At the heart of the Ranch is our horses. Horses are what often draw participants to the Ranch, they're who God uses to help break down barriers very quickly to allow hope to enter a hurting heart. Horse Sponsorship is the primary way we are able to fund the work done at the Ranch, continuing to offer mentor sessions completley free-of-charge to all who come.
DOB: Unknown, Arrived: 3/12/2019 (Rescue)
now session horse and permanent Ranch resident.
Current Sponsors: (additional sponsors needed!)
Amber Stevenson, Sira Farris, Lauren Hart, Gwen Amorim
Joseph, formerly hip #1790 was rescued from an auction house in Middle Tennessee. He was found standing in a pen with about 100 other horses who all awaited the same fate: to be purchased by the highest bidder with no regard to their welfare, condition, or destiny (many from this particular auction of which end up at feedlots and in slaughter trucks). Having researched well how to rescue from this auction without adding money into the kill buyer's hands, our volunteers were able to pull him on the night of March 12, 2019. He is a middle-aged Saddlebred gelding (though he was listed as a mare at the auction!).
The instant he walked out of the auction house he let out a deep sigh, as if knowing he had ended up in caring hands. He loaded onto the trailer, and slept most of the drive back to the Ranch.
He was evaluated by our vet: infested with parasites, needing to gain 300lbs, lacking basic maintenance care by his previous owner, and had quite a road of recovery ahead so a plan for his rehabilitation was made.
After 3 months of Rehabilitation, he officially joined the horses that can be ridden by participants. His engaging personality that beckons each visitor with a friendly nicker. His outgoing personality and workmanlike nature under saddle make him the perfect session horse.
READ JOSEPH'S STORY HERE: "Joseph's Journey"
DOB: 5-22-1999, Arrived: has been with us since the beginning!
Breed: Anglo Arabian (Arabian x Thoroughbred)
Sponsor: Fully Sponsored since January 2017
by The Jaeckle Centre -
Boston is one of those once-in-a-lifetime horses who has a willingness to try anything. He's stubborn, strong willed, and has a lot of personality with an opinion about everything. In talking with a string of several previous trainers he had, he was characterizid as “mean” “uncontrollable” “crazy” and “worthless”, Carissa purchased him in 2009 and through patience, trust, and the guidance of some amazing horsewomen after channeling that energy into Eventing and Show Jumping for a several years, Boston is now a most trusted session horse.
Boston has a knack for using his stubbornness to help teach everyone about persistence and the reward it produces when combined with putting another's best interests first.
His favorite treat is either an apple bran muffin or a poweraid slush. He loves galloping across an open field, and knows how to bow and give kisses for cookies.
DOB: 2002, Arrived: 3/29/2016
Breed: Appendix (Quarter Horse x Thoroughbred)
Fully Sponsored since April 2017 by Pascal and Michelle Jouvence
Dancer spent most of his life in a loving home with Zoey Druckenmiller. As a part of a lesson program, he was relied on to help many different people learn the ropes of riding and helped give them the confidence they needed to move up to other more challenging horses. Zoey told us that his life hasn’t always been great and that when she got him there was a process of bringing him back to full health. She purchased him from a "horse trader" (someone who buys horses really cheap and then resells them very quickly to unsuspecting people for profit without regard to the horse’s needs). He was underweight and had a painful skin infection all over his back called “rain rot”. She gave him the care and love he needed and he thrived! Dancer joins Freedom Reigns Ranch as a session horse who truly enjoys being loved on by many different people, so we know he will thrive at the Ranch!
At the Ranch, Dancer has become a star session horse! He truly loves his job and he seems to know it's his responsibility to ensure participants feel safe and confident and he is so gentle with them. He is quite vocal, always nickering when someone comes to greet him, and loves his bath time.
DOB: 2007, Arrived: 11/16/16
Breed: Unknown (believed to be QHxTWH)
Peppy Butler, The Hardeman Family
Abandoned in a small outdoor dog pen for over a month when his owner became addicted to drugs, Freedom (named by participants) was rescued from his situation when the horse community stepped in to save him. His rescuing family took him in and then realized that, despite the obstacles of fear and trust he would have to work through, he would be a perfect fit for Freedom Reigns.
