Colorado has a dry climate and is no stranger to forest fires. Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests have both experienced large wildfires this year. This poses new challenges for horse owners who are protecting horses from wildfires. The following are some tips we’ve put together to help horse owners prepare. Also, Colorado Horse Property has the largest database of horse properties than any other site and our team of horse-person realtors can help you find the perfect property for you.
Tips For Protecting Horses From Wildfires
First, figure out where you can take your horses in the event of a fire. Consider using regional stockyards or livestock sales yards, county fairgrounds, show facilities, racetracks, or even large parks to take your horse during emergencies. However, evacuation is not always possible. Create a fire proof area just in case. Find a large area with less vegetation and surrounded by metal fencing. A firesafe area could be a large sand arena used for training or a pasture that is bare because of overgrazing. Feed and water troughs should be metal and placed in the center of the area.
If a wildfire springs up close to your property quickly and without notice, you may be forced to leave your animals behind. After putting your horses in their designated firesafe area, mark them for identification. This can be done with a grease marker or pre-made tag. It may seem like a good idea to set your horses free, but this often causes more problems. Best case, loose horses often find roadways, blocking egress traffic. The last thing you want to do it block emergency vehicles from dealing with the fire. Worst case, loose horses can cause car accidents or even be struck by vehicles.