×
LEARN MORE ABOUT US HERE
Our Work About Us Grants How to Apply Recipients Photo Credits
Equine Welfare Network Sign Up Here Equine Charity Network Alliance Guardians Champions Equine Education Network

Awards Equine Award Horse Stars Hall of Fame Humanitarian Award Klinger Award Research Fellowship
Get Involved Make a Donation #RideForHorses Join Here Winners Circle Best Performance Who's In! Attend an Event Establish a Horse Whisperers Fund

EQUUStars Partners News Contact Us Login Individual Organization

America's Horses
Need Our Protection!



Sunset TRP Inc, DBA Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center

GUARDIAN PROFILE - Last Updated: 03/14/2017

I. GOVERNANCE, MANAGEMENT & CONFLICT OF INTEREST

Staff:

Chief Staff Officer:  Erin Bauer, DVM

Employees:   Full-Time:  4  Part-Time:  1  Volunteers:  30

Does your organization utilize a management company for management and administration? No

Describe your training process for employees and volunteers and the types of human resource documents used in your organization including job descriptions, evaluations, etc. To this point, no employee has required special training to perform their specific job since each employee has been hired because they have the background necessary to perform the tasks itemized in their job description. Every employee must sign an employment agreement specific to their job as defined by the job description. Every employee must read and sign that they acknowledge receipt of, and understand the policies of WMTRC as defined in our Employee Handbook.

Volunteers must complete the volunteer application and sign the volunteer handbook acknowledgement. Upon completing the volunteer packet, volunteers attend a 45 minute volunteer orientation. The orientation includes a review of the following:
- Sign in log location
- Safety procedures including location of human first aid kit, equine first aid kit, fire extinguisher and emergency numbers
- Equipment location – helmets, saddles, bridles, grooming tools,
- Introduction to horses – safety awareness, body language and behavior
- Class procedures – volunteer roles in classes (sidewalker and handler)
- Appropriate dress – footwear, clothes, jewelry
- Cell phone and iPod/mp3 player policy
- Feeding policy – appropriate equine snacks, time and quantity

Depending on volunteer desire and previous experience, additional volunteer training includes horse handling. There are two horse handler levels, barn handler (basic skills) and class handler (basic skills and handling during classes). Training includes:
Barn handler
- Overview of horse body language and moods
- Correct approach of horse in paddock or stall
- Correct way to return a horse to paddock or stall
- Correct placement of halter
o Walking with horse – where to walk, correct hold and use of lead rope (pressure), voice commands
- Correct position of horse on cross-ties
- Grooming
- Equine health – what to look for when grooming (body, feet, etc.)
- Safety awareness
Class handler, includes all barn handler training as well as:
- Correct use of tack and placement
- Lead horse into and out of mounting ramp
- Lead horse through class activities including:
o Walk/halt transitions
o Leading circles, weaving cones
o Trotting
o Dismounting
- Work with student leading the horse

Additional volunteer training by volunteer request includes feeding policies and procedures.

Governing Body:

Board meetings per year:  5

Number of Board Members:  6  Number of Voting Board Members:  6

Board Compensation:

Is Board Chair compensated?  No  Is Treasurer compensated?  No

Are there any other Voting Board Members that are compensated?  No

Board Relationships:

Are any members of the Board or Staff related to each other through family or business relationships? No

Board Affiliations:

Are any Board members or Staff associated with and/or compensated by another organization with a relationship or business affiliation to your organization? No

Conflict of Interest:

Does your organization have a written conflict of interest policy and regularly and consistently monitor and enforce compliance with the policy, including requiring officers, directors or trustees, and key employees to disclose annually interests that could give rise to conflicts?  Yes


