TAMPA, Fla. — Mary Rose Gullet founded Honey’s Mini Therapy Adventures in 2018 to help expand equine therapy.

It’s a comfort that she has experienced firsthand.

What You Need To Know

  • Mary Rose Gullet founded Honey's Mini Therapy Adventures in 2018

  • Honey's helps at hospitals, nursing homes, schools, behavioral facilities

  • The visits leave a positive impact on patients and staff

  • Gullet plans to become a licensed therapist and expand equine therapy

“Equine therapy is something that helped me heal as a child and an adolescent and through my teen years,” Gullet said.

Gullet started the nonprofit organization with one horse named Honey.

She now has about a dozen: some of them stay on her farm in Webster. The 34-year-old says they continue to help her heal.

“They offer a very empathetic space, so horses meet us where we are.” Gullet said. “They offer a space that’s non-judgmental.”

Gullet is expanding that safe space, taking the horses to hospitals, nursing homes, schools, behavioral facilities.

Honey and another mini horse named Rocket recently visited Tampa General Hospital’s (TGH) oncology floor.

“This is like the best thing that has happened in the last ten days,” said Jen Menco, who was the first patient of the day to meet the horses.

The flight attendant, who says she has no family in the area, got emotional during the visit.

“Love, caring, but I think most of all, the company, you feel like you’re not alone and they’re so calm,” said Menco.

A calm this patient appreciates.

“Thank you for making someone smile and make me forget,” said Menco to Gullet.

“It’s why we keep doing it truthfully,” said Gullet. “I love horses the same way you love horses, and they do give us that space that I feel like humans just don’t get that we need, they really can connect with us.”

Gullet’s mission for Honey’s Mini Horse Therapy Adventures is to keep making those connections.

“Less stress, less anxiety,” said Gullet of the benefits of equine therapy. “The smiles that you see, it really makes an impact.”

Not only do the horses have an impact on patients, it seems to help medical staff as well.

“The horses give our patients and our staff a lot of joy and also support and it also brightens our day,” said Tahiana Acosta, a registered nurse of the boost the visits give team members at TGH.

Gullet said she hopes to brighten more days.

She recently got her master’s degree in social work. She plans to become a licensed therapist and expand equine therapy.

“It’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done in my whole life,” said Gullet.