When he first got to the Ranch he was afraid of small spaces, a stick (crop/whip), and very over-reactive to any movement but through the use of natural horsemanship techniques and constant and consistent work, he has become much more trusting and is engaging in the things that used to scare him.
He is a favorite of participants, especially for those dealing with anxiety and fear in their own life. Working with Freedom requires very controlled and quiet movement for him to feel most confident and he visibly shows physical changes when participants take active measures to relax themselves. His favorite thing is to simply have his head held next to someones chest, and he loves being fed treats.
DOB: 5-10-1999, Arrived: 5/16/2016
Breed: Welch Cobb
Current Sponsors: Pamela and Greg Morrow, Claire Tyner-White, Jessica Blevins, Marlena Jenkins, Amy Springer
Pogo came from the Brandt family, who love him dearly. He had his own little girl and together they showed in the discipline of Eventing: It’s a fun and competitive equine sport that demands a horse be a well rounded individual. He was well cared for but had a bit of a mischievous streak and one day ended up getting his leg torn up pretty badly. Thankfully, the deep wound healed well because of his owner’s and trainer’s excellent care. We took over Pogo’s care a few months after the injury and kids often ask about his big scar. Pogo is not-your-typical-pony, and is steady and reliable, and (for the most part) stays out of trouble. He will do anything for a cookie!
We hope that the kids will gain insight as they realize how God can restore and heal us from our wounds as they see how Pogo has recovered from his severe injury.
DOB: 4/10/2006, Arrived: 4/18/18
Breed: Warmblood x
Current Sponsors: FINN NEEDS SPONSORS!
If there’s one type of horse that any program who works with kids or those who deal with fear needs to have it’s one who is big and strong, yet confident, steady, and gentle. He must have the heart for the “job”: to be engaging with each new person he encounters and not tire of some of the things that new or young riders can do that some horses to not have the ability to handle time and again… that horse at our Ranch is Finn.
Finn came to Freedom Reigns Ranch as a special gift from the Hupy family. He is a beautiful, 16hh, black, warmblood. He is as steady and confident as they come and was an excellent partner for Amelia- a talented rider with Stephanie Hall. And while the plan was for Finn to continue taking Amelia to shows, bone spurs in his hocks ended his career as a show hunter. Being such a young and endearing horse they knew that Finn wouldn’t like simply being retired to pasture and when Stephanie told the Hupy family about Freedom Reigns Ranch, they knew it would be a great fit…And indeed it is! Finn moved seamlessly into session work and has found his niche in helping participants experience the power someone can demonstrate while still encompassing gentleness. With deep gratitude to the Hupy family we welcome Finn into our Ranch family!
Gideon Leil (former session horse)
DOB: 2011, Arrived: 8/2017, went to his new home 11/2018
Breed: Selle Francias x Quarter Pony
Originally "Leil", Gideon was pulled from a kill pen in Kansas by his former owner. Due to no fault of their own, thousands of horses each year end up in the terrifying predicament of being unwanted and surrendered to auctions. "Kill buyers" purchase these horses for a mere few hundred dollars at most; they are mercilessly loaded onto crowded trucks and transported over the Mexican or Canadian border to be slaughtered for human consumption. Aside ethical implications and the fact that humane horse slaughter is impossible, their meat is tainted with chemicals and drugs that are toxic to humans.
Gideon was one of the lucky few that was able to be saved just in time and came to us.
We had the privilege of bringing Gideon along in his training. While he loves people, his energetic personality and athleticism could sometimes get in the way of his desire to be a calm session horse. We started playing with Gideon over some small jumps and did some arena work to discover that he would probably make someone an excellent eventer or show jumper. We began the process of finding him a home that could channel his energy in a way that he, too, enjoyed and found that with an incredible eventing trainer. Gideon is thriving and loving his new job. He went from a discarded in a kill pen, to a beloved session horse, and is now an amazing eventing partner for a family in Florida.
From kill-pen rescue, to beloved session horse, to eventing partner. Gideon is thriving!
