Astoria Dressage works together with Bright Eyes Sanctuary to provide rescue, re-homing and sanctuary for horses and ponies. When a horse or pony arrives they begin rehabilitation and training with Rebecca. Students are involved in the process as appropriate, learning about equine nutrition, anti-parasite care, dental and farrier care as well as physical and behavioral training.
Horses and ponies who take to being ridden by students are kept in the lesson program as long as they are happy. When close connections form and both animal and human chose one another, permanent adoption or temporary stay-doption is available.
Astoria is a 20 year old 15.1 hand Andalusian/QH/Percheron cross and the daughter of the owner Rebecca's childhood pony. She is an integral part of Astoria Dressage and the namesake. Astorias mother Crystal had been kept for many years as a nurse mare. All of her previous foals were killed so that she could be leased out to care for and raise other horses babies and they could go back to racing and breeding. When the industry took a downturn, her mother was abandoned heavily pregnant and nearly died of starvation and neglect. Fortunately she was bought at public auction and was allowed to have one more baby who she kept and raised.
Astoria and owner Rebecca did much of their growing up together and have been together for over half of Rebecca's life and all of Astorias. She has competed through 2nd level Dressage and schooled through 3rd. She has also competed in Three Day Eventing, Barrel Racing, Gymkahna and is a master Trail and Lesson horse. Kind and patient, she is a favorite of beginner through advanced riders, and is the go to for advanced Dressage lessons!
Astoria is available for lessons and occasional practice rides.
AppleJack is an 18 year old 11.2 hand Shetland Pony cross who started his life out west on a large breeding ranch where he was given just a number. He received scars from his rough handling and a botched dental procedure, and was then sold at auction to the highest bidder. So fearful he was of humans that he was immediately sold back at auction each time he was bought until a kind older gentleman made his purchase, outbidding a meat buyer that fateful day who was going to take him to the slaughterhouse in mexico for dog food. When this gentleman passed away his daughter did her best to provide for AppleJack, but he was unable to be caught or contained, such was his fear.
When AppleJack arrived he was thin and riddled with parasites. Under his thick curly coat was a festering fungal infection covering most of his body. His teeth had grown so long that he could barely grind food and his feet grew along the ground like slippers. Slowly but surely AppleJack was physically rehabilitated. Multiple tooth floats and farrier trims, medicated baths and anti parasite medication brought him back to health. With the help of dedicated students, care givers and friends, AppleJack learned to trust humans and even tentatively to like them!
He has been started under saddle and is enjoying his work very much. He is a brave trail and obstacle pony and nickers to be brought in from the field and played with!
AppleJack is available for lessons, practice rides, partial lease or full lease/Stay-dopt.
Zecara is a 14 year old 10 hand Shetland Pony. She began life with a family where she was ridden and played with extensively by the kids. When they outgrew her she was left at the same farm as AppleJack, as a friend for him.
Upon arrival at Astoria Dressage she was suffering from dental neglect so bad that her teeth had bitten almost completely through her cheek from sharp points growing outwards. She had over 10 times the parasite load of a healthy horse, causing her belly to be distended although she was overall thin and in poor nutrition.
Multiple dental trims and anti parasite medication treatments plus careful training brought her back to health and she is a favorite in the lesson program.
Zecara loves to jump, trail ride, and play soccer with our huge soccer ball!
Zecara is available for lessons, practice rides and partial lease.
Sparrow is a 6 year old 14.1 hand Tennessee Walker/Welsh Pony cross. She came through a high kill auction as a tiny, very sick and emaciated 2 year old. She had sold for slaughter but was able to be purchased before shipping out. She nearly lost the fight to the illness Strangles and had stood in too small of an enclosure before arrival for so long that her joints locked and her muscled were very weak.
With medication and around the clock care, Sparrow grew and strengthened. A small playpen was built so that she could enjoy sunshine and grass in an ever growing space, as her body allowed.
Sparrow still has some inconsistencies in her body but is serviceable sound and LOVES to work. She is very brave over fences (jumps) and enjoys playing with the obstacles in the arena so much that, when left to her own devices, she will pull them out of the storage areas and begin doing them herself!
She has both the Tennessee Walker ambling gaits such as the Running Walk as well as the more typical flat walk, trot and canter. Which one you get depends on the day and her soundness level.
Sparrow is available for lessons, practice rides, partial lease or full lease/Stay-doption.