News that makes your ears perk……….

Painted Horses, LLC is proud to welcome Margot Frost Equine Specialist, Ashlee Eikelboom, LMFT, and Katie Baron LCPCc into our herd.  Margot comes to us with a vast passion for Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP), and over 50 years of horse experience.  Ashlee Eikelboom, has worked in a residential facility in which EAP was part of the therapeutic process.  She found the process fascinating and wanted to keep working with people and horses in private practice.  Katie comes to the field with a wealth of experience in animal assisted therapy and dogs (canines), she would like to generalize her skills of helping people with the use of the horse.

Make sure to read their biography under our Staff page.


We are Rearing to go…….

We are offering a one of kind (possibly first in Maine) group for those who want to learn DBT skills. Our DBT through EAP is an open group offered on Wednesday’s from 5-6:30pm.  Contact us to if DBT skills are something you would like to learn. There is a lot of DBT skills used in EAP.  See the Flyer attached.


April and Indaia

April and Indaia

Alli and Shi

His Name Was Prince

As Many of you may already know, we had one of our horses pass away on November 16th 2012.  This was a vast loss to us personally, to all our staff, and clients.  Prince was very active in helping to establish the Painted Horses, LLC program. His way of working with people was inspiring to me and encouraged me to have faith in the horse human connection to the point of building a business around this connection.  In his honor I have made this slide show,  I posted it on our FB page in November and I’m adding it to the blog today.  His loss is still felt today, and in retrospect even in his passing, he continues to exemplify the healing aspects of the horse and human connection. 

Prince will be greatly missed. Words cannot describe how he brought meaning to life, how he cared for others in his horse and human herds. How he offered a safe space in a relationship for those who chose to learn about Love, trust, and fun. Every time his hooves hit the ground he was spreading his good spirit everywhere.

I remember when I met Prince. I was looking for a horse that suits my family. I first saw him in a field of cows; he came trotting to the fence with such intent to interact with us, such curiosity and engagement. He didn’t mind the 3 and 4 year old children running around him and underneath him at times. I knew this was the horse for us, and later I discovered this was the horse for many others as well. We brought Prince to the barn, and the story begins.

I would go to the barn in the mornings he would always whinnie, and I would say Loudly , “Hello my equine friends”, then give Prince a kiss, a hug and remind him, “this all is happening because of you”. Prince and I started to work together with people, providing a place and opportunity for humans to learn and grow. Prince fostered such faith in horse and human relationships that I was honored to work next to him with people of all ages. He seemed to look after people, keep them safe. He also looked after his herd, and seemed to pass his wisdom, love and kindness to the other horses. He set a peaceful tone to the herd, which was felt by all who entered the barn. Prince never missed a day of work in his life no matter how challenging or laborious the task.

Prince was many things to many people someone’s, mother, brother, sister, Nana, someone’s issue, anxiety, depression, eating disorder, control, love or happiness. He was called many names by others and I believe he responded to them all. Interestingly, his names seem to be a representation of his character….. like, Spirit, Old Faithful, Old one, Wise One, Leader, Nana, Ben, Rex, Slurpee.

I often wonder how come a good horse like this left this world. We were all working so well together helping others, and he really made this barn seem so comforting, safe, full of love and life. I was reminded that maybe he left because he knew we could manage on our own having learned from him. I’m honored to have known him, to have shared life with him, and I grieve his loss deeply. Until we meet again my friend.

Sunday Morning At The Hay Pile

Sometimes we just have to acknowledge the special moments we are given in life.  
I just can’t resist sharing these moments, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. 


Welcome to the barn

Painted Horses, LLC welcomes you to the website:)
Take a look around and feel free to email any comments.

We are always interested to hear what you have to say.


What in the Herd is going on……….?

As some of you may know we have had some changes in the heard here at Painted Horses, LLC. During this process I found myself thinking how closely the herd dynamics parallel human lives, and in this particular case, how families may cope with their children growing into adolescents, or adolescents growing into young adults.  The change in the herd started with the ongoing development/maturation of one of our young fillies into a mare. This process has offered many difficulties to the herd, such as horses running through fences, separating horses from each other for periods of time, and even having to switch stalls.


It has been challenging, at times, to watch this filly mature as she has had various events and herd dynamics that have affected her development within the herd. To begin with, she has had to cope with the herds’ expectations of her. In her situation, she is the only large mare horse out of 4 large horses. Generally, horses in the wild have a lead mare for each herd. The herd expects this lead mare to fulfill certain roles of leadership orienting around aspects of safety, nurturing, and setting guidelines to define appropriate horse behavior for the herd. Any colt or fillies in the herd are expected to heed the guidelines set by the lead mare, if not, the lead mare will encourage following the guideline through discipline of the colt or filly. Herd expectations can seem overwhelming to any colt or filly being raised in any herd. Our young mare has not had the exposure to a lead mare in a herd, as the fillies’ mother was returned to her previous owner.  Consequently, she has no model to guide her, and show her how to be a lead mare. Without a model to guide her, she is left to essentially guess what is expected of her. Guessing at how to be a lead mare has led the herd through many trying, and at times, risky events. 


One particular dynamic emerged with two events of breaking fences. Our young mare started to exert her power, challenging the other larger geldings through intimidating looks, nips, and kicks. She seemed almost giddy at times with her energy, and constant movement of immature behavior. It seemed as if her behavior was trying the patience of all herd members. Finally our senior gelding seemed to have enough of her behavior, and began to attempt to discipline the filly. In his efforts she became frightened, and on two occasions ran through fences.  It seemed as if she thought she was prepared to exert her power, but when it came down to it she was really fearful of having all that responsibility. Thankfully, she and the other horses were not hurt. Now separation had to occur between the two horses, with plans of re-uniting both of them once their emotions calmed, and behavior changed.   


Lastly, another herd dynamic affecting our young mare oriented from peer pressure, and association. This mare happens to have been born around the same time as one of our miniature horses. Due to kinship she has developed with the miniature mare she has seemed to identify herself with the miniature horse group, or herd. I like to say the miniature horses seem to be “her posse”, which is unfortunate, but true. This large horse mare has started to behave like a miniature horse, and seems to draw her courage from her formed identity with this group of horses, rather than the larger horse herd who is expecting her mature leadership. In order to change this dynamic, we separated her from her mini friends at times throughout the day; however, this did not seem to work as she would just stand by the gate of the paddock they were in.  Next we noticed her stall was next to her mini friend’s stall, so we changed her to be next to the big horses.  I also let her and all the big horses out to graze and eat their hay bale together before allowing the miniature horses out with the rest of the herd.  So far these small changes seem to be helping. 


  Overtime, the herd has been able to adapt to changes, and re-adjust, but it has been a trying experience.   I find a process like this similar to what I witness when working with adolescents, and their families. In either situation much consideration is given to paying attention to the adolescent behavior, working on modeling the behavior expected in the family, looking at how peer pressure affects the adolescent, identifying times in which to work on relationship building, engaging in problem solving, with much solution focused thinking. Have you ever felt this way in your herd?  Feel free to share.

Happy Holidays 2011

Happy Hollidays

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