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Lofty's Story

Whangarei Group Riding for the Disabled has recently purchased a 17.3hh Gisborne- bred gelding as one of their newest RDA Horses.

Whangarei Group RDA’s Sue Neilson says that the 18 year old Horse, named Lofty due to his massive size, has been used for hunting for most of his life and was not initially in a poor condition.

“When we got him he was extremely skinny and undernourished.  For the past month we have been feeding him hard feed, hay and as much grass as he can eat, and now he is unrecognisable.”

Sue says that Lofty will be introduced into the Group’s programme as a Horse for teenagers with anger issues, anxiety, depression who can ride independently.

“At the end of last year we had to put off quite a few of these Riders, as they are between 13 and 18 and are too tall for any of our other Horses.

It was very disappointing as they were making great progress, but when our big Clydesdale Cross sadly passed away we were left with no Horse suitable for these Riders.”

Sue says that Lofty is a ‘gentle giant’, with Volunteers and Riders alike having all fallen in love with him.

Lofty is just one of over 500 specially selected and trained RDA Horses, who are key components in the 80,000 therapeutic riding sessions held each year for Riders at RDA Groups across New Zealand.

Find out more about Whangarei Group RDA by going to their Facebook page.

Read more of our RDA Horse Stories



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