Therapy Horse of the Week: Bullet

Bullet the Therapy Horse
Bullet found comfort from a determined boy named Nolan with his persistent grooming. Photo courtesy of Lyonheart Corral.

It’s unclear who needs therapy more, Bullet, or the children who come to the farm to receive help with learning and social-emotional skills. Bullet spent most of his life performing and working. He rarely received love, in fact his only association with grooming was in conjunction with working. And he had never experienced the delight of children.

When he came to the LyonHeart Corral, he didn’t quite know what to think. Once ignored, it was quite disconcerting to receive love and attention from children. One participant, Nolan, connected with Bullet recently.

Read More: [How a Therapy Horse Helped a Stroke Survivor Heal]

Read More: [Therapy Horse of the Week: Bambi]

Most children are intimidated by Bullet’s stature and stand-offish demeanor. He is typically resistant to their attempts to groom him. But Nolan marched right up to Bullet with a brush in his hand and began to stroke his body.

Nolan confidently expected that Bullet would enjoy this treatment, having no idea that other children avoid him because of his size. As Nolan experimented with various grooming tools, everyone (except Nolan) was taken by surprise when Bullet didn’t move. He didn’t walk away. He didn’t pin his ears back to indicate being uncomfortable. Bullet fell asleep.

For the rest of the program the two were inseparable. Nolan received from Bullet the calm presence and attention he was craving. The stability of the horse gave him a new strength of mind to grow. A few weeks after the program, Bullet received a letter in the mail. It was from Nolan. “Hey Bullet, I will always be in your heart.” – Nolan

– N. Lyon

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