Animal owners may be reluctant to follow evacuation orders during a wildfire because they are unsure what to do with their animals.
When a wildfire becomes a danger to homes and property, having an evacuation plan in effect is crucial. Time may be short, and a quick evacuation can save the lives of livestock as well as people.
Wildfires in the western U.S. peak during the months of July through September. Thunderstorms produce lightning that can ignite fires by striking dry, dead timber.
The fire can be spread quickly by wind and change direction in a matter of seconds. Once a fire threatens occupied areas, emergency personnel will begin to evacuate residents. Evacuations need to be done as quickly as possible.
When you have to leave your home, there are places you can contact to assist you with your pets and livestock. The local Humane Society may be able to house your small animals temporarily until you find a place to relocate. They can also assist with animals that have been lost during a wildfire. One-time water assistance for animals left behind is another service that may be offered.
"People are evacuating as they have been told and are bringing their animals to us," said Larimer Humane Society Spokesperson Stephanie Ashley.
The Larimer Humane Society in Fort Collins, Colo., is able temporarily to house cats, small mammals and farm animals (the size of a goat or smaller) that have been displaced by wildfires, according to larimerhumane.org.
"People who leave their animals come back and visit them every day and pick them up when they find a place to stay."
The Larimer Humane Society can also assist people in their area find boarding facilities or kennels.
When evacuations are necessary, help is available to evacuate your horses and/or cattle.
"The fairgrounds are opened up immediately when an evacuation order is given," said Don Hatfield. Hatfield is a New Mexico State Law Enforcement Officer who works with the New Mexico Livestock Board.
"Residents take their animals to a neighbor's, relative's or the fairgrounds," Hatfield said.
When local ranchers need trailers or vehicles, volunteers in the area are able to provided the needed equipment.
Hatfield said, "All the volunteers have been working to evacuate the animals since Saturday. They worked from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. MDT, and all the animals in the danger zone were evacuated by Sunday. We were even able to locate animals that got out, and they have been evacuated also."
Before a wildfire threatens your home and animals, make some calls to find out what resources are available to you during an emergency.
Colorado High Park Fire
Larimer Humane Society (970) 226-3647, ext. 7
The Ranch Events Complex (970) 619-4000
New Mexico Little Bear Fire
Humane Society of Lincoln County (575) 257-9814
New Mexico Livestock Board (575) 649-2578
The storm responsible for the wind, cold, rain and snow in the Northeast Friday and Saturday will slowly ease up for the balance of the holiday weekend.
A few days after a chilly storm departs the Northeast, warm weather will make a strong comeback in parts of the Midwest and the East later next week.
During Sunday's race, the skies will be variably cloudy with the risk of a few showers.
"This pup was literally singing when he saw his family," Michelle Karolicki, relocation program manager of the Central Oklahoma Humane Society, said about a reunion that took place on Thursday.
Another plunge of chilly air will set the stage for the risk of a frost and freeze centered Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia and other nearby states this weekend.
Downpours and locally severe thunderstorms over the Central states will not only foil holiday weekend activities, but will also put some lives at risk.
Cut Bank, MT (1982)
35 degrees with a mix of snow and rain. The high temperature from the previous day was 78.
A tornado of long duration was observed for 7 hours and 20 minutes and was said to extend 293 miles. The storm struck Mattoon and Charleston, killing 70 people.
New England (1967)
(25th-26th) Coastal New England battered by a great Nor'easter. Winds mounted to 70-80 mph on the coast. Blue Hill had sustained winds of 60 mph and Logan had sustained winds of 50 mph. Lowest pressure of 29.30" was measured over the ocean; 5-10" of snow fell in the Berkshires with considerable damage to the tobacco crop in the Connecticut River Valley. Temperature dropped to 31 degrees at Pittsfield on the 30th for a remarkable end of May freeze.