II. PROGRAMS

1. What percent of your total programs and services are horse-related? 100

2. Describe your specific horse-related programs services or activities:
     Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center was created to help fill a need in Miami-Dade County for a place where people with disabilities can go to participate in equine assisted activities. We believe people can develop therapeutic relationships with horses, crossing boundaries of speech and physical disabilities in a way that encourages healing and improved self-esteem. To this end, we have developed two program tracks that people may choose between—therapeutic horsemanship, an un-mounted program, and therapeutic horseback riding, a combination of a mounted and un-mounted program.
Therapeutic Horsemanship is a hands-on educational program that uses the interactions and relationships between horses and humans in an environment of learning and self-discovery. It is designed to promote personal growth and the development of positive social/life skills in a fun and supportive environment. Through a curriculum of activities designed to address individual goals and needs, each equine interaction is framed to help participants learn and grow. The barn/farm environment is a unique multi-sensory classroom that naturally lends itself to achieving these goals.
The attributes of horses make the equine a natural partner to teach us about ourselves and society, develop skills, and practice better ways to navigate life.
o Equines are herd animals that naturally want to interact. They easily engage students with their willingness to respond and cooperate. Developing the skills to effectively communicate with a horse builds self-confidence, empathy, and trust.
o Visually horses are large animals and therefore can easily represent some of life’s bigger challenges and obstacles that each of us face in our personal life and social situations.
o Horses are prey animals whose very survival depends on the ability to be very sensitive to both non-verbal communication and another’s intent, even when it is subconscious. The feedback horses give to humans in response to our body language is valuable information.
o Horses have survived for thousands of years because they create an effective social hierarchy with clear “rules” and responsibilities ensuring safety and harmony within the herd. Learning about herd dynamics and observing the horses as they interact is another metaphor for society, providing opportunities to explore social situations and how to successfully navigate them.
Each week participants explore a new concept (i.e. trust, body language, managing risk, boundaries) through the eyes of their horse. As comfort and confidence levels grow, students tackle new activities, building their self-confidence and skill levels. This program is designed to build confidence, leadership and horse knowledge, and improve social interaction. Students participate in the program in private or group settings.

Our Therapeutic Riding is a mounted equine assisted program in which participants with special needs are taught horseback riding skills while simultaneously working on cognitive, physical, and/or emotional objectives. The program is designed to promote personal growth and the development of positive social/life skills in a fun and supportive environment. Similar to the therapeutic horsemanship program, each riding lesson is framed to help participants learn and grow by designing activities that address an individual’s goals and needs.
The program is tailored to individual student needs and includes aspects of the Therapeutic Horsemanship program. Students build confidence, self-esteem and leadership skills while learning to ride and interact with the horse. Each week the participants start with a horseback riding lesson. As comfort and confidence levels grow, students tackle new activities, building their self-confidence and skill levels. As they interact and work with the horse, they observe the behaviors and responses of the horse and develop horseback riding skills.
The typical riding lesson may include:
- Greet and mount the horse – learn correct way to mount the horse – improves balance and range of motion
- Warm ups/stretches – encourages correct posture for mounted activities and improves muscle tone and range of motion
- Races - e.g. red light/green light race encourages the correct and timely use of walk/halt command – reinforces listening skills and following directions
- Steering obstacles – e.g. weave cones - encourages correct use of reins and leg aides - reinforces right/left discrimination and following directions
- Gait transition – walk/halt/walk or walk/trot/walk – improves correct posture and assists students to improve posture, balance and trunk/core strength/stability
- Dismount and walk horse back to the barn – student further learns safety around the horse, and has the opportunity to bond with the horse – reinforces following directions and sense of responsibility
Engaging in therapeutic horseback riding additionally stimulates motor skills and sensory awareness. This program is open to private and group lessons.

Whispering Manes also offers a Veterans Program. This program is a combination of the Therapeutic Horsemanship and Therapeutic Riding programs previously described, but open only to veterans. We work with recreation therapists from the Miami Veterans Administration Medical Center to bring equine assisted activities to any of the veterans within their inpatient and outpatient programs.

3. Enter the total number of facilities/locations where the horses used in the conduct of your horse-related programs are housed and cared for: 1

4. Describe your non-horse-related programs, services or activities you provide, including those involving other animals. N/A

