage and English equitation at Wildhorse in 2010, is resuming both her studies and volunteering in February 2011. Sophie studies at the University of CA, Berkeley.
News: Sophie has graduated from Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine!
Kari Ann very patiently and enthusiastically taught me the foundations of how to safely mount and ride a horse using minimal force, emphasizing body language and relaxation in the realm of equitation and English-style riding.
My love of both horses and the children who love them, and years of equestrian training and practice, enables me to be a senior volunteer at Wildhorse, a therapeutic horseback riding program in Livermore, CA, directed by Dr. Kari Ann Owen.
I was a preschool teacher for 15 years of infants, toddlers and children up to 12 years of age.
I have been riding since age eight, and was initially trained by the foreman of a ranch in Redding , CA. I then learned the vaquero method of hackamore training (bitless face piece, http://www.horsechannel.com/western-horse-training/vaquero-way-17722.aspx) from a graduate student of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Agricultural and Horsemanship Program while I attended California State University at Chico.
Further training has included more equestrian training and riding clinics while a member of the Walnut Creek 4-H.
The most important clinic I attended was the famous Monte Foreman clinic in the 60’s, while a member of The Contra Costa County Horsemen’s Association, http://www.westernhorseman.com/index.php/featured-articles/article/338-monte-foreman.html. During this time, I was a trail guide at Buckeye Ranch, Lafeyette, California.
As an adult, I trained and rode 4 horses of my own in Brentwood , CA, teaching my 3 daughters at the same time. My preference is for the Arabian horse, for pleasure riding.
I currently own and ride my own Arabian mare that I keep pastured in Bethel Island , CA.
I have taken additional volunteer training at Wildhorse to specifically “task train” in order to assist the disabled riders mount and then proceed through arena and trail classes. Being a senior volunteer means being a Team Leader, making sure that the livelier of the two horses Wildhorse uses for lessons is groomed, tacked up and temperamentally ready for class.
I love Wildhorse, and hope to be present when Wildhorse finds a permanent home.
Please contact Dr. Owen for further information on my character and professionalism through the Wildhorse web site.