LADY ZARA: The Horse Healing Equestrian
Last month I asked if any reader had an interesting psychic/supernatural pets story that I may be able to use in my book: PARANORMAL PETS published by Amazon/Kindle. I was delighted with the response and one reader suggested I speak with Lady Zara Barton a horse healing equestrian who has an amazing gift for helping horses. When I spoke to Lady Zara she was pleased to agree an interview so I immediately booked a flight to the Isle of Man where she lives and this is her wonderful story:
Age just one year Lady Zara Barton could ride before she was walking. Her first horse was a little Shetland Pony called Lucky, jet black, gentle and a brilliant easy ride for young Zara. The ability she displayed even at that tender age really impressed her trainers who were amazed at her incredible control as the horses just seemed to understand what young Zara wanted them to do. By the age of three years Zara was considered to be an equestrian prodigy as she mastered the art of jumping her ponies winning numerous ‘Lead Reins’ competitions in and around her home in the leafy suburbs of Cheshire in the UK.
By the age of tweleve years Zara was frequently featured in the journal of equestrianism Horse and Hound as she won many events at county shows throughout the North of Engalnd and Wales. Following numerous successes with her name being mentioned in the top training circles Zara was asked to start teaching other riders. Despite just being in her teenage years many of her clients were adults who were frequently astounded at the way this gifted girl could improve their horses attitude.
Zara won her first Grand Prix Dressage competition age 18 years of age riding her horse a black mare called Pretty Woman, this is the highest level you can compete at and is the recognised international standard. This determined young lady was now driving her own 4 X 4 SUV with a horse trailer from show to show and winning time after time. Her home now was a huge mansion house on the outskirts of Southport in the county of Lancashire where Zara stabled five horses her favourite being Frank a mighty seventeen two hands bay coulred gelding. At this time people started to ask Zara what was the secret of her success as it seemed she had an almost magical touch. Zara was able to take even the most unresponsive horse and produce a balanced managable ride with many going on to win at county show level. The answer she always gave was this ‘sensitive empathy, discovering the problem and working with the horse to resolve it’. Zara insists that horses are in many respects similar to human beings, if they are sick or have been mistreated they will invariably react accordingly.
Living on The Isle of Man
Lady Zara Barton is now resident on the Isle of Man located some thirty or so miles from the coast of the UK where she breeds and trains horses. Her riding successes are continuing and she is also running her own school of equestrianism there where her talent to train others is nationally recognised. The world reknowned equestion trainer of numerous Olympic champions Conrad Schumaker guides Zara’s work. Conrad has been watching over Zara from a distance for the last ten years. Many believe that Lady Zara Barton is destined one day to become an Olympic Games rider herself. However it is Zara’s ability to take a seriously disturbed or difficult horse and working with it produce a manageable mount, that is her speciality. Zara says ‘the problem with many troublesome horses is that they have often been abused in training’. Zara explained to me that in the not too distant past some trainers used physical corrective measures to train horses to respond in certain ways. This negative programming, beating with sticks, hitting and even punching a horse creates an animal that may very well react in a required way, but out of fear. This is rather like training a human being to move to the left by smacking them round the head every time they move to right. Such cruelty has, in the past, been relatively comon practice in the conditioning of horses, much in the way that the psychologist Pavlov programmed dogs to respond to the ringing of bells. However, when it goes wrong and the horse fails to accept the abuse the result can be a terribly troubled animal potentially posing a serious threat to anyone attempting to ride it. Lady Zara Barton owns such a horse, his name is Wizard and he was, until she re-trained him, considered to be too dangerous to be ridden.
Zara heals a horse
Zara bought her the horse Wizard, a seventeen one hand chestnut gelding as a three year old and when she brought him to her stables he was one brute of a beast, kicking, rearing, bucking and more like a bronco mule in a wild-western rodeo show than a potential equestion dressage champion. But there was something very unique about this big chestnut horse that Zara could sense and she was determined to give him her very best efforts. Wizard though had more problems than even Zara had envisualised, some months on and he was not making the expected progress so Zara new something was wrong. Her close observation of the horse indicated that Wizard was not relaxed in the company of its stablemates. He appeared restless, unsettled, grumpy, lacked anything like an acceptable attention span and was still rearing up. Holding Wizard in her arms one morning to calm him Zara suddenly realised that not only was this big horse nervous he was also in pain. There was no brightness in his eyes, Wizard’s ears were flat and lacked any sign of alertness, the horse was sick, she sensed that very strongly. When the veterinary surgeon gave Wizard a close inspection it was found that within his sinus cavity at the right side of his head there had developed a large cyst. It was this cyst that was now causing the continuing distress to Wizard and it had to be removed by surgery.
It is now over two years since Wizard survived his operation on the sinus cavity when his horrible and painful cyst was removed. Zara nursed him back to health and when he was once again fully fit recommenced the training. Zara was simply determined that this brilliantly beautiful horse would succeed and she is not a lady that gives in. It took time, it took patience and it was worth all the ffort for Wizard is today a star of Dressage at Grand Prix level, he has qualified to compete at the Hickstead Derby, a seriously prestigious event and has been valued at £500,000.00 by Zara’s mentor the highly respected international equestrian Hans Schmelder.
A future cahmpion
I asked Lady Zara Barton what her plans were for the future, did she intend to continue training horses or would she concentrate on riding. This is what Zara told me: ‘I will always be training and nurturing horses, breeding them and producing Grand Prix level champions, it is one of the reasons I am here. Another is to ride and I sincerely believe that one day I will be good enough to be a member of the Great British Equestrain team representing the UK at the Olympic Games’. Having seen what Lady Zara Barton can do when she puts her mind to it I must say we should all be ready to applaud as she brings home an Equestrian Gold medal from some forthcoming Olympic Games.
My book ‘PARANORMAL PETS’ is now published and available on the internet through Amazon/Kindle. The book is a compilation of two of my previous books Psychic Pets and Animals Make You Feel Better with additional material.