5. Does your organization operate programs involved with animals other than horses?  No



III. POLICIES

1. Describe your equine management philosophies, practices, policies and operations with respect to the use of the horses in your program, including the rehabilitation and retraining (if applicable), ongoing training, schooling and exercising plan for each horse and your policy as to the number and condition of the horses accepted by your organization. 
     We believe that the horses involved in our program have very challenging jobs. They do not jump fences or gallop long distances, their work area is safe and free of debris, however their daily job requires constant best behavior, focus, and the temperament to care for riders who are inexperienced, unpredictable, and often have very little awareness of their own personal safety. Because of the nature of the work, we believe that our horses have far more value than what we paid for them or the value assigned on donation forms or adoption forms. Our horses are the foundation of Whispering Manes programs, therefore, our equine management philosophy is that every horse needs and deserves the best care we can provide. From the time a horse is brought into the Whispering Manes herd, they are given the time needed to acclimate to the environment, slowly introduced to the farm and the herd, and evaluated daily by our veterinarian and groom for attitude, appetite, and activity. Only once the veterinarian and groom determine that the horse has sufficiently adjusted is retraining for their role as a therapy horse started. Our training methods only involve positive reinforcement and patience. There is no timeline with which a horse must be ready to join the program classes, and that is for the safety and health of our horses, volunteers, and participants. The physical and emotional condition of therapy horses is essential to the success of the individual lessons and overall program. On an ongoing basis, our horses are trained and desensitized to a variety of props and elements typically used during classes. With the assistance of able-bodied staff and volunteers, the horses practice activities that are typically performed in classes. As part of training for the therapeutic riding classes, the horses are exposed to unexpected movements, dropped items, unusual noises and other stimuli that they may encounter in a therapeutic riding session. Additionally, they are trained to stand still in the mounting ramp and support unbalanced or wobbly riders at the walk and trot. The goal being that the horses become accustomed to these activities and stimuli prior to working in classes.
To ensure that the horses are physically sound, they are exercised by able-body staff and volunteers 2-3 times per week. The better the horse's physical condition the less likely they are to become sore or injured during their workday. The exercise regimen includes both lunging and riding at the walk, trot and canter. Each exercise session lasts approximately 20-40 minutes. Horses are warmed up for 5-10 minutes by walking and light trotting on a loose rein prior to engaging in more vigorous exercises. A variety of exercises including lateral work, gait transitions, reining patterns, and ground poles are all incorporated into weekly training to provide both variety and conditioning for the horses. Prior to mounting the horse, the rider who is schooling the horse works with the horse in hand, practicing halt, walk and trot transitions, as well as circles, change of directions and walking over ground poles. This in hand practice is conducted 1-3 times per week to reinforce the class activities. Following exercise sessions, horses are walked and cooled out for 5 -10 minutes. At least once a week the horses walk the perimeter of the 5-acre property for exercise and desensitization to the sites and sounds of the road and adjacent properties. The horses work a maximum of 3 hours consecutively, and no more than 10 hours per week.

At present, our 7 horses and 2 miniature horses meet the needs of the program at Whispering Manes. Over the next two years, we have plans to expand our herd with 1-2 additional horses to help round out and better meet the needs of the participants we serve while also expanding our program offerings to include hippotherapy and equine facilitated psychotherapy. The horses we will look to add will need to meet certain physical characteristics based on size, girth, and movement while also demonstrating the temperament characteristics that we need: patience, calm, tolerance, and a willingness and enjoyment at being handled and interacting with people.

2. Describe how your horses are acquired (adoption, seizure, surrender, donation, purchase, auction sale, retirement). 
     Our horses have come to us through three separate means: no charge leases with private owners, adoption from rescue groups, and private donations.

3. Describe under what circumstances horses leave your organization. Please describe in detail your horse adoption/fostering practices and procedures including any recruitment initiatives you have to attract potential adopters. Please include your policies and practices with respect to horses that are no longer useful or manageable and horses that need to be retired. 
     Of the nine horses currently in the program, six will be returned to their owners should there come a time when they are no longer appropriate for the program. These are the horses that are part of our program through written leases. The three remaining horses, as well as any future horses we may bring into the program, will be handled based on the need for their retirement from the program. If age or poor health is the reason, then the horses will be retired to pasture where Whispering Manes will remain financially responsible for their needs until the time of their deaths. If horse behavior or other concern requires that a horse be removed from the program, then best efforts will be made to transfer the horse to an appropriate home through an interview and site visit. All agreements on horses transferred would include a return clause that should they wish to get rid of the horse in the future, Whispering Manes is notified and given first chance to take the horse back for another attempt at rehoming to a place and person meeting our standards. We have only been open for 5 years, but each of these horses has become a cherished part of our program to our staff, volunteers, and participants. As a non-profit, we cannot keep every horse until the time of it's natural death, however, we take our stewardship of them very seriously and feel that we owe them the best life during and after their time at Whispering Manes that we can find for them. After years of service helping people with disabilities, it is what we owe each of these animals. We have only retired two horses at this point. One horse was returned to a prior owner, and the other was retired to a ranch that is the home of one of our volunteers. Both horses are thriving in their new environments and transitioned into retirement with seeming ease.

