Harnessing the Power of Equine Assisted Counseling: Adding Animal Assisted Therapy to Your Practice, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Harnessing the Power of Equine Assisted Counseling

Adding Animal Assisted Therapy to Your Practice, 1st Edition

Edited by Kay Sudekum Trotter


308 pages | 6 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2011-12-12
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This book will help licensed professional counselors incorporate Equine Assisted Counseling (EAC) into their practices, even those who have little prior experience working with horses. It provides a strong research foundation for understanding the efficacy of equine assisted interventions and the potentially powerful impact that a horse can have in creating a new counseling dynamic. Chapters address using horses to help clients dealing with various traumas and abuse, anxiety, depression, atypical behaviors, and social skills and communication issues. Additionally, a chapter by the internationally renowned "horse whisperer" Pat Parelli offers a look at EAC from the horse’s point of view and demonstrates developing a relationship with a therapy horse in a positive, safe, and respectful manner. Counselors will find this a valuable resource for understanding and utilizing EAC as a new resource in their own practices, as will students seeking to learn about this innovative approach.


"Trotter has compiled a tremendous resource for mental health professionals interested in adding equine assisted counseling to their existing practice. I am excited and impressed by the wisdom of the many contributors she has included and I look forward to all that this field is becoming." - Leif Hallberg, MA, LCPC, Private Practice, Bozeman, Montana

"This book is a highly valuable resource for counselors who work with horses. It is well written and organized and provides useful, practical, and very interesting information." - Cynthia Chandler, EdD, Professor of Counseling and Director, Center for Animal Assisted Therapy, University of North Texas

"This book needs to be on the shelf of every EAT and AAT practitioner and in the hands of instructors and students as well. I personally loved the case studies which add an enjoyable narrative. Two thumbs up and five stars! I highly recommend it!" - Linda Nebbe PhD, LMHC, Assistant Professor of Counseling, University of Northern Iowa, and AAT Practitioner

Table of Contents

Trotter, Part I: Equine Assisted Interventions in Mental Health. Defining Equine Assisted Interventions. Equine Assisted Interventions in Mental Health. Animal Assisted Therapy. Equine Assisted Counseling. Theoretical Foundations of Equine Assisted Counseling. Therapeutic Implications for Conducting Counseling Outdoors. Parelli, Part II: Looking at Equine Assisted Counseling from the Horses’ Perspective. Part III: Techniques that Address Trauma. Coleman, Reclaiming Boundaries through Equine Assisted Counseling. DePrekel, Neznik, Equine Assisted Group Therapy: Treating Sexual Trauma. Nussen, The Magic Room. Faa-Thompson, "Safe Touch": Using Horses to Teach Sexually Abused Clients to Value Their Bodies and Themselves. DePrekel, Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy for the Treatment of Trauma. Part IV: Techniques that Explore Anxiety and Depression. Schneider, Healing through Horses – Equine Assisted Counseling: No Place to Hide. Weston-Thompson, Therapeutic Trail Riding for Children and Adults with ADHD and Anxiety Disorders. Eller, Exposed Anxiety with Equine Assisted Counseling. Welsch, The Tellington Method ®: A Technique for Equine Assisted Counseling. Nicholas, Conflict Resolution: The Crosswalk. Part V: Techniques that Speak to Atypical Behaviors. Jeffers, Houser, Houser, Heart-to-Heart Rainbow: An Imagery Experience to Facilitate Relationship Development. Faa-Thompson, You Gotta Crack a Few Eggs. Edwards, Treatment of Autism and Attachment with Interpersonal Equine Therapy. Part VI: Techniques that Focus on Social Skills and Communication. Kane, Out of the Starting Gate: An Approach to Equine Assisted Activities. Tinsley, Jedlicka, Equine Assisted Counseling with Deaf Families. Eller, Social Skills and Communication Shaped by Equine Baseball. Bond, Central Issues. Trotter, Labeling: Using Equine Anatomy to Explore Labeling Stigma. McKissock, Stanton, The Utilization of Mythical Themes to Elicit Socially Appropriate Behavior Skills. Trotter, Horse n Rider. Part VII: Techniques that Improve Self-esteem and Self-worth. P. Weston Westerman, Hargreaves, D. Westerman, Verge, Improvement of Self-efficacy and Social Skills through Participation in "Great and Small," a Therapeutic Horseback Riding Program. Thompson, Using Equine Assisted Counseling with Psychotherapists in a Group Setting. Louhi-Lehtiö, Easel ®: Equine Assisted Social Emotional Learning. Looman, Grounded Strategies that Improve Self-efficacy. Bond, Soft Eyes. Trotter, Saddle Up.

About the Editor

Kay Sudekam Trotter, PhD, is the Founder of Equine Partners in Counseling (EPIC), a structure to develop resources for counselors to utilize in incorporating equine assisted counseling into more traditional counseling modalities. She is also President of Counseling Services PLLC in Flower Mound, Texas.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / Counseling