A lifetime horse person, I began my formal dressage education in 1984.I embraced it whole heartedly. By working with many different horses of various breeds and ages I learned a great deal. I bought, trained, sold, and took horses in training here at my ranch in Sonoma County. My favorite competition horse was the very quirky and super talented Hanoverian gelding, Wendespiel (Chewy), whom I purchased as a 4 year old. He became USDF Horse of the Year in 1991. The next year he was 4th in the USDF Western Region at Prix St. George. We trained through Grand Prix. It was phenomenal to have worked with him at that level.
He was a consummate showman with a huge ego. A real powerhouse, he gave 150% of himself at all times. It was his pleasure to strut his stuff. Unfortunately he incurred a shattered pastern while bucking in the turn out. When I lost him, I lost all desire to compete again.
My passion for working at liberty came to the forefront at that time. The beautiful connection that can be developed through the freedom it is based on, is what allowed Chewy to retain his full expression and yet willingly accept my requests in performance.
The focus of true liberty work, is to draw out the horses natural instincts and desire to bond. When based on the way horses communicate with each other in the wild, there is the potential to unlock the barriers between horse and human. By engaging the horse, instead of pursuing him until he gives in, a desire to interact and perform is created.
The path I have taken is one of the heart. It is not unique to me. It is, I believe, what we all long for at the deepest level. So often the horses that are brought to my ranch for training have a troubled past. They might not even have been mistreated as we see it. However they may have experienced it as such. I offer to them an opportunity to step into a mutually desired connection. One where they truly have a say in the matter.
It is so gratifying to see the life return to their eyes as fear and resentment dissolve. Sharing this path with people who are drawn to it is such an honor. Aligning the hearts of horses and humans is my enduring passion.
I have been fortunate to have the love and support of Neal, my husband and best friend of over 40 years. Through this work, I have met some of the very finest friends one could hope for, horses and humans!
Creating a connection to the very heart of the horse. ♥