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Help Horse Owners Displaced by Tennessee Wildfires

Groups from around the Southeast are banding together to help horse, pet, and livestock owners recover from the devastating fires.

By Leslie Potter | December 2, 2016

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Forest Fire
Forest Fire. Public domain via

By now you’ve heard about the devastating wildfires that hit Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains. Due in part to drought-like conditions in the region, the fires rolled through parts of Sevier County, including the popular tourist getaways of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Many residents have lost their homes, and at least seven human deaths due to the fires have been reported.

As always in the case of an emergency, evacuating with horses or other large animals is exceptionally challenging due to the logistics of moving them and finding a safe place for them to go.

There are several groups helping to gather supplies for horse owners displaced by the fires, as well as reunite animals and their people.

Help for Displaced Horses maintains a list of facilities that can take in equine evacuees.

Southern Emergency Animal Response Unit is a newly created Facebook group that is helping to collect supplies for horses and humans affected by the fires. They are also helping spread the word for evacuees who have lost their animals during the disaster.

The Sevier County Animal Clinic will be providing medical supplies to treat animals injured in the fires. Contact 865-453-1221 or 803 Mize Ln., Sevierville, TN, 37862. They are also offering small animal boarding for displaced pets at their Smoky Mountain Pet Resort boarding facility.

The Sevier County Humane Society is helping reunite animals and people. Found animals should be brought to the Sevier County Fairgrounds. Anyone with an inquiry about a missing animal can call 865-453-7000 and leave a message if no answer. For those wishing to help, they are accepting donations for the care of found animals, some of which are sick or injured.

Additionally, the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley is collecting funds for the Sevier County Humane Society to help them care for found animals and assist in cleanup and repairs in the aftermath.

Gatlinburg Fire Livestock Aid is another newly created Facebook group gathering supplies and providing information on assistance for the animal evacuees.

To help humans displaced by the fire, contact The American Red Cross. The Knoxville News Sentinel has compiled a list of other ways to help on its website.

Leslie Potter is a writer and photographer based in Lexington, Kentucky.

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Help Horse Owners Displaced by Tennessee Wildfires

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Reader Comments

cc    Countyside, OH

12/10/2016 10:41:26 AM

How all full these fires must have been.

Tristan    DeT, TX

12/8/2016 8:18:05 AM

Glad to hear places are being set up to help find pets and lost animals.

pKL    Northern Part, WY

12/7/2016 5:02:09 AM

I can not imagine the horror these families are going threw, specially not know where their pets and animals are at. Sending prayers....and hope.

willy    a, AZ

12/6/2016 3:57:26 PM

wish them well

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