Photo: ABC7 KGO

A collection of  Animal rescue stories from the devastating California wildfires.

In addition to the obvious danger from the fire itself, rescue efforts for volunteers in California were complicated, Often, animals caught in fires flee or hide, especially when they are injured. Here are some stories you may have missed that unfolded throughout ravaged California communities.

California Communities Rally to Save Animals Caught in Wildfires
When Jeff Hill returned to his neighborhood in Paradise, California, after evacuating during the Camp fire, he came across a wayward horse — in a backyard swimming pool. The horse appeared to have jumped in to escape the flames, and was caught in the pool cover. Read more at CNN.

Cowboy Volunteers Ride to the Rescue for Horses
Jerry Kirk stood in the parking lot of a burned-down Safeway shopping center with a group of other cowboys, plotting a rescue route on their cell phones.Towing four horse trailers, the group headed to a home in Paradise, where a woman reported that she had to flee without her eight horses. Kirk made it just a few miles before a woman from another rescue group flagged down the caravan. She had found a German Shepherd, its feet badly burned, near downed power lines off Clark Road. She wanted to know if they had space for the pup. Read more at the San Francisco Chronicle.

How Dozens of Horses Were Rescued from California’s Devastating Wildfires
In the small hours of Friday morning, Abigail Sietsema was woken by her phone. Fast-moving flames had begun to engulf the hilly ridges above the area where she works as a horse handler. More than two dozen horses housed in two barns needed help – fast. Read more at The Guardian.

Animals Displaced by Woolsey Fire Find Refuge at California College
The signs pasted on the windows of the gymnasium at Pierce College are clear: “No Pets.” But, inside, a giant tortoise is, slowly, making laps around the lobby of Pierce College’s gymnasium. The college canceled classes due to the Woolsey Fire and turned its gym into a Red Cross Emergency Evacuation Center. Many evacuees left their homes with their pets and few other vital possessions. Read more at USA Today.

Photos: The Lost Animals of California’s Destructive Wildfires
See the photos at Quartz

Horse Reunited with Owners
A horse who survived the Carr Fire is back with her owners after she was found running through Redding’s burn area on Monday. The mare, named Elli, was caught on video evading capture by a group of construction workers who were trying to corral the frightened mustang several miles from home. They finally got her, but Elli quickly broke free and took off. See video at ABC7 KGO

Help is still needed

California’s equines need help now, and they will need your help in the weeks to come as they are reunited with owners or relocated to new homes. Feed, medical supplies and veterinary care are necessary to help manage this critical situation.

“Every time there’s an emergency affecting horses, the equestrian community rallies together,” said Emily Dulin, executive director of Brooke USA. “It’s complicated and challenging, but I am always impressed with how this community jumps in and helps. These generous people move heaven and earth to make sure horses are safe.”

Brooke USA is committed to helping. Donate to their California Equine Emergency Fund. Funds raised will be donated to organizations directly helping relief and recovery efforts. Donate here.

Other important links:

North Valley Animal Disaster Group

USEF Equine Disaster Relief Fund

Humane Society of Ventura County

Los Angeles Animal Care Foundation