4. For new horses, describe your initial assessment process for each horse (i.e. physical examination, test ride, health record, Coggins test, quarantine, veterinary consult, etc.). 
     Our initial assessment process for each horse includes a background information form filled out by the owner, a temperament and behavior evaluation at the farm of origin by our staff, a test ride by an accomplished rider of our choosing, veterinary examination including updating of all vaccinations, deworming, and blood testing when indicated, review of previous health records when available, Coggins test, farrier evaluation, and a 30-day trial depending upon the horse and circumstances. We do not have the ability to quarantine horses, however, no horse is introduced to or turned out with the rest of the herd for a minimum of 14 days after arrival on the farm.

5. Describe your overall horse health care plan and how you assess and monitor the health of your horses on an ongoing basis. Include a description of your vaccination and worming schedule. Include a description of your health/veterinary care plan for at-risk animals, geriatric horses and horses with serious issues. 
     Our horse health program involves general physicals for each horse yearly, annual dental exam and teeth floating, vaccinations based on our geographic location and risk factors, routine fecal egg counts, and a deworming protocol that has been established to follow AAEP guidelines. The horses are given rabies vaccine annually as a matter of public health. They are vaccinated against influenza, rhinovirus, EEE, WEE, tetanus and West Nile vaccine twice yearly. Ours is a closed herd so strangles vaccine is only given if there is an outbreak in the immediate area. Our deworming protocol is based on surveillance fecal egg counts and treatment based on results. Because our Executive Director is a veterinarian, and because we have a paid full time employee dedicated solely to horse care, every horse is evaluated daily for any changes in behavior (in their paddocks, on cross ties for grooming, and in the classes), appetite, movement, or overall physical appearance. Any potential problems are addressed swiftly. Any horse requiring ongoing medical treatment is removed from their paddock and moved to a stall if deemed necessary for the duration of treatment. Only one person, the head groom, is responsible for medicating the horses and therefore any written treatment plan created by the veterinarian is followed by a single staff member so there is no confusion about medical treatments.

We currently have one geriatric horse in the program, and the primary difference in his daily managements is that his body condition score, appetite, thirst, bowel movements, and biomechanics are monitored very closely everyday. His owner comes to visit once every week or two and there is an open dialogue with her regarding his general health and activity so that we may adjust his nutrition and medications as needed for optimal health and comfort. Every horse with particular health, housing, or feeding requirement is managed on an as needed basis.

For any serious, acute illness, lameness, or other health concern our veterinarian (the executive director) has an equine veterinarian colleague who will take over evaluation/ examinations and will work with our veterinarian to create a workable treatment plan and follow up evaluations until resolution has been achieved.

Medical records, including current Coggins results, are maintained for our horses in a binder and available for USDA inspection at any time. All treatment plans are written legibly and placed in a consistent location, and re-evaluated and adjusted as needed.

6. What is the euthanasia policy? Please include specifically under what circumstances your organization will euthanize a horse and whether your organization will euthanize a healthy but difficult horse for space: 
     Our euthanasia policy is such:
Any horse leased to Whispering Manes must revert to the original owner for final decision regarding euthanasia. The decision may be made with the input of our Executive Director/ veterinarian, but the final decision and implementation of that decision will be the owner's.
The horses that are owned by Whispering Manes will only be euthanized based on veterinary advice due to poor health and prognostic considerations: chronic, untreatable pain, or inability to control the disease process. In these instances, the Executive Director/ veterinarian will seek a second opinion from our consulting veterinarian in order to make the decision as impartial as possible.
No animal will be euthanized because of failure to perform in the program, inability to sell or donate. In those instances a healthy animal will be maintained until a proper setting is found for re-homing.

7. What is the breeding policy? Please include specifically if horses become pregnant while in your care, and if there is a no-breeding clause in the documentation your organization uses to adopt, donate, sell, etc. a horse: 
     We do not breed horses.

