Your Guide to Equine Health Care

Be A Hero To Your Horse: Proactively React To Wildfire Danger

Rebecca Gimenez shares tips for preparing for a wildfire evacuation.

Be a Hero to Your Horse: Proactively React to Wildfire Danger
Having an evacuation plan in case of fire could save your horse's life.| Photo: iStock

Today I got a note from a reader in the West who boards her horse and is trying to be prepared. Stephanie Nicole said, “Just last week I got called ‘paranoid’ and other mean comments for wanting to be prepared. I’m the only person in a boarding stable of 40-plus horses with any sort of emergency plan. I got laughed at for putting shipping boots on a horse then going 10 minutes down the road. I’m the resident ‘safety freak’ but we’ll see who’s laughing when my horse is alive and safe when something happens!”

The main theme of this blog is to learn from the successes and failures of others in similar situations and scenarios that boggle the mind’s ability to understand them. Wildfires can happen anywhere in the world, and they move very fast. In this post, we will only discuss wildfire evacuation planning, since shelter-in-place planning is extremely dangerous and very difficult in wildfire situations.

We know that firefighters and weathermen have been predicting wildfires in the Western United States would be worse than ever this year due to years of drought, buildup of forest fuels, and increasing numbers of people living in the wildland/urban interface. State animal response planners in the Western states have been warning peopleto come up with an evacuation plan for themselves, their properties, and animals before the disaster

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Written by:

Rebecca Gimenez Husted, BS, PhD, is the primary instructor and president of Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue. Her first book, Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue, was published in 2008. She is an internationally sought instructor in technical rescue techniques, procedures, and methodologies, and she has published numerous critiques, articles and journal submissions on horse safety, technical large animal rescue and horse handling issues.

One Response

  1. DR Husted. This is Helios Equine Facility. Several of us trained at one of your courses. It has been so valuable and eye opening , as I own several barns. I plan to find a way to get all my staff trained, as well, as our volunteer fire department. We would love to invite you and your husband back out to see our completion of our facility. Your course is fantastic and I advise anyone with a barn to go and take her course. Thank you for all you do within the horse community as well as within the fire community.

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