FIRE! What would I do?

Fire! Devastating, ferocious, unstoppable fire. That is what people in California are facing. The photos and news coverage are heartrending and distressing. For everyone in the horse community it is a nightmare none of us ever want to live through. But I have been wondering…..what if I was faced with it? What would I do?

What would I do for my horse?

I would not hesitate to evacuate. My horse does not live on our home property and I do not have a horse trailer but I think that the people where I stable my horse would all be prepared to evacuate sooner rather than later.  I would do what ever I could to help to load feed, prepare my horse and be ready at any time of day or night to get him onto transport to get him out of the area.  If I could get livestock paint I would paint my phone number on his sides in case for some reason he were to get loose. Many people have evacuated horses to the beach in California for immediate safety until they can be moved elsewhere. Bless all those who are there helping and looking after these horses.

Firefighters and others have helped horses and donkeys who are fleeing the fire along the roads.45795678_10218144336109225_8590615206877462528_n

I would hope that if a fire of this devastating strength came to my area we would be able to get our horses out before the conflagration engulfed the forests that surround the farm.

45866264_10218147696353229_8582796107245944832_n

What would I do? What would I take from my home?

First and foremost  would be our little dog Tia. Then I would take my passport, other identification and credit cards.  If I had time I would take the albums of photos that I cannot replace; photos of my grandparents, my parents and my children.  Those are the most valuable things to me and everything else I could leave behind.

This photo is one of the most striking images of the California fires for me.  The horse, the flames, the fire engines.  It is particularly heartrending for me as this chestnut horse has a dark dot on his nose…..exactly like my  chestnut horse Biasini. This could be my horse. This is someone’s much loved horse.I can see that there are other horses and there is fencing so I pray that this horse is, at least, safe where he is.

45892981_10212193225605130_3122509930783834112_n

Sitting here in my home this evening all I can do is hope and pray that those fleeing the fires in California will survive and that those with horses, and other animals, will be able to save them.

Photos in this post from Pam Perry Conway on Facebook. I have no other photo credit information. The photo of the single horse is from John Poleno on Facebook.

43 Comments Add yours

  1. Joyful2bee says:

    Although I live in North Carolina, far away from the hellish conditions of the west coast, I have felt so much grief and sadness for all of those people, animals and life affected by the fires. Many of us are praying for healing of the Earth and its people and lives of every kind.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for this lovely comment. I join you in those prayers. I know that as the story of these devastating fires disappears from the news there will still be thousands of humans and animals suffering from the losses and the damage. Lets continue to pray.🙏

      Like

      1. Joyful2bee says:

        Amen! This suffering will be around for a long time.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. anne leueen says:

          I am afraid it will be ranging from loss of property to health damage due to smoke pollution.

          Like

  2. da-AL says:

    Anne, what an important subject — it is easy for people to forget animals when disaster strikes. I would first take care of my pets too. When it comes to anything besides the most essential material possessions (tho of course I don’t wish this on anyone), sometimes it’s not such a bad thing to start over…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      I think that in some disaster situations things happen so fast that people cannot take their pets if they do not have a car or they cannot get out by road with a car. Also animals panic and flee away from their owners. Horses are so difficult as they do panic and there are sometimes not enough horse trailers to get them all out. I hope we never have to be faced with this da-Al.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. da-AL says:

        me too, dear Anne ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  3. dray0308 says:

    Reblogged this on Dream Big, Dream Often.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Emma Cownie says:

    It’s terrible that so many people & animals have lost their lives & homes. I read about a man finding a horse in his swimming pool, obviously trying to escape the flames, the other day. With the help of neighbours he rescued it. I don’t think people have time to anything much, if had animals and no time I’d probably just let them loose and hope they’d find safety like the horses and donkeys on the beach.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Yes I think that is what many have had to do. If people have their own horse trailer or horse box they could move their horses but many do not. And even then the fire moves so fast and horses panic. It is a ghastly situation. At least they are now having some success at containing the fires.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This is really heart breaking. The place ( that is your blog) which gives most of the time positivity, today has given a difficult story . Let’s hope everything will turn good, expecting a positive news from you soon ma’am.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      It is a tragic situation. But the firefighters are now having some success in containing the fires. So I hope this is the beginning of a turn for the better. Also the amazing work that has been done by volunteers and firefighters to help the horses and the humans who have had to flee their homes is a testament to humanity working together at it’s best.

      Like

  6. cagedunn says:

    Fire is an enemy, horses know this, they panic, get hard to handle. the paint, tag or marks to identify them is very sensible in case they run, because they will try to. it’s in their interests to run from fire.
    I sincerely hope and pray they all come through – I’ve seen too many times where fire goes through and lack of preparation cost lives, both people and animals, and I hope I never see it again. Please, please help in any way you can.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      There are organizations like the US Equestrian Federation that are raising funds to help local agencies. And social media has been spreading thr names of organizations that are there on the ground already helping. The news today is a bit more optimistic for getting an increased level of control on the fires in the south. Thanks so much for your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. doar nicole says:

    I hope very much that everything will be ok, and everyone, safe and fine in the end in California, such sad news. I never thought that way, what I would take in such an awful situation, your article has been a useful read, thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are most welcome Nicole. It is so distressing to see the devastation caused by these fires. It got me thinking about what I would do.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Alli Farkas says:

    Huge fires are highly unlikely in my agricultural area of Michigan, but tornadoes and other destructive wind events are somewhat common. My horse is microchipped–I would just have to hope that someone would think to check for that if she got loose. There’s not much you can do for your large animals–or time to do it–if a tornado is heading for your area.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      We’ve had some tornado destruction here in Ontario this year as well. Biasini is micro chipped but it identifies him but not me as his owner. Thanks for joining in with a comment Alli.

