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We work in partnership with both local authorities and The Ranch is on the Dorset Families Matter framework

The Ranch 

  • We envision a community in which all people have access to information and treatment that can help them improve their mental and emotional health by the therapy of animals and achieve harmony, promoting healthier families and communities. 

Our mission 

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    • EDUCATE the public about mental health issues, treatment, the process of therapy.

    • EMPOWER all people’s wellness journeys through access to reliable, unbiased mental health information as well as trained mental health professionals.

    • CHALLENGE the myths, stereotypes, and stigmas that can surround mental health issues and treatment and prevent people from getting help.

    • PROMOTE

       the mental and emotional health of individuals and families in Dorset  by providing professional, research-supported Animal Assisted And Equine therapy with the addition of rescued animals. We also aim to increase the knowledge and ethical practice of therapy with animals by links with the local communities. 

     

     

    • The Ranch values making a positive  impact of all forms of life, including human, animal and nature through promoting the use of animal/equine therapy 

      The Ranch only includes animals in its work that are positively enhanced by that work; each animal has a choice about its participation.

      The Ranch values teaching through example the mutual benefits of the human-animal bond.

      The Ranch values working as much as possible with each client’s strengths and building on those.

       

     

Services

At The Ranch Weymouth, we are the home of Goat yoga in Dorset

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Mindful stretching and relaxation with our yogi goats

The Original home of Goat Yoga in Dorset has proved so popular and after consultation with out regulars we have amended the session to include more mindful relation. whilst keeping true to our original roots.  Goat therapy session, bring your exercise mat (some available to borrow at the ranch), some water to hydrate and experience something different with Emma and our resident Goat Team. This is an outdoor activity that aims to improve your physical and mental health but also offers an opportunity to connect with world around you Emma will lead you around some relaxing stretches while goats frolic around may even perch on you. The relaxed atmosphere at the Ranch allows you to connect with nature and you don't have to worry about others noticing you as all eyes are on the goats. These sessions have a go with the flow attitude , if a goat wanders up to you, you can simply stop what you are doing and have a cuddle for as long as you like before continuing on with the session. The ranch goats enjoy the fuss so don't be surprised if they fall asleep next to you. The sessions generally last an hour but you can always hang back for an extra cuddle. Children and goats have a lot in common from their innocent and curious nature to their fondness for fun. 

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Animal Assisted Activity/ Therapy

Animal Assisted Therapy & What Science Says 
For Mental Health:

  • The simple act of petting animals releases an automatic relaxation response. 

    Humans interacting with animals have found that petting the animal promoted the release of serotonin, prolactin and oxytocin- all hormones that can play a part in elevating moods

  • Lowers anxiety and helps people relax.

  • Provides comfort.

  • Reduces loneliness.

  • Increases mental stimulation.

     

    Assist in recall of memories and help sequence temporal events in patients with head injuries or chronic diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease.

  • Can provide an escape or happy distraction.

  • Can act as catalysts in the therapy process.

    May help break the ice.May reduce the initial resistance that might accompany therapy.

For Physical Health:

  • Reduces the amount of medications some people need.

  • Lowers blood pressure

  • Breathing slows in those who are anxious.

  • Releases many hormones such as Phenylethylamine which has the same effect as chocolate.

  • Diminishes overall physical pain.

  • Relax more during exercise.

  • For Children with Autism


    • Many children with autism feel a deep bond with animals and feel that they are able to relate better than humans.

    • Children with autism are engaged in significantly greater use of language and social interaction in therapy sessions that incorporated animals


    The sessions at the Ranch are person centred and led by you and your needs.  A non structured approach to therapy works well when working in a relaxed and safe environment with our horses, goats and pigs. Through initial assessment a planned and structural session can be made to meet your need With feedback provided 

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Equine therapy 

Equine-assisted therapy involves a horse, a therapist and a horse expert. This team will work with individuals or groups to help them discover more about themselves and develop new ways of thinking. The role of the therapy team is to guide the individual or group along the way, encouraging them to reflect on their experiences and what it means to them.

After an initial consultation, a set of exercises will be carried out according to the needs of the person taking part. Equine-assisted therapy can help with many issues and is considered to be especially helpful for those who want to change elements of their behaviour.

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The Ranch on the WILD side

Animals for therapy in care homes, hospitals and for recovery and mental well-being is not a new phenomenon, think fish tank in the doctors surgery, but it is not just stroking furry animals that has an impact on mental health. Reptiles are joining health teams around the world to aid humans as more studies are correlating improvements in health with animal interactions. We know not everybody has the time, space or ability to keep their own animal, that’s why us bringing the animal to you works so well.

The Wild Ranch team can join you in a school, for a party and in any setting.  And we also are part of the The Ranch Weymouth so can offer 1~2~1 encounters onsite.

We are perfect for children with an interest in animals or anyone looking to create that magical themed party. Also with a range of party options you can be sure to find one that suits your needs. 

But it’s not just for the children we will attend any type of party for any age, Hen Parties, Stag Parties, Weddings, if you are having a party we can bring the live entertainment to you. We also offer a private reptile experience at a location of your choice, so you can just learn about our animals without the need for a big party. 

We have reptiles and invertebrates and provide a variety of snakes, lizards, tortoises, and other mini-beasts.