8. Does your organization provide horses to any facility to use in research or medical training? 
     No

9. If your answer to Question 8 is 'Yes', please explain where and for what purpose horses are provided to use in research or medical training? 
     N/A

10. Does your organization sell, donate or give a horse to an auction? 
     No

11. If your answer to Question 10 is 'Yes', describe under the circumstances where you have sold, donated, or given a horse to an auction, or where you would sell, donate, or give a horse to an auction. 
     N/A

12. Does your organization place horses in foster care? 
     No

13. If your answer to Question 12 is 'Yes', describe how foster homes are selected, screened, and monitored and address all the questions below for each foster home in the space provided: 
     N/A

14. What is the average equine adoption fee/donation received by your organization: Not applicable; None received

15. Adoption Fee Policies
  Not applicable; Fees are not collected; Horses are not offered for adoption.

16. What is your position regarding varying adoption fees vs. one set fee:
*Missing

17. Provide any additional explanation to your answers if needed:



IV. FACILITIES

This section must be completed for each facility/location where the horses used in the conduct of your horse-related programs are housed and cared for. For example, if the applicant is involved with horse rescue and utilizes foster care facilities, the applicant must complete this section for each foster care facility. If the applicant provides equine assisted activities/services to the public at more than one location, the applicant must complete this section for each location that horse-related services are provided. If your organization uses the facility of another organization, please enlist the aid of that organization in answering the questions.

Total facilities at which our organization operates horse-related programs: 1

.

Location 1 of 1
Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center

6255 SW 125th Avenue Miami FL 33183

1. Facility General Questions

1. Name of Contact: Erin Bauer, DVM

2. Contact's Phone: 305-596-4204

3. Contact's Email: ebauer@whisperingmanes.org

4. Does your organization own, lease or use a part of this facility? Own

5-8. Not Applicable.

9. Does your organization operate programs involving horses AT THIS FACILITY that serve individuals with special needs, including but not limited to equine assisted activities and therapies? Yes

10. Enter the total number of instructors/trainers (full-time and part-time) involved with your organization's horse-related programs at this facility: 2.


2. Facility Horse-Related Questions

1. Enter the total acreage dedicated specifically to the horses: 5

2. Describe the number and type of pastures and paddocks, fencing, enclosures, stabling including barns and run-in sheds. There is 12-stall barn located on the property. There are 8 paddocks that contain run-in sheds or shelters. All enclosures are wood fenced with a small wire mesh attached to prevent anything getting in between the fence rails. We use metal gates for the enclosures. There is no barbed wire or electric fencing.

3. Describe how you manage the use of your pastures/paddocks given the size and number of your pastures/paddocks and the number of horses you have at this facility.
     There are 4 single paddocks that horses are rotated through based on personality and preferences, such as how they interact with other horses, do they prefer to be closer to the barn, etc. There are 2 paddocks that can accommodate 3 horses each. The miniature horses have 2 paddocks just for them. Four miniature horses are sheltered in the larger paddock with the larger shelter, and two are housed separately in a smaller paddock with shelter. All horses stay out in the paddocks 24 hours a day except in cases of inclement weather, illness, or other consideration. All single paddocks are 70'X70', the doubles are no less than 70'X140'.

4. How many hours of daily turnout do the horses get? (Estimate or Average) 24

5. Describe the area where your training, riding and equine related activities are conducted, including what type of footing/surface is utilized and what factors were considered to determine the suitability and condition of the area for the activities conducted.
     Our horses are free lunged and on a lunge line in a sand round pen or in a grass field. Grooming activities and therapeutic horsemanship classes take place with the horses on cross-ties and standing on rubber mats adjacent to the barn. The riding classes take place in a covered arena with a sand/textile footing. The sand/ textile matrix used in the riding rings provides a soft surface with traction that drains well after rain and cushions the impact of movement on the horses' joints. Rubber mats are placed over the concrete pads used in the grooming stalls to soften the surface where the horses stand, while the concrete allows a surface that can be washed to maintain cleanliness. The paddock footings are all composed of sand, dirt, and/or grass. Thick rubber mats that can drain overlie a crushed limestone base in the barn stalls.

6. Is the facility in compliance with the Care Guidelines for Rescue and Retirement Facilities prepared by the American Association of Equine Practitioners (whether or not your organization is directly involved with rescue and retirement)? Yes

7. If no, please explain and specifically describe the areas in which the facility is not compliant. Not Applicable

8. If this facility is recognized as compliant with the published standards of another applicable organization, and/or accredited by another applicable organization, including any state licensure or registration process, please provide the details.
     Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center is a Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) International member center.

