Available on www.exclusivelyequine.com or on Amazon.
Reviewed by Carol M. Upton – www.dreamsaloud.ca
Heart is what got these horses out of hurricane-ravaged areas. ~ Ky Evan Mortensen
Horses of the Storm is a collection of essays for our future, as climate change brings more weather-related disasters. These can strike with little warning and, while we might keep extra water and perhaps an earthquake kit handy, we may not have gone so far as to thoroughly plan for our livestock. What happens to the animals in these situations?
Hurricane Katrina pounced the Gulf Coast in 2005 and flooded New Orleans, causing devastation and apocalyptic suffering to humans and animals in its wake. Ky Mortensen was part of the subsequent largest scale equine rescue ever carried out. This book is his first-hand account of these determined rescue efforts, accomplished with a handful of heroic volunteers and no blueprint.
Many horses drowned or starved during this disaster. Some ponies were swimming in circles for days before being rescued. One horse was found stranded on two boards from which he could not move, waiting desperately for his owner’s return. Mortensen speaks of horses that immediately began to call for help as soon as they realized humans were in the area. These scenes are impossible to forget.
Yet, hundreds of horses and thousands of other animals were saved along the way. No creature was left behind if they were found alive. The book is a heartfelt tribute to those who did this work and it includes an Emergency Preparedness Guide to cover planning for horse care during almost any emergency. Many more creatures can survive the next disaster, no matter where it occurs, due to Mortensen’s careful record of what was learned from this one.
Ky Mortensen is Director of Advancement for the Louisiana State University Equine Health Studies Program. He feels it is paramount that people prepare a disaster plan that includes their animals. A portion of book proceeds goes to the LSU Equine Health Program.