The HorseLink Story

Often, we think we must choose a path and follow it in a straight line.  Sometimes, however, a path chooses us. At least, that’s what happened to me.

In the fall of 2011, my well-laid plans were upended by two terrifying events. I almost lost my cherished horse Todd, whom I had raised from birth, to an injury and illness that abruptly ended his competitive life. And my husband and I almost lost our farm located near Bastrop, Texas to a huge wildfire that scorched 32,000 acres.

First a fire, then a realization

Many of our neighbors were not so lucky—losing their homes, their animals, and their sense of security to an inferno that moved with lethal speed after the worst drought in 50 years. The fire burned a small corner of our land before it was beaten back by the brave, committed firefighters who insisted they were only doing their jobs.

I had long nurtured the dream of using horses as intermediaries to help people overcome serious life challenges. But it was always “someday.” Suddenly, I realized that the time was now. The place was here. We had been spared when others had not, and had to give something in return. We’d figure out just how.

Renewed purpose and a safe space

Today, at a time when record numbers of horses are facing abandonment or worse, HorseLink is giving safe haven and renewed purpose to retired competition horses. And it is creating a safe space for people overcoming trauma or serious illness, and returning veterans, and others to discover the transformational power of working with horses.

Please join us in this important work.

Julie Puentes Signature

Founder & Executive Director

The HorseLink - Why it matters
We provide a peaceful and permanent home for retired performance horses, giving them purpose and dignity after their competitive careers. By facilitating enriching connections between horses and humans, we improve the lives of both. Our commitment is to celebrate the grace and spirit of these animals and to honor their transformative power.


A world that appreciates and benefits from the horse~human relationship.