In Loving Memory: Warrior
DOB: 2007 Arrived: 6/17/2019, ran strong and free on 6/25/2019
Breed: AQHA Racing Quarter Horse (tattooed)
Warrior was discovered by a Volunteer's sister in a grass-less rock pasture at a self-care boarding facility in Middle Tennessee. After law enforcement failed to step in, Warrior was purchased from his former owner by the person who discovered him and handed over to Freedom Reigns Ranch. He was immediately brought to our vet, examined, weighed (missing a staggering 400 lbs), and a re-feeding protocol established.
Freedom Reigns volunteers who cared Warrior around-the-clock for several days. Re-feeding a horse who is emaciated is a delicate and risky balance; while they need nutrients to gain weight, doing so too fast will overwhelm their fragile, compromised system. It is a long and slow process that has to be monitored very carefully.
For the first few days, Warrior seemed withdrawn. It wasn't until he met a group of Junior Ranchers 4 days after his rescue that he "woke up". Our founder recalls "the moment they surrounded him, I saw hope enter his eyes. His countenance entirely changed!". From that moment, he was engaging, loved his 5 minute hand walks, and thrived off of attention. He was defying all odds, and remarkably, showing weight gain with just getting water and hay.
Early in the morning on June 25, Warrior passed away suddenly and unexpectedly from an internal rupture. Despite our best efforts, he succumbed to the consequences of his former owner's neglect.
So many people who met Warrior in the 8 days he was at Freedom Reigns shared how deeply meeting him impacted them. To read one such story, click here:
Note: We believe at Freedom Reigns Ranch that we are to have a part in the redemption of God's creation where people have failed to realize their responsibility to care for those they were given charge over. Warrior's condition was witnessed by no less than 30 people, including an on-duty sheriff, before Freedom Reigns Ranch stepped in in an effort to save his life. Please report suspected and known abuse to your local Department of Agriculture and allow them to investigate. That resource in Tennessee is located here:
To meet our horses, scroll up
For additional information on horse sponsorship, click here.
Horse sponsorship is a contribution of $25+ per month for a partial sponsorship (full sponsorship of a horse is $4800 per year). To show our appreciation, you will receive a professional photograph of your sponsored horse, a special one-of-a-kind shoe that is decorated by one of our volunteers who spends time with the horse you've sponsored as well as quarterly updates on how your horse is helping impact and change the lives of participants at the Ranch. Please note: sending this appreciation packet takes about 8 weeks after your sponsorship begins to allow us time to have a participant create your special gift.
At the heart of the Ranch are our horses. Horses are what often draw participants to the Ranch, they're who God uses to help break down barriers very quickly to allow hope to enter a hurting heart. Horse Sponsorship is the main way in which the program is funded and allows us to continue to offer sessions completely free-of-charge to all who come to the Ranch. The five primary horses we currently have at the Ranch come from a variety of backgrounds: loved and well cared for since birth, misunderstood and abused, to neglected with a completely unknown past. Often, participants end up seeing themselves in their horse's story, taking comfort in being with their new equine friend as they begin to allow some of their story to be revealed. Each horse provides 1-2 sessions per operating day at the Ranch and is loved on for countless hours longer.
Though we don't subscribe to one clinician or method, we use a lot of "natural horsemanship" elements in our program. We've found that our horses respond best when we seek to understand their language- not the other way around. Often, our participants are also able to draw lessons about relationships, boundaries, being fully present/mindfulness, respect, trust, and confidence in learning how to relate to horses in this way.
Please consider how you can partner in hope and healing by sponsoring one of our "angels in horsehair". Providing each horse with hay and feed, veterinary care, necessary supplements, farrier (hoof) care, tack and extra care as needed is possible because of our incredible Equine Sponsors and we greatly appreciate every one!
This agreement in no way entitles sponsor to ownership and/or exclusive privileges in any way to sponsored animal or ranch property. Freedom Reings Ranch accepts all liability, expressed and/or implied, for sponsored equine. Sponsor has the right to cancel this agreement with a 30 day notice to Freedom Reigns Ranch by emailing freedomreignsTN@gmail.com. All monies received from sponsor to date of cancellation remain the property of Freedom Reigns Ranch. Please note that there may be more than one sponsor per equine.