B.C. trainer takes in wild horses, cares for them until ready for adoption

Click to play video: 'This Is BC: Maple Ridge man trains wild horses for adoption'
This Is BC: Maple Ridge man trains wild horses for adoption
Graeme Bull has made it his mission to train wild horses so they can be adopted. Remarkable, given that he was terrified of horses as a child. As Jay Durant reports on This Is BC, overcoming that fear has allowed him to become a horse whisperer – Jul 14, 2022

Graeme Bull remembers the rough shape Annie was in when she arrived at his property in April.

The wild chestnut horse, a little over a year old, would barely tolerate being touched by humans.

“Incredibly scruffy, very dirty and she was full of lice and ticks,” said Bull, the man behind Stable Horse Training in Maple Ridge, B.C.

Annie was in need of a little trim and a whole lot of training.

“I’m going to keep her here for at least a year so I can make sure I put all the little bits and pieces in — the framework I believe a horse needs,” Bull, a veteran horse trainer, told Global News.

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Stable Horse Training has eight large paddocks for boarding and housing horses.

Getting a horse ready for adoption requires a lot of skill, but it’s a talent Bull has been honing for the past 10 years when he first began to train them. Now, he has opened his stables to feral horses saved from some harsh conditions.

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“They’ve got their own food to find, they’ve got water to find. They’ve got to avoid predators,” said Bull. “If you look online there are videos of grizzlies chasing these things down.”

Click to play video: 'Goat hitches ride on horse at B.C. farm'
Goat hitches ride on horse at B.C. farm

A bad riding experience left Bull terrified of horses as a kid, but at age 36 he decided to face his fears, finally getting back in the saddle. That’s when life took a turn.

“I thought that’s kind of neat, maybe I can work with horses a little bit,” said Bull.

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He left his job as a computer programmer to become Maple Ridge’s own horse whisperer.

“I don’t know if there is a further career pivot but I used to be just tied to a desk,” he said.

Bull said he taught himself how to train horses by watching videos. He has a YouTube channel to help educate others, and hopes to save many more wild horses.

“When they get rounded up they’ve got two options. They either get adopted or they get sent to slaughter,” said Bull.

Nobody wanted Annie, but Graeme brought her home.

“I was the last person to kind of say well, I’ll come and get her.”

Now he’s doing everything he can through his training to make sure the filly ends up living on somebody’s farm.

“Annie will absolutely find a permanent home,” he said.

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