How I Became a Therapy Horse

Hi, my name is Lucy! I came to TREE House nearly six months ago, and I’ve loved getting to know everyone here, both human and horse. You may be wondering how I became a part of TH. Well, let me walk you through the winding tale of my life!

I was born in Oklahoma on April 26th, 2009. My parents were a pair of ideal American Quarter Horses–stocky, strong, and kind. I’m a spitting image of my dad, who is also a blue roan. That means our base coat color is black, and we have a sprinkling of white hairs over our bodies. This gives us a bit of a blue hue!

Once I was around a year old, I left the little farm I was born on and began my journey into the world. I had several owners in Oklahoma who taught me not only how to be around humans, but how to let them on my back and guide me around! This took a lot of trust and compassion from both ends. This was soon put to the test as I was sent to work on a feedlot–a place with a lot of cows, and a lot of scary sights and noises!

Even though working on the feedlot was frightening at times, it always turned out alright, and I learned that I could trust the people in my life to keep me safe. And I kept them safe, too!

When I was around 6, I landed in an auction house in Missouri. It was time for a new chapter! My next owners ran a small horse boarding and training business right in the middle of a neighborhood near St. Louis. It’s there that I learned the ropes of a very different job–helping teach kids (and adults) how to ride!

While I no longer had to worry about pushing cows around, I now had to learn some new skills, like patience and flexibility. As my new riders learned how to communicate with me, I learned how to connect with all different kinds of people! This was amazing for my physical, mental, and emotional well-being as I got lots of exercise and lots of love.

Eventually, a young lady came around and started taking lessons with me. We had so much fun going on all sorts of adventures together–jumping, trail rides, dressage, cross country, bareback riding, and so much more! Not to mention the spoiling I received–treats and brushes virtually on demand! One day, I found out she would be my new owner, and we would tackle life together from then on.

Over the next 4 years, I continued to have lots of fun times with my human. I even won her a few blue ribbons at a horse show! Then, a few months ago, my owner thought it might be time to start a new adventure together: one unlike any we’ve been on before.

She knew about TREE House of Greater St. Louis because she had volunteered there as a teenager. TH’s mission was very meaningful to her, and she knew firsthand how a horse can change a person’s life for the better. She also knew that I had all the traits found in those special TH therapy horses–gentle, patient, diligent, brave, easy-going… so she decided to share me!

Soon after, I arrived at the gorgeous TREE House property, and life was good! I have new horsey buddies and my owner and I get to enjoy fun rides together like always.

But now, I also get to enjoy spending time with all the people that make TREE House so amazing. I had to do a little prep work first, because it took some time to get used to everything that makes equine-assisted therapy possible. Balls, hula hoops, rain sticks, pom-poms, flags, sidewalkers, leaders … it’s a lot for a horse to process! But, just like before, some kind and trustworthy people made the process smooth and easy for me.

Looking at my “resume”, you might not expect me to have ended up as a therapy horse. But all of my varied life experiences helped me become the horse I am today with the skills to succeed at TH. I love keeping my riders safe and helping them achieve their therapy goals!

I couldn’t be happier putting so many smiles on so many faces … and getting so much love (and treats)!



P.S. I’m also besties with Orange Crush, barn cat and mouse chaser extraordinaire!




Written by Hannah Arnold