While many of us are well aware of the aftermath that has been caused by the recent rash of hurricanes, those who live in British Colombia, Canada have been forced to endure horrific wildfires. These fires continued to rage for well over a month and residents were forced to evacuate as a result. Many of these residents had farm animals to contend with and had to leave them behind in their rush to evacuate.
The Landry family had 100 sheep to worry about, in addition to a barn cat, some cattle and their two guard dogs. When they initially heard about the fire, they did not take it all that seriously and did not believe that it would become a wildfire. Once the fire began to spread, the smoke nearby would soon become far more dangerous and they knew that they had to leave.
They had 90 minutes to leave the property and they only had time to open one of the gates for their animals. Their house dogs were able to make the trip with them, but they needed to make sure that their sheep would remain safe while they were gone and this meant that the two guard dogs would need to stay behind. Bears and coyotes could show up at any time and this family would need to stay vigilant.
The Landrys said that this was one of the most difficult things that they ever had to do, but they did not have the ability to move 100 sheep on short notice. Two days after their departure, the family was given one hour to return to the property and check on all of these animals. They opened every gate and left an enormous bag of dog food behind.
Tad and Sophie were okay and while the forest service personnel in the area gave them a second window to re-enter the property and provide the animals with more food, they would soon learn that the Canadian Disaster Animal Response Team and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals were taking the initiative to make sure the animals caught behind the fire lines remained fed.
When they were finally able to return a few weeks later, the house was in fine condition and the dogs were still alive…but the neighborhood itself resembled a war zone. Their neighbors’ homes had been destroyed, but the fires had somehow missed their house. If only these dogs could talk, they would definitely have a story to tell about these weeks spent alone!
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