Katie Berman from Washington grew up working with rescue horses. When she was 12 years old, one horse came into her life that changed the way she viewed horsemanship. This particular horse was not responding to any of the "typical" methods of training, and she was not ready to trust humans yet. Since traditional methods were not working, Katie decided to use the idea of allowing the horse to learn FREEly, and make their own choices. Katie admits that she was really hesistant, and scared that her horse would run away when she took off the ropes. After years of patience and practicing the FREEDOM technique, Katie and her once-fearful horse had devloped trust and a friendship that couldn't be broken.
Since then, Katie's view on working with rescue horses has changed forever. Katie is the founder and trainer at Kataluna Horse Rescue and Kataluna Horsemanship. Kataluna is a small organization dedicated towards helping slaughter bound horses and rescuing them from local feedlot and auction yards. At Kataluna Horsemanship, their team helps horses who have endured that physical and emotional trauma and bring them into our ranch to help them heal and rehabilitate through giving them the freedom of choice.
There is a large slaughter industry for equines, which is why horse rescues are so crucial. Katie's organization is passionate about giving horses the option to learn to trust humans again, and give them a second chance at life. "We vow to help any animal reaching out for help, however focus specifically on freedom from feedlots for horses awaiting their last days before shipping to Mexico or Canada for meat consumption purposes."
At Kataluna, not only do they put in countless hours of work, effort, and love toward rescuing horses, they also offer lessons. They offer a variety of lesson options including liberty, riding, basic ground manners, trick training, and rehabilitation for neglected horses. Their lessons are customized toward the individual and their needs, as well as the needs of their horse. The goal of their training is to create a deeper connection between the horse and human and increases confidence and self-esteem.
Organizations like Kataluna Horsemanship are making a huge difference in the lives of horses across the country. In order to continue their operations, they rely heavily on finances. The cost to bail one horse from a feedlot ranges anywhere from $250-$900. Other expenses include vet care and feed for their horses. Katie states, "We cant save every life but it all starts with ONE. It all starts with YOU."
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