Dougie

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A woman in an orange vest, black riding helmet and stability belt wraps her right arm underneath the head of a bay horse with a white blaze. A pair of arms from outside the image frame support the woman's left arm.

"In July 2015, my mom Paula was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Over the years, we have tried dozens of various treatment strategies including but not limited to disease-modifying therapies, neurological-based physical therapy, dietary changes, and switching her medical care team. All of these have had both positive and negative impacts on her overall well-being. However, our most recent treatment attempt in the form of occupational therapy sessions incorporating hippotherapy might just be the most effective in her chronic medical journey thus far.

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For two years I’ve been a volunteer at Reinbow Therapy, LLC, a private occupational therapy practice in Massachusetts that utilizes hippotherapy as a treatment strategy in a patient’s overall plan of care. Throughout my time at Reinbow Therapy, LLC, I have seen a dozen or so different clients. Their progression each week continues to astonish me. Recently, we had an opening in our schedule and I suggested to Reinbow Therapy, LLC’s founder that we should try my mom, Paula, in OT sessions. 

Before her first session, my mom had difficulty walking. Her right leg was dragging behind her. By the time she got off of Dougie, a unicorn disguised as a therapy pony, she was walking with much less difficulty and was able to maintain her strength throughout the day instead of burning out in the early afternoon. 

Dougie is truly a miracle pony, who always takes phenomenal care of his riders, whether they are 2 or 44 years old! Because of Dougie, my mom can now increase her quality of life while sharing in my biggest passion, equine-assisted activities and services (EAAS). Thank you Dougie and Reinbow Therapy, LLC for taking such great care of my mom!" —Diana B.

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