The Issue: Horses in Need of Rescue
On May 29, 2013, a four-year-old fjord pony named Gemma was found at the bottom of a 70-foot ravine, alive and trapped. Crews from eight different agencies responded, according to an article by the Redmond Reporter. It took them 12 hours and eight rope-and-pulley systems, but they managed to pull the 800-pound pony up. She survived, scared but relatively unharmed—with only a scratch on her face. Such efforts represent the commitment level volunteers, veterinarians, and organizations have for the safety and protection of Washington's animal population.
The Campaign: Purchasing Gear for Horse Rescues
All donations to this Grassroots campaign will be used by Washington State Animal Response Team to purchase essential animal-rescue gear for an emergency-response trailer. For every $200 raised, the organization can purchase one equine head protector to help volunteers rescue horses in danger. Each protector cushions the animal's head against sharp objects and rocks during the rescue. The organization plans to purchase four equine head protectors; all other donations will be used for other rescue gear, such as oxygen masks, a second Rescue Glide, and ropes to hoist the animal out of harm’s way. The WASART Board of Directors will provide up to $400 in matching donations.
Washington State Animal Response Team currently has one fully equipped trailer stationed in the south of its coverage area. When a call comes from the north, the trailer must travel, adding an extra two hours to the agency's response time. By outfitting a second trailer, WASART can reach emergency sites more quickly, helping increase their success rate and free up police and fire units occupied by the situation.
Washington State Animal Response Team
Training can prove to be the difference between life and death—success or failure—when it comes to animal rescue. Washington State Animal Response Team's all-volunteer crew has countless hours of training in everything from rope tying to animal care. When horses, cattle, dogs, cats, or even llamas are stranded or injured, the volunteers suit up and head out for a rescue. There, with the support of backboards, pulleys, and fire hoses tied into harnesses, the crew does what untrained people often cannot: rescue the endangered animal without hurting it or themselves.
Washington State Animal Response Team not only responds to isolated emergency situations, it also rescues animals from abusive situations and works with government agencies such as FEMA during natural disasters. During a recent response, Pierce County Animal Control rescued 39 neglected horses from a home in Graham, Washington, according to an article from MYNorthwest.com. There, the horses lived in barns with little to no light, in pens with standing urine and feces. The Washington State Animal Response Team coordinated more than 100 volunteers to pull the horses out of the situation and help care for the them afterward.
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