Local News

Texas Therapy Horses Stolen and Later Returned Injured

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On Sunday night, KCBD reports that five men (including two suspected minors) snuck into Refuge Services’ 40-acre property and took five of their therapy horses on a ride around town. Once a photo was posted on social media showing the horses at a Whataburger eight miles away, authorities were able to intervene. Unfortunately, even though the horses were safe, they weren’t without injury from the journey.

This is a financial and emotional blow to Refuge Services, Inc. They provide therapy for children and adults to expand their minds and spirit. They offer hippotherapy (uses a horse’s movement as guidance for physical therapy), therapeutic riding (gives the rider a bond with the horse and a sense of control), equine-assisted psychotherapy (utilizes a horse to open up the rider’s feelings) and veteran services (service projects and training courses for veterans).

Several of the horses that were taken will not be able to provide these programs for a while until they are healed. Some are very sore and some even have split hooves from walking so far on the concrete.

“I really don’t think the boys had any idea of the impact this would have for us, and for these horses, and how many different lives they’re negatively impacting by the choices they made just to have a joyride, as they would say,” Refuge Services director Patti Mandrell regrettably told KCBD.