Program

An experience that has the ability to shift your perspective and possibly change your life.

Saratoga WarHorse provides a 3-day confidential, peer-to-peer, equine-based program to veterans struggling with the effects of PTSD, sleeplessness or suicidal thoughts.  The cost of our program is entirely covered for qualified veterans.  Classes are held in our Saratoga, New York facility where veterans are paired with off-the-track thoroughbreds through a non-traditional program culminating in a life altering experience.  We focus on communicating in the horse’s own language which creates a trusting relationship with the horse and an emotionally empowering experience for the veteran.

Veteran graduates consistently report back to us that what we are doing is working…

SARATOGA WARHORSE ON ESPN
Click below to watch…
Veterans find peace by way of off-the-track Thoroughbreds.  ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi tells the story of the Saratoga WarHorse program.

“Perhaps the most astounding thing about Saratoga WarHorse is how repeatable the program’s results are. Vets from many different backgrounds, of varying personalities and levels of skepticism, have found time and again that indescribable moment that occurs when a connection is made.”

—Daniel Schechtman

VETERAN COMMENTS:

WarHorse Participant, Mike:

Mike

WarHorse Participant, Mike

“I was a little cynical when we first started; what kind of connection am I going to have with a horse? I felt it when that horse was walking up on me, that I had really made a connection and it’s like a light goes on and you feel a little warmth with that horse, you don’t want to let it go. I didn’t want to get out of the ring.”

“It’s something that only people that have been through it are going to be able to explain to another person that has done it.”

“This gives people somebody to reach out to, not only the connection with the horses but the connection with the other people in the classes.”

“You are just a little bit of a different person now then you were before you walked in the round pen, ‘because I know I can make a connection with a noble animal like that and to have the animal make a connection and want to be your friend…’ It’s hard to explain… but it is really a warm feeling.”

WarHorse Participant, Trevor:

Trevor

WarHorse Participant, Trevor

“Whiskey (the horse) had opened inside me an emotion I had never felt before. He told me, in that five minutes in the round pen, that even though we didn’t trust each other in the beginning, that we were not only connected — we were united.”

“I stood in the middle of the round pen and rubbed Whiskey between the eyes and pet his neck lovingly. With tears in my eyes I realized that I wasn’t petting a horse, I was talking with my friend. We talked, completely non-verbally, about how much we trusted each other.”

“You learn something new about yourself. It’s just amazing, indescribable.  I couldn’t really explain how I felt, except that it was one of the greatest days of my life. It’s empowering.”

 

WarHorse Participant, Judith:

judith

WarHorse Participant, Judith

“I used to tell people that I felt a little detached, but I didn’t really feel that detachment until my connection, so now I am more aware and I am actually more about enjoying life. I used to keep people more at a distance…I feel like I am more present in the moment than I have been in a long, long time.”

WarHorse Participant, Michael:

WarHorse Participant, Michael

WarHorse Participant, Michael

“When you finally make that connection, when you actually turn your back and that horse comes over to you and approaches you, because he wants to, you really feel like I’ve done something amazing. And I think it really felt like I opened up a door. I had an apprehension, I had a comfort zone I stepped out of, I went through with it and there was a good positive outcome.”

“If you haven’t done it, then I don’t think you’re really going to understand.”

Adaptive Sports Foundation & Wounded Warrior Project volunteer, Karen Feldman:

WarHorse Participant, Karen Feldman

WarHorse Participant, Karen Feldman

“…my heart was racing when I was doing it, but then when I walked out it was a very peaceful thing when you are actually walking with the horse. There is no fear at all. None.”

WarHorse Participant, James:

War Horse Participant, James

War Horse Participant, James

I have been through talk therapy for a couple of years now and I feel that SWH did more for me than any V.A. doctor has.  The simple idea that a horse could touch me so deeply is amazing.  I was a mess and wanted to quit on the airplane going to NY, but coming home I fell asleep on the flight back, that is a huge step for me.  Thank you for changing my life.
James, March 2013

WarHorse Participant, Chris:

Saratoga WarHorse Participant Chris

Saratoga WarHorse Participant Chris

“Reflecting on my visit to Saratoga WarHorse…I am in control of my life not this PTSD crap… Some unfortunate things have happened these past few years but now its time for greatness…I’m ready. To my shipmates and fellow vets…if you are tired of the darkness and tired of the long sleepless nights…go to saratogawarhorse.com. I can’t really explain what exactly happens when you have your “Connection” with one of these beautiful animals…but I left alot of baggage in that pen. Good luck to you all and I hope you find the peace that was gifted to me…thank you Whiskey…that was my horse, you guys know I’m a vodka man.”

Chris, March 2013