What makes Saddle Up! Ranch truly unique is that we work with both animals and people. Many of our animals are rescued. In the last year alone Saddle Up! Ranch has saved nine horses from euthanasia, and 25 in total. We retrain horses, essentially, by teaching the horse to trust rather than act through fear.
Each horse is very different and the time taken with each horse has varied from months to years. Saddle Up! Ranch has a core group of Therapy Horses with the rest of the herd being rehabilitated or retrained. Read a little about our horses’ histories, personalities and what makes them individual!
As well as horses we also have a number of other animals at the ranch including alpaca, sheep, chickens and goats!
We have a specialised K9 team too that play an essential part of our education programme.
Deserves his place as highest ranking; Big Red is a gentle leader and teacher to the young horses as well as being a lucky horse to have been owned by humans with empathy. He was diasgnosed with a joint issue meaning he could no longer compete and has come to the charity because he is very people orientated and being a young horse still needs stimulation which he recieves through clicker training and gentle exercise.
Before & after pictures to show how even gentle exercise can tighten the core and increase muscle mass.
Ralph is currently on long term loan providing therapy to a lady in Angus
Heather has come from a much loved home where daughter was going to university. She is in semi-retirement and we are very pleased to have such a wonderful, kind horse here. Not only does she help
train the young riders, she also acts as Grandma to our youngsters helping them to learn boundaries!
You can learn more about Heather in our Natural Barefoot Works page, because she is a good example of what long term shoeing can do to hooves.
Heather is currently on loan up north providing therapy for a young man
Harmony has a beautiful nature and has had a loving past. She has now retired from being a brood mare and will be an up and coming star in our workshops where people can learn about behaviour and body language.
This stunning boy was gifted to the charity. He was described as "not feeling right" and a "little odd" under saddle. With a generic passport and no information about his breeding we went through
everything slowly with him to ensure it was not a physical problem. It was clear Red had a lot of muscle soreness and stress so, to help with this he underwent a good number of shaiatsu treatments
When we saw changes in Red such as his stress responses not as high and muscles less tender to the touch, we were able to get him back into some light work. Upon watching his movement we were able to see why he felt "odd" or "not right" under saddle... it was clear he had an extra gait! Standardbred! With further work and time Red has came into his own and is a pleasure to have at the ranch.
Tonto was originally bought as a youngster by one of our loyal volunteers. But he proved quite a handful so has come to Saddle Up to receive long term training, to allow him to mature at his
He is fun loving and described by those that know him as puppy like, very much wanting to be part of whatever is going on. He is trick trained and also starting his bridleless training, and although not quite sensible for novices to ride yet he can often be seen as a demo horse at our workshops.
This cheeky little chap is Ranger. He is often mistaken for a shetland pony but he is infact a miniture horse! Ranger loves people, hugs and all the attention. He can often be seen in and around the yard with all the animals and taking part in clicker training sessions.
Gracie came to us as a youngster. Even though she was young we were able to tell she was a cheeky little mare and liked to have an opinion on all things! We went through of the all ground work
exercises and did some light rides with her, she was then later adopted. Unfortunately, due to a change of circumstances Gracie ended up coming back to us. When she came back a lot of time was spent
getting her feet back into better shape, her weight to a more acceptable state and her stiff back muscles loosened off.
Even with her sassy attitude she is a sweet heart and is a favourite among some of the volunteers.
From left to right: Butch, Brianna, Buck, Baby, Bandit
Todi is a rare breed - a swiss valais blacknose. The breed is known for being gentle and docile. We call Todi the friendlist sheep in the world as he adores attention and fuss. Todi is bringing Caspers confidence on and is a great friend to him.
Volunteers always welcome to come brush Todi!
Casper is a deaf alpaca who was rejected by his original herd. With us he gets on well with Todi our resident ram. He knows hand signals and loves his treats.
This girl is a red deer - the largest species of deer in Britain. She was born in captivity and was wild in behaviour when she first came to us. Through clicker training she is now eating from the hand and allowing us to touch and groom her and you can take her for a walk