Connecting with horses to reconnect with life.


James, a 30-year old veteran, was suffering from extreme PTSD after his tour in Iraq. In addition to experiencing flashbacks, difficulty with anger management, and feeling disconnected from his family, James also experienced intermittent deafness – a condition his doctors could not explain. He could no longer work, attend school, or provide for his family. James came to counseling feeling very frustrated and scared.

After several months of intense therapy, James is now healthy because of equine assisted counseling and a special relationship with a horse named Mac.

Mac is an expert at reading and responding to the most subtle changes in the clients who worked with him. Through his work with Mac, James began to identify the behavioral and physiological changes in his body. Today, James has regained control over his life.

You can help make sure that people like James have access to this unique and powerful form of healing.


Equine Connection Counseling, PLLC (ECC) is an equine assisted counseling practice in Cleburne, TX. Founded by Dr. Hallie Sheade in April 2014, ECC works with a special herd of therapy horses to provide counseling and psychotherapy to military veterans like James, at-risk youth, trauma survivors, and more. We work with our fiscal sponsor, Wings of Hope Equitherapy, a non-profit therapeutic horsemanship center that has been offering equine-assisted activities and therapies to individuals with disabilities since 1996. Through our partnership we are able to provide our services at little or no cost to our clients in the Dallas-Fort Worth region.

Unlike traditional counseling, equine assisted counseling takes place in a natural setting among horses. Our clients work with a therapeutic team that consists of a qualified mental health professional, a certified equine specialist, and carefully selected therapy horses. The relationship with the horse becomes a safe space for our clients to explore, reflect, grow, and heal. Clients who have tried traditional therapies without success often feel more motivated to attend sessions with the horses and experience benefits more quickly. Some of these benefits include:

  • Feeling calmer and happier both during and outside counseling sessions
  • Improving self-esteem and self-empowerment
  • Developing more fulfilling and satisfying relationships

100% of funds raised go to direct costs.


Presently we work with almost 40 clients each week. Our goal is to expand our services to provide free and low cost equine assisted counseling to anyone in the community who needs support regardless of their ability to pay. In 2016 we hope to be able to serve up to 60 clients each week. In order to reach this goal, we need a pool of money that will be used to provide partial or full assistance to clients with financial need. When you donate to the Angel Fund, you are directly funding equine assisted counseling sessions for clients with economic hardship. Your contribution is tax-deductible because the Angel Fund is held by our fiscal sponsor Wings of Hope, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Be An Angel this holiday season and donate!

To learn more about our work, visit equineconnectioncounseling.com or like us on Facebook.

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