After years of service, there comes a time when our Equine Teammates tell us they are ready to move on.


Although their work with TRI is not physically taxing, our horses are subject to quite the difficult job! For most of their lessons, our horses are led by a horse leader but also receiving input from the student and the two side helpers. Think about how you can become overwhelmed when receiving 4 different signals of how to do the same thing! The average therapeutic riding horse can spend about 5 years in a program before reaching burnout. Many of our TRI horses have served much longer. Boo, has been with TRI for 12 years.Our horses tell us they are ready for retirement in a variety of ways – some physical and some behavioral – it depends on the individual horse.

When a horse is ready for retirement, we begin the gigantic task of finding them a qualified home where they can live out their days in pony bliss.If you are interested in providing a forever home for our special friends, please contact TRI’s Program Director, Michele Green at

Patches’ Story

Thanking Patches

There comes a time when TRI must make the difficult decision to retire a horse. In 2013, the decision was made to retire Patches from the TRI arena. Unsound for additional riding, it was very difficult to find her a new home. In addition to her unsoundness, she required additional medications. Any home that she went to would have to keep her on these medications to maintain her quality of life. On the verge of giving up and making the difficult decision to euthanize Patches, a longtime TRI Volunteer agreed to take Patches in, adding her to a small herd of retired horses at his farm where she remains today – healthy, happy, upbeat and thrilled to spend her days playing with her friends, being spoiled and loved. After years of taking the utmost care of our special students, Patches had earned this respite.