Gentle Carousel Therapy Horses Killed by Dogs


Mozart and Catherine, two trained therapy horses from Gentle Carousel Miniature Therapy Horses, have died after an attack by neighbor’s dogs. Mozart was found dead in his pasture by caretakers. Catherine was still alive but badly injured when she was discovered after the March 4 attack. She was treated for 10 days at an equine hospital, but ultimately her injuries proved fatal.

According to, the owner of the two dogs told a deputy that the dogs had escaped from her fenced yard and were missing for “an extended period of time.” The owner also said that one of the dogs had shown aggressive tendencies before. The dogs were signed over to animal control and have been euthanized.

Gentle Carousel’s work with therapy Minis spans a wide range of situations across several regions of the country. The organization is headquartered in Florida, but has satellite locations in New York and Los Angeles. The horses frequently visit hospitals, assisted living facilities and hospice programs to bring some light into the lives of children and adults in difficult situations. They also visit schools, youth programs and libraries as part of a literacy promotion program.

The horses have been in the news for traveling to comfort people in the aftermath of tragedy, including tornadoes in Oklahoma and the 2015 church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina. In 2012, Gentle Carousel horses visited Newtown, Connecticut, after a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Catherine was among the therapy horses that comforted friends, family and members of the community after that tragic act of violence.

You can read more about Gentle Carousel in the Over the Fence blog here on HorseChannel. Find out more about how to support the organization at their website,

A GoFundMe page is currently set up to help raise funds to cover Catherine’s vet bill.

Leslie Potter is a writer and photographer based in Lexington, Kentucky.

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Leslie Potter is a graduate of William Woods University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Equestrian Science with a concentration in saddle seat riding and a minor in Journalism/Mass Communications. She is currently a writer and photographer in Lexington, Ky.Potter worked as a barn manager and riding instructor and was a freelance reporter and photographer for the Horsemen's Yankee Pedlar and Saddle Horse Report before moving to Lexington to join Horse Illustrated as Web Editor from 2008 to 2019. Her current equestrian pursuits include being a grown-up lesson kid at an eventing barn and trail riding with her senior Morgan gelding, Snoopy.


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