      Like

      1. Alli Farkas says:

        I am assuming you are the owner—if that’s the case and you know which entity the chip is registered with you can change the owner info to you.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. anne leueen says:

          Yes I am the owner but I have learned with previous experience that registering with the German Verband is not easy. So BIasini has a breed registration and an FEI passport and I am the owner on the passport and registered with the FEI. So in an emergency he could be identified and I would be identified as the owner. But let’s hope neither of us ever have to go through a situation like the one in CA. Thanks for communicating on this Allii.

          Like

  9. I feel your anxiety over this. As a barn owner in Ontario with a farm in the hills surrounded by trees I am concerned every summer about drought and fire. All it would take is a lightning strike or one idiot with a cigarette to cause chaos. We have fire extinguishers and lots of water at our disposal. The fire department is not far away, still I hope we will never have need of their services. … It will take a lifetime for the effected areas in California to recover. I hope everyone gets the emotional, physical, mental and financial assistance they need to weather this awful storm. My prayers are with them … ❤️🙏❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for this comment Dorothy. The farm where my horse boards is adjacent to the York regional forest. The forestry policy is not to remove any felled trees. While I understand this I looked at it the other day and thought just as you did a lightning strike or cigarette could wreak havoc in a dry summer.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I know where your farm is. I’ve been there many times. It is tightly surrounded by forest. I can understand how this would be a concern there, too. Let’s all just stay safe. ❤️🐴

        Liked by 1 person

  10. dprastka says:

    I’m going to get a bunch of sharpie pens for the barn! Such a good idea and will get stuff from manestay, thanks for the link Avery!!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. dprastka says:

    Thank you for your post, and response. It’s hard to think about let alone write about, bless you Anne! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      It is a release for me to write about it instead of just worrying about it. Thank you Diana for your support.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Avery says:

    It is so scary. We have evacuated once for chance of fire. Took the horses and my tack. Just get out. Life is too short to chance it. The consequences are too permanent. You just never know and it changes in an instant.

    Livestock paint is good. Sharpie on the hooves. I have these things that clip onto the mane. https://www.sierraviewranchgeneralstore.com/manestay

    Liked by 4 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I got the paint idea from friends in Florida who have it for hurricane situations. The sharpie on the hooves is good and I have sharpies by the dozens at home and at the barn. I think the horse in the photo had something clipped onto the side of his halter. It is a dreadful situation and I am hoping that the news this morning that the southern fires are now a bit more controlled is cause for optimism. Thanks for commenting Avery.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. dprastka says:

    Like you I don’t have a horse trailer so I would have to rely on others for help. Seems like up North the camp fire was a very fast moving fire so sometimes there’s not much you can do to escape fast enough. There isn’t any forest where I live so a fast moving hot fire is very unlikely but I know a slower burning fire still can blow embers and still be devastating. I’ve seen this happen locally too many times. It’s so dry here in California, so sad all these fires. I pray for everyone affected by these fires, the photos you shared are amazing. I pray for all the animals too, so very sad. 🙏

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      It is so upsetting to think of these fires and the lives both animal and human that have been lost. The barn where I keep Biasini is surrounded by forest. We are a bit too laid back about the danger of forest fires up here as we do not have a dry climate. However this summer there was a lot of above normal heat so I think we need to think about it. The forest is conservation land and they cut down dangerous trees or let them fall if they are away from pathways but they are not removed as this is the current policy. This is good for wildlife but it could be a fire threat if our climate changes. Thanks for commenting Diana.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Irene says:

    What a scary thought! So thankful for the people helping care for the animals.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      It is a scary thought and I hope it will not become a reality but it did get me thinking.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Robyn says:

    So sad – I am happy that there are people volunteering to help those horses as well. I read something today that said a lot of the animals in the wildlife are on the run asking people to leave water out for them to drink as they flee. Devastating! Yes, definitely good to think about beforehand – to put a plan in place.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I think that with our climate up here we get a bit complacent but I with climate change things are happening in places they did not happen before. Thanks for your comment Robyn.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. It is good you have a plan Anne and it will be good to know what the barn’s emergency plans are too. The fires have been devastating and volunteers from animal rescue and welfare organisations have gone in to try and save dogs that were left in crates inside their homes by their fleeing owners. The emergency services and volunteers are doing an amazing job under the circumstances 💜

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Yes there are volunteers and animal rescue organizations doing amazing work. I saw that Sandra Bullock the actress has donated $100,000 to her local animal rescue. And now others are following her lead which is great as the rescue is located in the area of the southern fires.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. iScriblr says:

    Its heart breaking to see such devastation! Prayers for all – humans and animals!❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for this heartfelt comment. I hear this morning that the fires are closer to being contained.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. iScriblr says:

        Hopefully yes! Amen!🙏

        Liked by 1 person

  18. It’s unbelievable such a fire…very difficult for ppl & animals too bcz often they can’t say or ask for help or explanation. I like your plan & hope it will never come to this! 💕💕

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I hope so too. Like you I live in the more northern part of the world but with climate change who knows. Thanks for commenting Ray.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes stay strong & good luck. Hopefully it will be ok

        Liked by 1 person

I'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.