Equine Assisted Mental Health

For ages 6+ in central Oregon

Healing Reins Therapeutic Riding Center provides mental health services that include horses and the farm environment to ages 6+ in Central Oregon.

Equine Assisted Mental Health (EAMH) is a holistic, experiential and highly specialized form of therapy that involves working in collaboration with a horse, a therapist, and an equine specialist. This groundbreaking model is being used globally as a dynamic, powerful tool in mental health therapy.

Including horses in mental health counseling, psychotherapy, or social work is emerging as an effective experiential treatment technique. Clients get “outside of four walls” and experience the connection between themselves, horses, and the natural world.

Horses are uniquely suited to this kind of therapy because they are intuitive and will physically react to behavior patterns and cues that people often miss. This creates a place for the therapist and client to connect on a deeper level and address issues that might otherwise go unnoticed in a traditional office setting.

The horse’s sensitivity to subtle changes in their environment makes them perfect partners for those seeking to improve their mental health. Due to their sensitivity, horses react and respond to people differently based upon the person’s emotional state, providing the client and the mental health professional with information regarding the client’s moods and changes within those moods. If a client arrives anxious the horse will act and respond one way. If the client is able to reduce his or her anxiety, the horse’s behaviors will also change. This provides a plethora of information and skill building opportunities for both the client and the mental health professional.

EAMH at Healing Reins

At Healing Reins, mental health professionals use equine-assisted mental health and farm-based activities as therapeutic techniques to address a wide range of goals and client needs. Clients that can benefit from this type of counseling include adults, teens, children, families, veterans, service members and more. 

  • Specifically targets ages 6 and up with mental and emotional health matters, stemming from traumatic life events, chemical imbalances, cognitive disorders, and a wide range of additional mental and emotional health distresses.
  • Creates a safe space Outside the 4-walls of a traditional clinical therapy setting for the client and therapist to interact with one another by engaging in activity with a horse during their therapy session.
  • The therapist partners with the horse to help the individual process their emotions, thoughts and reactions.

Studies show that Equine Assisted Mental Health has been helpful for patients in the following areas: assertiveness, emotional awareness, empathy, stress tolerance, flexibility, impulse control, problem-solving skills, self-actualization, independence, self-regard, social responsibility, interpersonal relationships, grief/loss, cognitive disability, ADD/ADHD, autism, personality disorders, anxiety/depression, mood disorders, PTSD, and emotional/physical trauma.

Healing Reins’ Facility: Our ADA-approved facility and Mental Health clinic is equipped with 2 on-site private mental health studios with beautiful views of Mt. Bachelor and the Oregon Cascade range. Professionally licensed Therapists and Equine Specialists are supported by specially selected program horses to deliver year-round services.

Interested in our EAMH Services– Please Complete the Interest Form Here or Call 541-382-9410 extension #105 for Equine Assisted Mental Health Service Inquiries or email Lisa Bradley, LPC, R-DMT, Clinical Manager at Lisab@healingreins.org. Please do not share confidential information in the email.

 All clients are entitled to a Good Faith Estimate in accordance with the No Surprises Act.

Potential Client Interest Form

EAMH Clinical Team at Healing Reins

Lisa Bradley :: Equine Assisted Mental Health Clinical Manager LPC, R-DMT

Licensed Professional Counselor
Registered Dance/Movement Therapist

After completing an internship integrating Dance/Movement Therapy (DMT) and Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP), Lisa obtained a Masters of Arts in Somatic Counseling Psychology from Naropa University in December 2011. Since receiving her credentials, Lisa has begun a private, somatic psychotherapy practice, inviting teens and adults to experience the therapeutic value of a body-based perspective in therapy, with and without the co-facilitation of horses. Over the past 12 years, Lisa has been supporting individuals who are experiencing grief and loss, low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, self-harming behaviors, suicidal ideation, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and more. Lisa is dedicated to providing a practice with a compassionate, multi-culturally sensitive approach. She is invested in continuing her education in equine and somatic therapy practices, and is currently working as the Clinical Manager of the Equine Assisted Mental Health Clinic at Healing Reins Therapeutic Riding Center. She is awed by the healing power of both Dance/Movement Therapy and Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy from personal experience and professional training, and thus is passionate about providing these therapeutic modalities for others in a journey towards health.

Debbie Taylor :: Equine Assisted Mental Health LPC

Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)

Debbie is a licensed professional counselor (LPC) specializing in anxiety, depression, anger, grief, relationship issues and PTSD. She received her undergraduate degree at the University of California, Santa Barbara and her Masters of Counseling at Oregon State University, Cascades. Debbie began as a counselor in the middle and high schools in Bend providing mental health to teens and families and has a passion for helping people function together in a way that is happy and healthy for all involved.

Growing up around horses in California Debbie understands the unique healing qualities that horses can provide through connection and engagement. Horses allow us to discover new learning opportunities and increase our personal growth outside of a traditional office setting. She utilizes a strength-based approach integrating empathy and acceptance to help clients overcome difficult stressors and overwhelming emotions. Debbie has received training with Star Behavioral Health Providers (SBHP) Tier 1, 2, 3 to work as a civilian professional with military awareness. Debbie is trained in EMDR and dedicated to providing support through CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS), Solution Focused Therapy and Mindfulness. Together Debbie and her clients build skills to navigate life’s complexities and increase motivation.

When not at the barn Debbie enjoys spending time with her family, wandering around local hiking trails, listening to music and exploring adventures through books.

Addie Rassier :: Equine Assisted Mental Health LMFT

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)

Addie has been providing clinical services in many diverse locations and settings since 2007. She has focused on supporting children, teens and adults impacted by trauma, anxiety, and depression. Currently she is completing the Equine Assisted Mental Health certification at University of Denver’s School of Human Animal Connection to support her clinical understanding of the added benefits of equine interaction in a therapeutic setting.

Native to Oregon, Addie has been lucky to have incorporated horses into her life and looks for new opportunities to bring horses and people together.

Ilana Silver :: Clinical Social Worker Associate (CSWA)

Clinical Social Worker Associate (CSWA); Masters in Social Work (MSW)

Ilana received her Master’s in Social Work from Smith College School for Social Work in 2021 while concurrently completing the Equine Assisted Mental Health Practitioner certificate program through the University of Denver’s Institute for Human-Animal Connection. Ilana draws from a psychodynamic background while incorporating Motivational Interviewing, Narrative Therapy, CBT, EMDR, and mindfulness to support adults, teens, and children impacted by anxiety, depression, trauma, grief and loss.

Ilana has had a love of horses for as long as she can remember, and spent much of her adolescence exploring the Maine woods on the back of a rascally pony. When she began working as a horseback trail guide she found a newfound passion for connecting others to horses and the natural world; this became her foundation for incorporating horses into mental health treatment.

Meet our Healing
Herd of Horses

The equine members of our team are hugely important to us and are chosen very carefully. The ideal therapy horse is sound and unflappable, with a been-there-done-that attitude. Our herd members have had careers in dressage, high school equestrian teams, trail riding, ranch work, and more. Miles and experience add up to the quiet, assured horses our participants need.

Meet Them