Posts tagged horses

Be Ready for Wildfires

Are you ready to face a wildfire? I’d like to remind everyone of an excellent article by Alayne Renee Blickle that was first published in THE HORSE in 2013. Alayne provides easy-to-follow tips to help you make your own evacuation plan now, before (and hopefully never) you need to put your plan into action. Alayne’s article is important enough that you should take another look at it if you’ve read it before, or please do take the time to read her article if it is new to you.  The link is: . You’ll also enjoy Alayne’s website, . She has great information for improving all areas of your farm.

Also, be sure to read the comment from Sarah in response to Alayne’s article, and visit her Silhouette Farm website, to see photographs and read her narrative of her experience in the 2008 Triangle-Complex fire in California.

Good information about planning for fire safety

Following the loss of eight horses in a barn fire at Gerry Carwood’s barn near Keeneland Racetrack on May 9, 2014, Natalie Voss wrote an excellent article titled “Fire Safety in Barns is All About Planning Ahead” that was published in the May 25, 2014 issue of the Paulick Report.  It will be well worth your time to read it at .


More on Heated Water Buckets

Ryan Rice contacted me with some good information about the electrical aspect of heated water buckets:

“I’ve just read your article on heated buckets for horses in a barn. While I understand the concern about safety and fire hazards, there’s no reason to be worried and not use one. A 5 gallon heated bucket only uses 130 watts, while a 16 gallon bucket still only uses 260 watts. If you get a heating element for a 100 gallon Rubbermaid water bucket you might get up to around 1500 watts, but most people don’t use 100 gallon buckets inside the barn. So, if you have a 15 amp circuit, which is the smallest you could have, the maximum continuous watts would be 1440. As long as properly rated extension cords are used–preferably none–and for extra safety, a GFI outlet, you can keep your horse drinking water all winter.

Dave Vigness’ Heated Water Bucket Project

Although the season for using heated water buckets is just about over, Dave Vigness has a good summer project for you talented, mechanically savvy folks to tackle. Here’s his story:

Whispering Creek Rescue got started in somewhat of a backwards way. We initially contacted a rescue north of us to inquire about a horse, but then the kids got a little older and lost interest and we didn’t go any farther.

A while later we received a call from that rescue inquiring about our need for a horse as they had just rescued almost a hundred horses and didn’t have a place for them all. After a bit of conversation we volunteered our acreage for grazing for a few months. In exchange for allowing grazing for eighteen horses we were allowed to keep two of the rescues. Our first two boys were a yearling and an older abused gelding that has taken us three years to be able to get close enough to even groom.

Continue reading Dave Vigness’ Heated Water Bucket Project

Why Run-In Sheds Need Lightning Protection

If you have a run-in shed in your pasture, there is always a danger that the shed, possibly being the tallest structure in the area, may be hit by lightning. Run-in sheds can be grounded; discuss your options with a licensed lightning protection installer.

Trisha Keller lost a beloved horse to a lightning strike. After reading her letter to the Editor of The Horse in June, 2012, I contacted her and she was kind enough to provide this account:

“I just thought that I would share with you my experience with our shed in response to your article “Run-In Shed Rundown”. An early afternoon this past July, in Southeast WI, we experienced a short 10 minute storm that brought with it unexpected lightning. When there are storms in my area and I am home I will always bring my horses into their stalls. On this occasion there was no warning of a pending storm until it had already hit my area and moved on towards Milwaukee. After the storm, my mom went out to check on the horses and to her detriment she came upon our two horses in their shed, one dead and the other fighting for his life. She immediately called me as I have worked on horse ranches as a Breeding Manager for 5 years and have experienced many disasters and fatal circumstances. I was over an hour away so she had to handle this on her own which was extremely hard for her as she has never had a horse die before.

Continue reading Why Run-In Sheds Need Lightning Protection