What You Need To Know
- Old Friends Farm partnered with Ashton Grove Senior Living to bring horses to residents
- Tom Emerson, Ashton Grove Senior Living resident’s favorite horse named Millie
- Emerson and many other residents consider the horses therapeutic
- Old Friends Farm needed more space for the retired race horses and Ashton Grove Senior Living has the extra space and barn
“In the beginning I didn't know quite how this would work, I thought, how does the horse know where the carrot is and my hand begins. So far it's all worked out,” Tom Emerson, a resident at Ashton Grove Senior Living said.
Emerson has made a special connection with some four legged residents, with Millie being one of his favorites.
“To me they're just a wonderful addition to that, I had pets before I moved here but my last cat died shortly before I moved here. Now I can't bring Millie into the living room, but she's still a wonderful creature and I love her,” Emerson said.
Davonna Saier, Executive Director says their partnership with Old Friends Farm has helped retired race horses find a new home and allows for her residents to make some new friends.
“The fact that we can be a part of making them have their best life, and it's just so cool that retired people and retired horses all on one beautiful property has just really been a neat thing to watch,” Saier said.
Emerson said he considers the horses therapeutic, and they have even helped him through some of his difficult days.
”They're wonderful creatures, I just love them and to me they're therapeutic. If I feel down, I go down and see one of the horses or all the horses in there. They're just great,” Emerson said.
With the pandemic and no visitors over the last few months, Saier said residents have been able to make connections with the horses, and she looks forward to things becoming normal.
“Seeing the reunions and seeing people be able to come in and visit like normal and it's just been a really wonderful thing. And at the end of the day I'm just very grateful for the residents here whether they have two legs or four,” Saier said.
Ashton Grove Senior Living Center hopes to have around thirty horses within the next couple of months.