9. Describe the availability/accessibility of emergency horse transportation at this facility.
     We have 3 private horse transportation sources available to us in case of emergency. Two trailers are present on property and the third is a local contractor for horse trailoring services.

10. Do the horses have specific tack assignments? Yes

11. Describe the plan, process and/or procedures to insure appropriate assessment of tack and the use for saddle fittings, tack, blankets, etc.
     A saddle fitter volunteered time to help evaluate and choose the correct pads and saddles to fit the horses. The horses were measured for their individual blankets. Blankets are rarely used in Miami, but every horse does have their own blanket for the few cold overnights we have each year.

12. Describe the system used by your organization to help staff and volunteers readily identify each horse on the property.
     The horses have color coded halters which match their color coded lead lines and grooming buckets. The stalls in the barn have each horse's name painted on a wood plaque that hangs from the bars.

13. Describe your housing plan and the turnout process/plan for horses normally stall bound.
     We only stall as necessary because of weather, health/injury, or other reason. There are enough stalls in the hurricane-rated barn for every horse to be brought inside if needed. Otherwise all of the horses are turned out all of the time. For a horse that is stall bound for health or injury reasons, the turnout would be determined based on health/injury considerations. Every horse can have a solitary paddock if needed or can be turned out with other horses if that better suits the horse's personality.

14. Describe your feed, feed management plan and your guidelines for the use of supplements.
     Based on recommendations from our supporting veterinarian and our veterinary dentist, we have shifted to an all hay diet with the exception of the miniature horses and two of the privately owned, older horses. All horses are fed twice daily. Food quantities for each horse are written on a board and posted in the food room for all to see. Supplements are used on an as needed basis for each horse, including hoof supplements, joint supplements, and oils. Usage of supplements is determined by the veterinarian. Any supplements fed are written on the feed board under each horse's name with the quantity and time of day to be fed. All horses receive a bran/oat mash weekly to help reduce the risk of sand colic.

15. How do you use the Henneke Body Conditioning Score to guide you in your hennekeing/exercising/use practices for each horse?
     When horses are observed everyday it can be difficult to notice gradual or subtle weight changes even using the Henneke body condition score. In order to monitor each horse and make sure their feed and nutrition is adequate we monitor and record any changes in appetite, or eating behavior, we have a veterinary dentist evaluate and float the horses teeth annually or more frequently if indicated, the executive director/veterinarian palpates each horse on a monthly basis to evaluate changing fat deposits and location of the changes, and finally, horse work hours are logged weekly and tracked to monitor any significant change in work load that may lead to a need to change the feeding protocol for a particular horse. The goal is to avoid dramatic changes in body condition scoring by being vigilant in monitoring appetite and activity prior to significant weight changes.

16. Please describe your activities to limit or control the advent and spread of disease within your facility (Biosecurity plan). This should include but is not limited to your manure management and disposal procedures, your carcass disposal plan and your parasite control plan. Please indicate the role of your veterinarian in the development and implementation of your overall plan.
     We aim to maintain a disease-free herd by keeping our herd closed and on property. Our horses do not travel off the property, and we do not invite new animals on without current vaccinations, Coggins tests, and veterinary examinations prior to arrival. The paddocks and stalls are cleaned twice daily, and the arena and grooming spaces are picked as needed. A company has been hired to remove manure from our designated manure pile on a monthly basis. Our horses are dewormed based on fecal egg counts performed twice yearly. Carcasses are disposed of immediately by a private contractor, Pesky Critters. Fly control is achieved through use of Fly Predator and Trap and Tosses, as well as vigilant cleaning of all horse areas to remove manure. All plans were initiated with the input of our veterinarian and an equine veterinarian backup.

17. Please describe your emergency preparedness plans that address weather related issues, fire safety procedures and/or any additional hazardous scenarios your facility could potentially experience.
     . Living in South Florida means that hurricanes are our primary weather concern. In the event of a hurricane, all horses are brought into the barn, which is a new construction, hurricane-rated barn. The head groom and executive director/veterinarian attended to the horses twice daily while they are confined to the barn. There are security cameras in the barn for remote access viewing of activity within and around the barn. With all horses living outside most of the time, the horses are located in paddocks away from structures that are likely to catch fire. In case of fire, if the horses are in the barn, there are 3 major, wide access points to the stalls for horses to be removed from the barn to the paddocks or field. The 3 access points will maximize the ability of people to get to the stalls and remove the horses safely. There are 3 fire extinguishers located throughout the barn.

