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Platinum Performance Horse Welfare Awards

Nickname: Zephyr
Birth Year: 2000. Gender: Gelding. Breed: Warmblood.
Affiliated with Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Academy, Inc. .

Zephyr exemplifies the best qualities of a horse that works with and teaches a rider with disabilities to achieve a level of superior accomplishment and, accordingly, he should receive a Platinum Performance Horse Welfare Award. Zephyr comes from a show jumping and dressage background, but has also been a lesson program horse. He has an extraordinary personality that not only enables him to make friends with riders, but also to take care of them. His “teacher” personality allows him to be patient and tolerant of riding behaviors by his disabled riders that he doesn’t share with his “able-bodied” riders. At competitions, he rises to the occasion. You can count on him to perk up, enjoy the atmosphere and allow his riders to perform their very best. Zephyr’s temperament is his best quality for our program. He is patient and forgiving when his riders do something wrong. He is also very responsive to his riders so that he can teach them new skills. Zephyr is our #1 horse for our advanced independent riders. He is involved with therapeutic riding lessons under saddle for riders with disabilities and is an integral part of our competition team. Brendan Budd is a rider who is autistic and has been riding Zephyr for the past year in both lessons and competitions. Kevin Hesser, who has cerebral palsy, and has been participating in the Pegasus program since he was three years old, recently began riding Zephyr in dressage events. Kevin rides without stirrups due to his disability. However, Zephyr has learned how to respond to his uneven cues. This past May, Zephyr was the qualifying horse that was ridden by our Grand Championship and Reserve Championship riders of the Therapeutic Riding Division of the Devon Horse Show. Zephyr would benefit greatly from Platinum Performance products due to the fact that he is a senior horse with navicular changes in both front feet who is consistently ridden by riders with disabilities. He is currently treated with Isoxsuprine, gets special shoeing on a five week schedule and receives regular chiropractic and equine massage treatments. He would benefit from Platinum Performance products that address Bone Health, Coat Health, Hoof Care, Joint Support and Senior Health.

Relationship of Nominator to Nominee
As Program/Equine Director of Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Academy I am responsible for the care and maintenance of Zephyr who we acquired on a free lease three years ago. We were contacted by his owner due to our reputation for the outstanding care we provide for our horses. -- Teresa Doherty