Narrow Escape: Caring for Equine Barn Fire Survivors

Just because a horse survives a barn fire doesn’t mean he’s out of harm’s way.

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Caring for Equine Barn Fire Survivors
Horses that survive barn fires could sustain serious injuries ranging from burns to smoke-related respiratory issues, many of which have long-term debilitating consequences. | Photo: iStock

Just because a horse survives a barn fire doesn’t mean he’s out of harm’s way

In March 2016, Grateful Pride was in training at the South Florida Trotting Center, in Lake Worth, Florida, when fire swept through his barn. Amid the flames and the smoke and the chaos, the 2-year-old Standardbred broke out of his stall and galloped to another barn on the Trotting Center campus.

“He was evidently looking for a safe place to go,” recalls Grateful Pride’s trainer, Jeff Stout. “He’s a smart horse. Really, he saved himself.”

All told, grooms, farm managers, and trainers were able to rescue 11 horses from the blazing barn before the building’s roof caved in. The 12 horses still inside died

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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