Safety Tips for Horses Caught in Floods

In the wake of the recent flooding in the Pacific Northwest, Tomas Gimenez, Dr.Med.Vet, of Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue weighed in on safety tips for horse owners managing horses and farms in flood conditions.

His pointers include:

  • Keep horses in a safe place on high ground. In high water, they might not see fences and can get caught up in them. Do not leave horses where they can become trapped.
  • Minimize the time horses stand in flood water and rinse them thoroughly afterward to prevent skin infections. Monitor for signs of lameness or disease and call your vet if needed.
  • Flooded barns can become unstable and collapse. Keep humans and animals out until declared safe.
  • Promptly remove dangerous debris from pastures and barnyards.
  • Give horses clean hay and water during and after the flood. "[Flood]water has chemicals, pesticides, etc., in it and the horse will not drink it," said Gimenez.
  • Dispose of any animal carcasses promptly and properly.

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Jennifer Walker

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