18. Please describe the security in place at the facility or facilities to restrict public access and to keep horses safe. Do you have a security system and/or on-premises caretaker?
     We have a locked front gate that is closed all the time. We have a 12-camera surveillance system installed to monitor the farm entrance, the barn access points, the barn aisle, and all of the paddocks. We do not have a caretaker who lives on property.

19. Provide the contact information for the individual or organization responsible for investigating abuse in the county where the facility is located, including mailing address, email address, and phone information.
     Miami-Dade Animal Services Department Animal Cruelty Unit 7401 NW 74 Street Miami, FL 33166 SGALLAG@miamidade.gov 305-884-1101 X 7184

20. Other than the animal control authority noted above, provide the contact information for all local, state and/or national authorities with whom your organization engages to address issues impacting horse welfare, including mailing address, email address, and phone information.
     South Florida SPCA PO Box 924088 Homestead, FL 33092 305-825-8826 laurie@helpthehorses.org Miami-Dade Police For emergencies 911 For non-emergencies 305-4POLICE


Veterinarian Information

View The Vet Checklist conducted on 03/14/2017

Veterinarian: Erin Bauer

Clinic Name: Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center    Street: 6105 SW 125th Avenue    City: Miami  State: FL    Zip: 33183

Phone: 305-968-2973    Email: ebauer@whisperingmanes.org


Instructors assigned to this Facility
(see Instructor Section)

     1. Instructor: Charmaine Desmeules

     2. Instructor: Robin Bramson


3. Facility Horse-Related Inventory Questions

1-a. Enter the total number of horses involved with your organization's programs that are currently housed at this facility: 9.

1-b. Enter the total number of horses housed at this facility: 14

1-c. Enter the maximum capacity of horses at this facility: 15

2016 Horse Inventory

1-d. Did your organization operate programs involving horses HOUSED AT THIS FACILITY during January 1-December 31, 2016? Please select Yes or No. Yes

14 2-a. Total number of horses housed at this facility involved with your programs on January 1, 2016.

           + 0 2-b. Total number of intakes other than returns including donated, purchased, surrendered or rescued.

           + 0 2-c. Total number of horses returned.

14 = Total of 2a-2c

           - 0 2-d. Total number of horses adopted during the year.

           - 1 2-e. Total number of horses transferred to another facility during the year.

           - 0 2-f. Total number of horses deceased during the year.

1 = Total of 2d-2f

13 2-g. Total number of horses housed at this facility involved with your programs on December 31, 2016.

            12 2-h. Total number of horses not retired including horses undergoing rehabilitation and/or retraining.

            1 2-i. Total number of horses permanently retired.


2016 Horse Care Costs

$19000     Feed (Grain/Hay).

$5600     Bedding.

$2000     Veterinarian.

$2500     Farrier.

$945     Dentist.

$4500     Manure Removal.

$1000     Medications & Supplements.

$2500     Horse/Barn Supplies.

$44000     Horse Care Staff.

$0     Horse Training.

$0     Other direct horse-related costs not including overhead or other program costs.

$82045     2016 Total Horse Care Costs

$     2016 Total Donated Horse Care Costs

5110     Grand total of the total number of days each equine was in the care of this facility during 2016.

Average cost per day per horse: $16
Question 3 ($82,045 ) divided by Question 4 (5110).

Average length of stay for an equine: 365 days
Question 4 (5110) divided by total of Questions 2a-c (14).


