WAGENER — A horse named George, dust devils and trailer loading issues. Those were the variables that would lead to a life-altering event for Kelly Sigler Patterson.

The horsewoman was in her native Texas when a dust devil, a long-lived whirlwind, picked up the structure George was under. It traumatized the horse who became claustrophobic, losing his willingness to be loaded onto horse trailers.

Sigler Patterson, a competitive eventer, had been competing George at the preliminary level and was ready to advance to the upper levels of the sport when the incident occurred.

However, one of Sigler Patterson’s neighbors, who had taken a number of Parelli classes, saw the trouble the horsewoman was having loading George and offered to help load the horse on the trailer. And within 15 minutes, by using the Parelli approach, George was successfully loaded.

Sigler Patterson learned enough from her neighbor about the program – one that concentrates on building a relationship and increasing knowledge through better understanding of the nature of horses – that after several lessons, she was able to load George herself.

Sigler Patterson saw the benefits firsthand, proceeded to acquire the Parelli program tools and became acquainted with the ground work.

The partnership between Sigler Patterson and her horses improved markedly, so much so that the horsewoman has advanced to become a Parelli 3 Star instructor. She is a level four student and is in the process of taking more classes with the goal of achieving her level five status.

Sigler Patterson owns Looking Glass Farm in Wagener with her husband Jim, and the Parelli instructor also works with children giving both private and group lessons.

For more information, call 803-522-4395 or visit www.kellysigler.com.