Blue Rein Ranch Sign


Mental Health Therapist

Marvin Vandenhoek, M.C., C.C.C.


Marvin has lived and worked in Southern Alberta his entire life. He grew up around animals, and is passionate about their therapeutic nature. His Animal Assisted Therapy Training was done under Eileen Bona at Dreamcatcher Association ( He has many years of experience in mental health, having worked as a teacher/school counsellor as well as a mental health therapist. He has a master’s degree in counselling and is a certified member of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA). 

Click here to view Marvin’s e-portfolio.

Counselling and Animal Assisted Therapy therapists.

Marvin and Charlie



Horses are very social animals with the ability to read emotions of other beings. They react to the emotions of others with what is called bio-feedback. It is this bio-feedback that gives the therapist and the client information about what emotions the client may be experiencing, or what fears and anxieties the client may be facing. Clients will work through a variety of exercises to explore emotional regulation, boundaries, personal awareness, safety, and relationship patterns

All animals used in therapy are screened to ensure they are suitable to work with clients in therapeutic work. 



Charlie is a Clydesdale-Quarterhorse cross. He stands over 16 hands high. His heart matches his size. He loves it when people fuss over him and nothing makes him happier than if you have a treat in your hand. If you have treats in your pocket, he will find those too!


Whin is one of Kate’s fillies. She was born in 2014. As gentle as her mom, just much more curious!


Kate is a gentle quarter horse that is retired from various rodeo events. She is calm and gentle, and has given birth to two lovely fillies during her time at the ranch so far.


Misty has a variety of paint, appaloosa, and arabian bloodlines. She is very athletic and loves to show her stuff over the jumping poles.


Pippa is a Welsh pony. Although she has a bit of the typical stubborn streak that ponies are known for, everyone loves her. Especially children can’t resist brushing their fingers through her beautiful long mane!



At Blue Rein Ranch, we raise German Shepherd Dogs. Our dogs are also used as therapy animals. They are an alternative medium and can be less intimidating to work with for some clients. 



Major is a male CKC registered German Shepherd Dog. Although he looks intimidating, his playful attitude is contagious and he loves a good game of fetch.

Moka the German Shepherd Dog

Moka is a female CKC German Shepherd Dog. She is a real working dog, and very committed to any task that she is asked to do.


Zasha is a female German Shepherd Dog. She is the sweetheart of the ranch. She loves affection and is very playful.

GSD puppies

If you’re lucky, we might even have puppies. We raise beautiful pets that go to loving homes to enrich people’s lives. Visit Blue Rein German Shepherds to see more about our dogs.