Posted: Jun 24, 2012 2:57 PM
Updated: Jun 25, 2012 10:51 AM
With Tropical Storm Debby threatening the Gulf States, Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain is reminding livestock owners that they need to be prepared to not only take care of themselves but also their animals.
For cattle and horse owners, you should select the place on their property that is least likely to flood where livestock can quickly and easily be moved when a hurricane or other severe weather threatens the area.
Some owners may choose to trailer their expensive or genetically superior breeding stock and bring the animals with them during an evacuation. Make arrangements ahead of time on where you will travel with those animals and move out early.
"When hurricane evacuations usually occur, it is extremely hot outside. You don't want to be stuck on the interstate, just sitting there, with a trailer full of livestock." Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain said.
Strain said now is also the time to make sure livestock trailers are in good condition and ready for an unexpected road trip. Check the tire pressure and the rubber for wear, test brake and running lights, and inspect the overall condition and functioning of the trailer.
Important items to take along during an evacuation include health records (especially proof of EIA testing for horses), food, special medications, and bridles or leads.
Proper identification for livestock that are evacuated is crucial during a natural disaster.
Livestock owners who run into problems with their preparations can call their local Office of Emergency Preparedness (OEP) for assistance.