4. Self Assessment

I. Facility & Grounds
A.Operational

     1. Signage: Are rules, restrictions and warnings posted in or near appropriate areas? All of the time

     2. Lighting: Are rules, restrictions and warnings posted in or near appropriate areas? All of the time

     3. Emergency Contacts: Are emergency contacts posted in easily accessible locations for staff members if only cell phones are available or by each phone if landlines are available? All of the time

      4. First Aid Kits: Are human and equine first aid kits up-to-date and easily accessible? All of the time

B. Structural

      1. Condition of surface: Are horses provided a clean, dry area on which to stand & lay? All of the time

      2. Flooring - drainage & traction: Are floors constructed and maintained for both good drainage and traction? All of the time

      3. Ventilation for enclosed shelters: Is there adequate ventilation and circulation to control temperature and prevent buildup of toxic gases? All of the time

      4. Electrical wiring condition: Is wiring inaccessible to horses and maintained for safety? All of the time

      5. Fire Prevention & protective measures: Are fire prevention and protection measures including fire alarms, extinguishers and sprinkler systems, maintained and in good working order? All of the time

      6. Quarantine/Isolation: Is there a designated and separate area for isolation and quarantine? No

      7. Ill/injured containment: If horses live outside, is there a designated and separate area (stall or enclosure) to house ill/injured horses? Yes

      8. Are the horses housed in stalls/enclosures? Yes-Some of the time

      8-a. If yes, Stall/enclosure size: Do structures allow horses to lie down, stand up and turn around? All

      8-b. If yes, Stall/enclosure cleanliness: How often are stalls/enclosures cleaned? 6-7 days a week

      8-c. If yes, Adequate ceiling & beam height: Is there a minimum of 12 inches above the tip of the horse's ear when standing? All of the time

C. Paddocks/Yard/Pastures/Turnout

      1. Turnout/Exercise Space & opportunity: Is there space and opportunity for horses to exercise or be turned out? All of the time

      2. Fencing - type, height, safety: Are these spaces appropriately fenced? All

      3. Use of electric wire or tape fence: Are electric wires or tape fence visibly marked? Please select 'All or NA' if electric wire or tape fence is not used. All or NA

      4. Condition of fences & gates: Are fences and gates functioning properly by being maintained and repaired when needed? All

      5. Condition of paddock/yard: Are these spaces free from equipment and debris? All

      6. Availability of shelter: Are natural or man-made shelters available to horses for protections from elements? All of the time

      7. Cleanliness: How often are these spaces cleaned? Daily or 6 Days a Week

II. Horse Care

      1. Hoof Care: How often is hoof care provided for each horse? Every 1-2 months

      2. Dental Care: How often is dental care provided for each horse? Annually

      3. Physical Examinations: How often is each horse given a physical exam by a veterinarian? Annually

      4. Horse checks: How often are horses visually and physically checked by personnel at the facility? 6-7 days a week

      5. Food & Water Storage: Are all hay, feed, grain and water sources clean, free of debris and chemicals, and protected from weather and other animals? All of the time

      6. Drinking water: How often do horses have access to clean drinking water? All of the time



6. Public-Related Questions
(required if programs serve individuals with special needs)

1. How many clients participate in the programs at this facility? 150

2. How many hours per week do you operate the horse-related programs at this facility? 35

3. How many weeks per year do you operate the horse-related programs at this facility? 40

4. What is the average wait list time? 0 Weeks(Weeks/Months/Years)

5. How many hours per day does each horse work? (Estimate or Average)

    Mounted: 3.00  Un-Mounted: 0.00  Total: 3

6. How many days per week does each horse work? (Estimate or Average) 3

7. What percent of your programs and services at this facility are mounted (vs. ground-based)? 95%

8. Provide any additional explanation to your answers if needed. Unmounted hours for the horses are counted the same as mounted hours. We do not distinguish the hours if the horses are working with program participants. Horses do not work more than 10 hours per week.


V. Instructors/Trainers


     1. *Instructor: Charmaine Desmeules

         *Facility Participation:

         Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center

Is the instructor certified by an organization that provides training in the programs, activities and/or services conducted by the organization? Yes

Certification 1:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2012

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.Registered Level Therapeutic Riding Instructor

Please use the space below to share any additional information about this instructor. Charmaine is a part-time instructor at Whispering Manes.


     2. *Instructor: Robin Bramson

         *Facility Participation:

         Whispering Manes Therapeutic Riding Center

Is the instructor certified by an organization that provides training in the programs, activities and/or services conducted by the organization? Yes

Certification 1:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2009

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.Registered Level Therapeutic Riding Instructor

Certification 2:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2013

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning

Please use the space below to share any additional information about this instructor. Certified CPR, First Aid, and AED- renewed annually. Completed course work and teaching hours for PATH International Vaulting Instructor- certification pending workshop completion.