College of Veterinary Medicine |
The People-Pet Partnership

Healthy Animals, Healthy People, Healthy Planet

The People-Pet Partnership (PPP)
PATH, a therapeutic riding program, gives children and adults with disabilities the joy of riding a horse.


The Pet-People Partnership (PPP), a public service program in the Center for the Study of Animal Well-Being (CSAW) in the College of Veterinary Medicine, was created to more fully understand the human–animal bond and to promote the humane treatment of companion animals.

Through education, research, and outreach, the PPP provides a number of important public services, including:

Palouse Area Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH)

PATH’s mission is to deliver horsemanship programs which provide socially and physically therapeutic experiences for people with disabilities and others who would benefit from the programs.

PATH offers a variety of programs to suit many different needs.

The Therapeutic Riding program provides recreational horseback riding lessons to children and adults with physical, mental and emotional disabilities.

PATH to Success is an equine assisted growth and learning program that is directed at heathy youth development.  5th-8th grade students learn social skills such as respect, communication and teamwork by working with horses on the ground and learning to ride.

PATH to Success: A Shared Journey is a program for parent/child pairs to work on strengthening their relationship and improving communication through working with horses.

PATH to Success:  A Warrior’s Journey is a horsemanship program for veterans…

Human Animal Interaction (HAI)

It has long been known that the interaction between humans and animals is powerful, and the bond between them can have positive impacts on both humans and animals. The term "human animal interaction" (HAI) is an umbrella term for the study of this dynamic relationship, but is a fairly recent term and applies to all areas of practice and research that include some kind of interaction (i.e., therapy, intervention, assistance) between humans and animals. This includes work that may be identified under more familiar terms, such as animal-assisted therapy, animal assisted activities, or human/animal bond. Fine (2010) refers to human animal interaction as being in the early stages of development, and only recently gaining credibility within national funding agencies. We believe it is a field that is growing and providing new and exciting possibilities for research and practice. For further information on how to become involved in this work at WSU, and for affiliated faculty and areas of foci, go to the HAI page.

Leo K. Bustad

(1920 - 1998) Dean Emeritus of the College of Veterinary Medicine

What's Happening in the PPP?

Information and registration meeting for PATH to Success

When: TBA
Where: TBA

For more information contact:

Sue Jacobson, College of Veterinary Medicine

Phyllis Erdman, College of Education

Give Now

Contact the People-Pet Partnership program:
People-Pet Partnership
College of Veterinary Medicine
P O Box 647010
Washington State University
Pullman, WA 99164-7010
Phone: 509-335-7347 
Fax: 509-335-6094

Washington State University