One of Asheville Academy’s greatest strengths is our uniquely effective equine and animal therapy program.
With our expansive campus we are able to have all sorts of animals right on campus– miniature horse, pig, kittens, chickens, goats, and all kinds of dogs, just to name a few of our ever-changing group of therapeutic animals.
Equine and animal therapy helps our girls develop responsibility and self-reflection, as well as provide motivation for them to take the therapy process seriously. Furthermore, it also helps students be more aware, nurturing, and caring for others. Horses are very sensitive to communication, both verbal and non-verbal, meaning they act as a powerful mirror that helps to demonstrate the importance of controlling our emotions.
Through nurturing and caring for the animals, our girls develop a sense of pride and responsibility, but more importantly, a deep sense of connection and unconditional love that translates to other relationships.
Our campus is filled with animals of all sorts. Strolling across our rural campus, one might see horses grazing in the meadows, free-roaming goats that insist on being petted, and Ruby Sue, our beloved pot-bellied pig who loves to be cuddled. You may even run into a few chickens, bunnies, or one of our friendly dogs like Roger.
Many students find the opportunity to interact with horses and other therapy animals to be the most fun and rewarding component of their time at Asheville Academy. Each of these animals adds something unique and special to the animal therapy program, and are beloved by our students.
Equine therapy can provide powerful emotional feedback to our students. More than just a friendly face, horses are also very responsive to the posture and emotional state of humans, which can cause her to open up about her troubles by viewing them through the lens of the horse’s response.
If one of our girls is having a particularly difficult day, her therapist might suggest they walk to the on-campus stables. Within a few minutes, they’ll find themselves interacting with the horses, who will brighten her day.