Walk On Farm
"A true friend knows your weaknesses but shows you your strengths;
feels your fears but fortifies your faith;
sees your anxieties but frees your spirit;
recognizes your disabilities but emphasizes your possibilities."

-William Arthur Ward

Walk On - About the Horses

Cocoa

Cocoa Registered Name: Hinas Poco Start
Breed: Quarter Horse
Sex: Gelding
Birthday: May 1, 1987
Size: 14.2 Hands
Color: Buckskin
Favorite Treat: Carrots and Apples
Best Horse Friend: Jack

Cocoa is a Buckskin Quarter Horse gelding. He was the first horse purchased for the Walk On program at a western lesson barn. His story follows:

“I went to see Cocoa at a barn in Bull Valley, Illinois I arrived ahead of the scheduled appointment on purpose and was therefore able to observe a group of horses outside in a dry paddock area. I was attracted to a 14.2 hand dark quarter horse resting in the field. He had a kind eye and a gentle look on his face. Of course, that horse was COCOA. I watched Cocoa in a lesson with a 9 year old girl. He was kind and took excellent care of her; walking, trotting and cantering on command. To show off his temperament, the instructor threw a beach ball at him, played a radio, and then jumped up and down yelling and screaming. She also had a rider carry a large flag from his back. While cantering with the flag, the flag wrapped around Cocoa’s head. He calmly halted and waited to be rescued. I knew for certain then, that he would be great for the Walk On program.

Cocoa is indeed a kind and gentle participant in our program. Because of his trustworthy nature, he is usually the first horse that participants ride when they come to Walk On. Each day he helps children to sit up tall, guide through obstacles, ride without help, and learn to trot and canter. Each day as I watch Cocoa work, I am grateful that Cocoa works for us.

Foxy

Foxy Breed: Pony of America
Sex: Gelding
Size: 12.2 hand
Color: Roan
Favorite Treat: Carrots
Best Horse Friend: Thomas

Foxy is a 20 something Roan pony. He is famous around Barrington for taking good care of riders.

Foxy is what I call a pass around pony. He is owned by a Barrington Family who out grew him years ago. They don’t want to sell him but did want him to have a useful life. So he is passed to the next child in need of a kind pony. When his last rider outgrew him, Walk On was privileged to have him join our herd.

Foxy has done it all. He is a pony club pony, shown in dressage and jumping as well as a ride and shoot. But he excels at taking care of his riders. Foxy is a BIG horse hiding in a pony body. Foxy has a can do attitude. He is always game for any new activity. This makes him invaluable as a therapeutic riding horse. He tries his best to do any task asked of him: whether it’s to stand quietly while a scared child learns riding is fun or tolerates all the ring paraphernalia, teaching new volunteers to lead, patiently waiting while a rider fumbles around trying to pick feet. He is tolerant of all activities. He is not a push-over pony however. If you are brusque with him, he will quietly turn his back on you. For children who rush into his stall to start the lesson, he teaches them to take a moment to say hello. When they do, they are always rewarded with a nuzzle from Foxy. I can’t figure out how such a big heart can live in such a small body.

Taco

Taco Sex: Gelding
Size: 13.2 Hands
Color: Buckskin

If ever there was a fairy tale come true in the horse world, it’s Walk On’s therapeutic horse, Taco who recently was awarded the 2010 NARHA Regional 7 Equine of the Year; an award that includes states Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas. Originating from a humble beginning as a school horse, Taco has surpassed all expectations with this remarkable achievements. A 13.2 hands buckskin grade pony gelding, Taco has all the ideal qualities for equine therapeutic uses; willing, smart, patient, and best of all, cute and lovable.

The organization, NARHA, is a leading accredited association for equine assisted activities with more than 800 affiliate centers throughout the country, Walk On being one of them. The program stresses the building of coordination, balance, and muscle strengthening through the motion of the horse, similar to the motion of walking. Participating in the structured equine activities under professional supervision has the additional benefit of building self-esteem. Taco has been an integral part of all the above criteria.

One of the deciding factors for the award was a story about a hospice patient, Susan, who rode Taco. Susan suffered from Parkinson disease. It was difficult for Susan to ride, but her determination and love of horses sustained her. Taco gave her a chance at the end of life to make a dream come true. In her wheel chair after the ride she would pet Taco. He would place his head in her lap and nuzzle her while she petted him. This almost magical bond between Susan and Taco amazed everyone around them.

Taco has honored Walk On with this prestigious award. His hard work and dedication to do his job to the best of his ability has furthered the reputation of Walk On as a highly acclaimed Equine Assisted Activity facility.

Rocky

Rocky Breed: Haflinger
Sex: Boy
Age: 16 years
Color: Chestnut

Lucky

Lucky Breed: Paint
Sex: Gelding
Age: 18 years
Color: Paint

When Lucky's family came upon hard times last summer due to the drought, they asked our horse shoer to help them find a good home for him. Very sad for them but LUCKY for us.

Lucky came to Walk On in January 2013; we are so very grateful that we have been given the chance add Lucky to our herd. He has been the perfect gentleman ever since. Lucky is a 15.2 hand Paint gelding about 18 years old. Stop by the farm to meet him.

Thomas

Thomas Breed: Norweign Fjord
Sex: Boy
Size: 26 years
Color: Brown Dun

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