Thera-Tree® relieves pain for rescue horses at Equine Welfare Society

Rescue horses in particular have painful histories and troubled stories that havens like the Equine Welfare Society at Bridlespur Farm in Keswick, Va. work to help. Tad Coffin's SmartRide Rx technology in his saddles and now also in the Thera-Tree® was a big breakthrough for four of these horses who experienced the pain relieving, relaxing, and performance improving effects of the latest technology.

EWS Director Erica Stevens said "We are constantly pursuing different options to help increase quality of life and welfare of our herd while they are transitioning to healthy and fit adoptables. We think the SmartRide Rx technology fits seamlessly into our program and will provide these horses with the comfort and healing they need, both mentally and physically. I look forward to exploring the Thera-Tree® as part of the rehabilitation and training of Equine Welfare Society horses!”

One of the auditors of the program was Carly Cowherd, DVM. As a practitioner of Western veterinary medicine, she came to the program with a bit of skepticism about any new alternative therapy. After watching the horses experience the effects of the Thera-Tree®, she noted the following: “They were all licking and chewing, demonstrating clearly relaxed demeanors. The degrees of change were dependent on the horse-- some of them fell asleep, others were more still, less agitated. I could definitely see that something was happening. Though it is not a common therapy, I could see that it is definitely a tool that I could employ.”

Then Tad traded the Thera-Tree® for his saddle with the same SmartRide Rx technology inside it to continue the therapeutic effects as he rode “Shanti”. This horse started out the evening painfully back sore. After wearing the Thera-Tree® for an hour, her back pain was significantly alleviated. When Tad rode her, the fluid way of going and the relaxed expression of the mare indicated a high degree of comfort. “It looked like she was enjoying the ride. She went really beautifully,” said Dr. Cowherd.

What was quite remarkable was that Tad spent most of his ride at the sitting trot or deep seat canter, a counter intuitive approach to riding a horse with back pain.

At the end of the ride, Tad removed the saddle, tested for pain and the mare showed no reaction whatsoever.

For a horse to begin a session crumpling from the touch of a person to her back to being ridden in a saddle in full seat to finishing with no back pain is unexpected, if not remarkable. It is certainly a new horizon for us to consider when it comes to saddles.

EWS Director Erica Stevens said “I’ve received very enthusiastic feedback and it was our best attended Winter Workshop to date. I applaud Tad’s commitment to equine welfare and passion for utilizing technology to maximize the health and comfort of horses.”

We know that this technology can make a significant impact on the well-being of rescue horses throughout the country and across the world, and look forward to continuing to work with horse welfare groups, including groups that work with off-track Thoroughbreds.

To see what SmartRide Rx technology can do for the welfare of your horse and enhance your partnership with him, give Tad a call to sign up for a Thera-Tree® as a monthly rental or inquire about his saddles: (434) 989-3229. You can also read more about it by visiting

Facebook, March 15th 2019

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