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Horses helping veterans reduce stress, escape isolation in Palm City

Program helps veterans bond with animals
Posted at 7:01 PM, Mar 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-01 19:03:02-05

PALM CITY, Fla. — A longtime dream became a reality for a veteran in Palm City.

Equine Rescue and Adoption Foundation is combining horses, local veterans and their families, helping to get them out of isolation and bring them back into the community.

"I left high school my senior year, and I joined the Air Force. I spent four years in active duty. I did a total of eight years," veteran Harold Trieber said.

Equine Professional Karen Woodbury said the program helps the veterans bond with the animal.

"It's being able to work with the horses in a way and understand their language and communicate with them to build the connection between the horse and human," Woodbury said.

"I am learning how to read what the horse is thinking. I hope," Trieber said.

He said his time with the horses is therapy, helping to reduce the anxiety and stress in his life.

"When you get to be our age, my age. You have a lot of turmoil," Trieber said. "They calm you down. You take all the outside stresses, and they disappear while you're working with the horses. I look forward to Wednesdays and maybe sometime, I will be able to walk out there and get the horse to move where I want it to move."

Woodbury said the time spent with the animals allows veterans to be the person they truly want to be.

"It's being able to get people out from being isolated and bring them back out into the community," Woodbury said.

"I'm still a crazy kid and don't ever be an old person. You might be old in years but just stay young, make a fool of yourself. That's the way to stay young," Trieber said.

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