According to Yalom (1995) “all individuals seeking assistance from a mental health professional have in common two paramount difficulties: (1) establishing and maintaining meaningful interpersonal relationships, and (2) maintain a sense of personal worth (self-esteem)”

* Build relationship skills
* Channel risk taking impulses
* Develop trust
* Gain confidence
* Gain effective coping skills
* Gain problem solving skills
* Gain self-awareness
* Gain self-esteem
* Give and receive needed affection
* Learn basic horsemanship skills
* Learn body language
* Learn boundaries
* Learn respect for self & others
* Learn self-control
* Overcome fears
* Promote a feeling of achievement
* Promote empowerment
* Promote healthy touch
* Reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation
* Team work

Children as well as adults sometimes have unhealthy views of themselves. Horses are often referred to as the “dolphins of the prairies” and can be used effectively in therapy as a tool to help build healthy relationships.

One of the main goals of this type of therapy is to promote learning healthy ways of developing and maintaining relationships. These newly learned relationship skills then are transferred over into healthy relationships with others.