Life is full of surprises. Take Lainey Morse for instance. A little over a year ago, she was going through a rough patch. Instead of spending hours with a therapist, she’d spend some quality time with her dwarf goats on her Albany, Oregon No Regrets Farm. It helped a lot. Time marched on and that’s when life took another turn – this time for the better.
Lainey was hosting a little girl’s birthday party at the farm. One of the moms asked if she could come back and do some yoga at Lainey’s homestead. “I told her that would be fine, but she’d have to do it with the goats around.”
A perfect pairing was born. Similar to peanut butter and jelly, goats and yoga mingle seamlessly. There may be the occasional nibbling of a yoga mat, but Goat Yoga has become an international hit. It’s all thanks to Lainey Morse’s foresight and Heather Davis’s yoga expertise.
“We’ve started doing private classes with big companies,” Lainey said about the quickly growing, goat-centered enterprise. “The waiting list for our classes is already at 2,500 names.”
Oregon State University students have their own set of classes to help reduce stress and cope with the rigors of college life. Students have access to reduced-rate Goat Yoga classes at nearby Hanson Country Inn. Community sessions are held at Emerson Vineyards in Monmouth along with wine tastings.
“You forget that you are stressed when you hang out with goats,” Lainey explained when asked about the therapeutic benefits of Goat Yoga. “They are inquisitive animals. When they chew their cud they go into a meditative state. Just being out with the goats can give you a sense of calm. It’s all about letting goat.”
Goat puns aside, Goat Yoga has gotten the attention of yoga enthusiasts and animal lovers everywhere. “People are coming from all over,” she said. “There’s a group from Berlin doing a video on us really soon.”
Today, Lainey’s eight wonderfully named goats, including Annie Goatly, have their own Goat Yoga truck and a Goat Yoga IPA. The beer is a collaborate effort between Yachats Brewing and Claim 52 Brewing.
“I’m selling license agreements for Goat Yoga outside of Oregon,” Lainey added about the unexpected popularity of her invention. “There are people in Kansans, Seattle, Ohio, New York, Atlanta and more interesting in bringing Goat Yoga to their communities.”
But stardom hasn’t gone to her goat’s tufted heads. They still greet everyone with enthusiasm, wonder, and the Zen of a true goat master.
Coastal Knows Goats
Looking for feed or fencing for your own goats? We’ve got what you need at Coastal Farm & Ranch. Have a question about Goat Yoga? You’d better email Lainey at firstname.lastname@example.org or send her a message through her website goatyoga.net. There you’ll find information about the many benefits of animal (and goat) assisted therapy, where you can find a class in your area, how to add your name to the waiting list, as well as Goat Yoga toys and books.
The Real Benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy
Here are a few of the many ways hanging out with animals can help with your day-to-day stress and more.
- Petting an animal promotes the release of serotonin, prolactin and oxytocin, which are all known to help elevate moods.
- Studies have found some connection between animal therapy and memory recall in dementia patients.
- Animal companionship can help lower blood pressure and improve cardiovascular health.