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January 10, 2014

Now, That's a Walking Horse!

The HSUS grant and recognition program rewards humane owners and riders of Tennessee walking horses.

  • Registered walking horse Miss Anny competed as an endurance horse before beginning her career as a therapy horse with Sandra Tuthill, winner of a 2013 grant. Sandra Tuthill

  • 2013 grant winner Teresa Bippen funded two clinics on "getting a horse to gait through proper development of the horse’s footfall, the back, and the use of rhythm and relaxation" rather than cruel methods. Teresa Bippen

  • The seminars made possible by Diane Little's 2013 grant were sponsored by Friends of Sound Horses, which she says "deals with the whole horse—emotionally, mentally, and physically." Diane Little

  • The program is open to all flat-shod, registered Tennessee walking horses being used in ways other than traditional show-ring rail classes. Dianne Little/For The HSUS

"Now, That's a Walking Horse!" is designed to encourage opportunities for the use, care, and training of Tennessee walking horses apart from the traditional show ring.

The program is open to all flat-shod, registered Tennessee walking horses being used in ways other than traditional show-ring rail classes.

Recognition Award

Recognition awards are for amateur owners and riders using Tennessee walking horses in new/non-traditional ways and multi-breed environments.
Learn how to apply


The grants are designed to encourage and support therapeutic and natural horsemanship programs and clinics.
Learn how to apply

Tell your federal legislators to protect walking horses by supporting the PAST Act today! »

2013 winners

The 2013 Recognition Award recipient

  • Keith Kibler of Marion, Ill., took his two registered walking horse mares into the very non-traditional world of all-breed endurance riding. For two years, Silver’s Wild Kate was the top walking horse in the American Endurance Ride Conference. She also set a world record as the first walking horse to win at a 100-mile distance. Says Kibler, "I don’t think that we have touched on how good these horses can be."

The 2013 Grant recipients

  • Anita Dunham of Missouri’s grant will help her host a public clinic in which Dr. Michael Guerini will teach natural horsemanship. Learning "the natural way to move and connect with our walking horses," says Dunham, will stop people from relying on "harmful training methods." The clinic is associated with the United Pleasure Walking Horse Association of Missouri, which promotes naturally gaited pleasure walking horses.
  • Sandra Tuthill, uses 10-year-old registered walking horse mare Miss Anny as a therapy horse at Tuthill Farms Therapy Center, Inc., in Michigan. The grant will support the center's use of horses to enhance treatment for depression, PTSD, addictions, autism, and other life challenges. Tuthill says Miss Anny’s "Smooth gait keeps new riders in a place of balance," while "her quiet, loving demeanor is disarming and relaxing."
  • Teresa Bippen, president of Missouri’s Friends of Sound Horses, Inc.—a nonprofit education and outreach organization dedicated to the humane training of gaited horses—says her grant will help defray the costs for two clinics on using natural horsemanship techniques with gaited horses taught by Gary Lane. "These two clinics will help us to further our outreach to people who want to learn more."
  • Kimberly Cardeccia, MA, LPC, employs Glory, a 23-year-old registered walking horse mare, in her Michigan therapy practice. Cardeccia observes that Glory’s "extensive experience working with humans in a variety of endeavors [make] her calm and attuned to people" and a "ready partner in therapy." She will use her grant to provide therapy with Glory to people who otherwise couldn’t afford it.
  • Dianne Little of Canada will fund an Independent Judges Association seminar in Nashville, Tenn., with her grant. The clinic, which features equine biomechanics and anatomy expert Jillian Kreinbring, will also be open to the public. Sponsored by Friends of Sound Horses, the seminar will educate a broader audience about focusing on the "whole horse" and the value of "sound, naturally gaited walking horses."

How to apply for an award or grant

Download and fill out the 2014 "Now, That's a Walking Horse!" application [PDF]. Once you've thoroughly and legibly completed all of the application's pages, mail it to the following address:

ATTN: Walking Horse Grant and Recognition Program
700 Professional Drive
Gaithersburg, MD 20879

Applications must be postmarked by November 1, 2014, to be considered for the 2014 program.

Download the application [PDF]

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