Saturday, March 31by Jane Levene on 03/31/12
- Very early Spring here in the Denver area! Warm, trees blooming, the Pleasant Park fire under control, mostly, anyway. I've moved the males from one evacuated herd down to the Salida farm and will move the 20 females later in the week. Tomorrow will be the test for the fire fighters, high winds expected again. The evacuated herd has some older members and in the rush to move them, looks lie a few got some mimor leg sprains perhaps from crowded trailers. But that can't really be avoided, it is actually better to pack them in a bit, and get them out of harms' way than to think you'd ever have time for a second trip. So, if you live in an area with the potential for natural disasters, take the time now to plan for your evacuation and your pets.
- Have your vehicles fueled and pointing the right way out at all times!
- Practice hooking up your trailer, if it is needed in a hurry
- Know how many animals will fit into each trailer or vehicle.
- Have a list of friends who can help, and make sure they have maps to your place.
- have a master list, with microchip numbers of your animals hanging in the barn, visible and accessible by anyone who is helping
- Label halters, and have them neatly stored. It may only be in groups such as "Large/Medium/Small" but it will all help in a rush, have lead ropes neatly bundled and ready to use
- Make sure you have easy access to your barns and home, for larger vehicles or trucks with trailers. Visibility may not be great, and no one needs to add stress with narrow drives, tight corners or inadequate access
- Have printed maps to hand out to helpers marking a meeting point at a safe location away from the potential fire
- make yourself a list of any tasks you can possibly think of to make your evacuation plans more effective
So do your evacuation plans now, before you ever need them! We are fortunate to live in a place not likely to have a major fire or other natural disaster, But I do keep my truck fueled at all times and the trailer in an easy location. I can be hooked up and out of the drive in less than 10 minutes. On a lighter note, the evening barn check had everyone pronking around and cavorting in a major conga line! With the visiting herd here, I can't have the gates and barns all as open as I like, but the PVs and alpacas made do. The little weanlings were racing in and out of the barn at breakneck speed, to the point that one couldn't make the stop and actually wound up leaping over the stall gate right in front of me! We were both equally surprised, ha! I was right at the barn door and could quickly shut it and shoo her back in with her group. Their happiness and joy in the cool evening air was a treat to watch. I only wish we all could have more moments like that in our daily lives, or have the wisdom to look for them each day, because they are there if we only slow down enough to see them. Take care, Jane