Changing the World— One Horse at a Time

I am pleased to announce the release of The Compassionate Equestrian.


Compassionate Equestrian Book CoverThis book, born out of a unique collaboration with a long-time trainer and competitor Susan Gordon, introduces the 25 Principles of Compassionate Equitation: a set of developmental guidelines that encourage a profound level of personal awareness during not only interactions with horses, but with all sentient beings.


By developing deeper compassion for our horses—and for ourselves— equestrians take the first step on a path to transcending differences and disagreements, learning instead to empathize and connect more closely with the “global collective” of horses and horsepeople.


Discover the simple changes any horseperson can make that will ultimately have a vast impact on the rider’s relationship with the horse, the state of the horse industry, and the world as a whole.



About my co-author:


SUSAN GORDON was a professional hunter/jumper trainer from 1983 to 2009. After retiring from training and teaching, she founded Green Pony Productions for the production of digital media content relating to social justice issues for horses. She writes and blogs regularly regarding the 25 Principles of Compassionate Equitation.




What people are saying about the book:


“This is a book for those who seek a mutually satisfying relationship with their horses.  The Principles provide a road map…we should read them carefully and often.”


Hilary Clayton, BVMS, PhD, Dipl. ACVSMR, MRCVS



“The Compassionate Equestrian is both ahead of its time yet remarkably ancient in its wisdom and fundamental teachings.  Based in art and proven modern science, the 25 Principles are a priceless collection of universal values, methods, and techniques that will greatly improve the mind and body of both horse and rider.  This impactful book is loaded with valuable lifelong lessons that place compassion and empathy at their core.  It will enable readers to develop and sustain meaningful, respectful, and successful partnerships with their horses.”


Philip E. Richter, Treasurer, United States Equestrian Team Foundation



“I would highly recommend this book for anyone who loves animals—not just horses—and wants to gain an understanding of them on a deeper, more intimate level. The authors offer us numerous, often profound insights, through their own varied experi­ences and backgrounds, regarding the integration of compassion into all areas of our lives.  With deeper reading, one begins to appreciate more fully, how the immutable relationship between human health, animal health, and that of our environment—a world of One Health—is the real basis for improving the life of our entire planet.”


Ted Cohn, DVM, President, American Veterinary Medical Association



“Dr. Allen Schoen is an innovative, compassionate, and thoughtful veterinarian whose book emphasizes the responsibilities that attend the human-equine relationship.  The Compassionate Equestrian provides practical information derived from a lifetime of caring for sport and pleasure horses.  Dr. Schoen has a keen eye for animal and human behavior, and his book has value for the novice and the experienced equestrian alike.”


Michael Kotlikoff, VMD, PhD,
Austin O. Hooey Dean,
College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University



“Dr. Schoen is an innovator in combining conventional medicine with holistic therapies.  In The Compassionate Equestrian, he charts the rise of a unique field of veterinary medicine whose foundation rests on a profound respect for all life, and specifically for horses.  This is compassion in its purest form, and it’s revolutionary.  Meticulously researched,  The Compassionate Equestrian enlightens any reader on the benefits of applying sympathy and empathy to the core of all equine training and care.  Practicing compassion is the essence of the bond between rider and horse, and of course between any two people.”


Arriana Boardman, Member, ASPCA Board



“Dr. Schoen has always lead by example, and lives a lifetime of connected joy with the horses that he treats and their owners.  We will continue to benefit from his kindness and guidance through his new book, The Compassionate Equestrian.  From backyard ponies to trail horses to show jumpers, it’s ‘all about the horse.’”


Paula Kennedy, LVT, Dean’s Advisory Board, Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine



“This book challenges us, to ‘slow down,’ take a deep breath, and examine our relationship with ourselves and with our horses. Using storytelling and personal experiences, combined with scientific research and a good dose of spirituality, these pages offer something for all readers.  Whether you are a seasoned horseperson or someone who just loves horses and wants to share in the journey, the book promises discovery for all.”


Mary Ann Simonds, Author,
Founder and Director of the
Whole Horse and Equestrian Science Institute



“The horse just happens to be the perfect animal to help us understand ourselves better.  He’s far more physically powerful than us, but also more perceptive in many ways.  Horses can see right through us, and they reflect our deeper selves back to us in a way that is undeniable.

This much-needed book asks us to not only try to become better observers of our horses, but to think about that which we notice in a new and deeper way. Most importantly, it asks us to watch ourselves as we are interacting with our horses.

The authors give us a path to follow, challenging us to use the powerful tools of self-awareness or mindfulness, and meditation (QFI in the book) to change our own behaviors and become better stewards of the horse, and then extend that to our interaction with other beings.

Learning these tools takes work, but with effort it can become an integral part of our behavior.  I know this because I have been on a similar journey myself, and the rewards gained in all aspects of my life—from my relationship with horses and people, to my ability to function in my businesses—are profound.”


Doug Thal, DVM, DABVP, Creator of The Horse Side Vet Guide



“I very much enjoyed reading the Compassionate Equestrian by Dr. Allen Schoen.  Reading this well-written book allowed me to better understand, both conceptually and scientifically, the feelings of our equine patients.  The information in the book will hopefully improve my ability to “listen” to my equine patients and become a more compassionate veterinarian and person (see quote on page 320).”


Tom Divers DVM, ACVIM, ACVECC and
Professor of Medicine in the College of Veterinary Medicine,
Cornell University, Ithaca N.Y.



“Dr. Allen Schoen and Susan Gordon provide a thoughtful, provocative reminder that horses feed off our personal health and well-being.  The rush of our daily lives, work schedules, and pressures to succeed can weigh heavily on veterinarians, trainers, and riders, and can influence our approach to the horse.  The horse can sense this tension or stress. The book reminds us that personal mental/emotional well-being is important to ourselves and those (both horses and people) we interact with daily.”


 Ryland B. Edwards, III, DVM, PhD, DACVS, Fairfield Equine Practice, Newtown, Connecticut



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