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January 9, 2009

The HSUS, Parelli Natural Horsemanship Join Forces to Celebrate Horses

The Humane Society of the United States

The Humane Society of the United States and world-renowned natural horsemanship trainers, Pat and Linda Parelli, are joining forces to spotlight the trainability and intelligence of rescued horses. At each of seven U.S. venues for Parelli's 2009 "Celebration" events, The HSUS will work with a local horse rescue group to help a horse in need of training through a three-day development program with Pat Parelli. At the end of the event, the horse will be offered for adoption to an approved, loving home.

Natural horsemanship is a gentle training technique that uses knowledge about herd dynamics, horse behavior and communication to help people and horses communicate effectively and build trust-based relationships. The Parelli Celebration events will offer three days of inspirational and educational seminars and training sessions, designed to help horse owners understand how to communicate effectively with their horses and build a lasting partnership both in and out of the saddle.

The first Celebration will take place Jan. 30-Feb. 1 at the Williamson Agriculture Park in Franklin, Tenn. Volunteer Equine Advocates, a Tennessee-based horse rescue organization, will provide the featured rescued horse. Video of the Parellis interacting with their horses is here.

"Most horses who end up at rescues are not there because they are 'bad' or broken — but because their owners did not have the knowledge or resources to build a successful relationship with them. The Parelli Natural Horsemanship method of training teaches horsemen and women how to communicate effectively with their horses, setting the stage for a long, successful relationship," said Keith Dane, director of equine protection for The Humane Society of the United States. "We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the Parellis to celebrate horses and help find adoptive homes for rescued horses across the country."

Pat Parelli said, "Our greatest initiative in the horse industry is to help people have more successful relationships with horses and to not treat them as disposable items. Too many people get out of horses because they get frustrated or afraid, and too many horses suffer as a result…together we can change that."

This initiative builds on other programs developed by The HSUS to encourage horsemen and women to consider a rescued horse when bringing a new horse into the family and to help horse rescues operate more effectively. In 2007, The HSUS co-founded the Homes for Horse Coalition, a national group of horse welfare organizations working to increase the professionalism of the equine rescue community and end horse slaughter. The HSUS also offers a lending library of Parelli training materials to 501(c)3 horse rescue organizations; a user friendly Web site where horse rescues can post their adoptable horses, free of charge as well as a set of best practices for operating equine rescues and sanctuaries.

A portion of the proceeds of some ticket sales will be donated to The HSUS for its equine protection efforts. In addition, The HSUS will have a booth at each Celebration, where participants will have access to informational brochures and other horse care materials.

Other Celebration venues include: April 17-19 - Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex - Harrisburg, Penn.; May 15-17 - Reno-Sparks Livestock Events Center -Reno, Nev.; June 5-7 - Alliant Energy Center - Madison,Wis.; July 24-26 – Kemper Arena - Kansas City, Mo.; Sept. 25-27 - Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum - Fort Worth, Texas; and Oct. 9-11 - The Lakeland Arena - Lakeland, Fla.

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The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 10.5 million Americans, or one of every 30. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.

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